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Fine artists create original works of art using methods like painting, drawing and sculpture.
1. Entry requirements
You’ll need a high level of skill and talent in your chosen art form.
You may need some training in art or design, like an HND, first or higher degree in:
- art and design
- art history with fine art
- fine art
- visual art
You’ll also need to be able to promote yourself in different ways, like:
- having an online presence through your own website, blog or through social media, like Instagram
- joining together with other artists or ‘collectives’
- organising your own shows in galleries or other venues
- volunteering with community arts projects
You could also:
- get an agent
- raise funds through crowdfunding websites like Kickstarter
- enter competitions and open exhibitions
- illustrate products like books or greetings cards
Creative Choices has more information about working in a creative career, training courses and job opportunities.
2. Skills required
- a high level of creativity
- a good appreciation of colour and shape
- business skills to promote and market your work
- the ability to cope with a changing workload
3. What you'll do
- work from your own ideas, or a commission from an individual or an organisation
- sell your work through an agent or through galleries, exhibitions, shops or online
- research subjects, materials and new artistic techniques
- network with agents, dealers, gallery owners and other artists
- attend exhibitions and join artists’ groups
You might also:
- work as ‘artist in residence’ – running classes and workshops in places like schools, prisons or hospitals
- teach art classes privately, in colleges or through community learning
- run local art projects
Your earnings will depend on demand and what you or your agent can negotiate.
You may combine exhibiting and selling your work with other part-time or full-time jobs.
5. Working hours, patterns and environmentYou’ll arrange your own working hours, which may involve fitting your art work around another full-time or part-time job.
You may work in a studio, at home, in rented space within a shared studio, or in specialist facilities like a print or sculpture workshop.
6. Career path and progressionYou could move into areas like art therapy or art conservation.
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Last updated: 10 September 2018