Jobs for artists are as varied as the colour wheel itself. If you love to draw, your passion could very well sketch out an impressive career path.
What you’d do: Animators develop characters, objects, and environments for various applications, including video game development, motion graphics for TV and film, and more.
What you’d need: A bachelor’s degree in computer graphics or multimedia studies is usually required, as well as 2-D and 3-D animation and design skills.
What you’d make: $49,803 per year
What you’d do: Encourage future doodlers! Remember art class, where you could finally let your imagination loose? If you’re an art teacher, you get to create that opportunity for kids every day.
What you’d need: Public school teachers need a state certification on top of a bachelor’s degree.
What you’d make: $55,490 per year
What you’d do: Cake decorators whip up everything from elaborate multi-tiered wedding cakes to more straightforward creations for corporate events, birthdays, and other celebrations.
What you’d need: Cake decorators usually hone their skills in culinary school.
What you’d make: $25,090 per year
What you’d do: There’s lots of clothing—outerwear, underwear, streetwear, everywhere!—and all of it needs to be designed. Same goes for shoes and accessories. Fashion designers create wearables with performance, comfort, and style in mind.
What you’d need: A bachelor’s degree in fashion design or merchandising is usually required, and you should be up on the latest fashion trends, have an acute sense of detail, and knowledge of apparel construction standards and materials.
What you’d make: $61,444 per year
What you’d do: Graphic designers create and edit visuals, typically in graphic design software like Adobe InDesign. You’d most likely work directly for a brand or for a variety of clients at an agency.
What you’d need: A bachelor’s degree in graphic design or a related field such as printmaking is the typical minimum, although a portfolio of your work will likely also be required.
What you’d make: $47,640 per year
Illustrator and technical illustrator
What you’d do: Illustrators get their doodle on every day, creating everything from sketches and storyboards to glyphs and logos. Technical illustrators (also known as scientific illustrators) use descriptions of products to create visual counterparts. They draft charts, schematics, and diagrams that will often appear in technical publications, textbooks, or user manuals.
What you’d need: A bachelor’s or associate’s degree in illustration will help you land this job.
What you’d make: $56,305 per year
What you’d do: From cars to home appliances to manufactured goods, industrial designers are the people behind the designs. Your job is to weigh a bunch of factors like function, aesthetics, and production cost, and propose designs to project managers.
What you’d need: Along with a portfolio of your best work, industrial designers should have a related bachelor’s degree in fields like graphic design or engineering.
What you’d make: $67,790 per year
What you’d do: Interested in art and cosmetics? This job’s all about making people look great, whether it’s on the set of a movie or at a brand. Let’s call it face doodling.
What you’d need: Typically, you’ll need a certificate from a cosmetology program. View this sample resume for a makeup artist.
What you’d make: $24,300 per year
Motion graphics designer
What you’d do: Do you like big, explodey stuff and slick 3-D models? Not to be confused with animators, motion graphics designers create and edit imagery in a live action shot, which might also contain animation and special effects.
What you’d need: Most hiring managers look for a bachelor’s degree in computer graphics or film, plus a qualified portfolio of motion graphics work. Besides that, you’ll want to sharpen your software skills with commonly used programs in the Adobe creative suite such as After Effects.
What you’d make: $56,580 per year
What you’d do: Painters come in many shades, including interior and exterior painters, and in industrial and automotive capacities.
What you’d need: Painting doesn’t require a college degree, so many people pursue it after high school and get on-the-job training.
What you’d make: $37,570 per year