You have probably heard the term “starving artist” a time or two in your life, but it doesn’t have to apply to you if you can find the right entry-level jobs in art. This term is a reflection on the difficulty most artists have making money at their preferred crafts. Though it is often used to describe all artists, it’s really a misnomer, and it perpetuates a stereotype of artists as poor and desperate. The truth, in fact, is that many artists are living and working quite successfully; in fact, they’re doing more than that—they’re thriving. There are many different jobs in art, and how much you’ll make and how successful you will be really depends on which job you have.
Some artists, for example, work in the motion picture and video industries, and the average yearly salary for these positions is an impressive $70,420—not quite “starving.” Artists who work in advertising, public relations, and other related areas can make around $64,010 per year, while those working in publishing average around $64,350 yearly. Even the average independent artist can make around $33,670 per year. That might seem like a low salary, but many artists feel the trade-off of doing what they love is well worth it.
These are just a few examples of the types of art entry-level jobs available. There are many other art jobs to consider, such as becoming an art teacher, working in an art museum, and managing art programs for community centers, hospitals, and the like. The trick is simply to find your passion and then to go after it with everything you’ve got.