How to Become a Fine Artist

Overview & Salaries

Recommended Degree:
The right degree for you depends on the industry and company you apply for. Those looking for an entry positions will likely need at least a bachelors degree in multimedia design, computer programming, software programming, or development. There are also bachelor programs specifically designed for video game programming and design. If you are looking to get into a competitive or advance position, then a master’s degree in multimedia development or video game development/design can help you stand out in the hiring process.

Begin your career path today by signing up for free information from one of our accredited colleges below that offer programs to help get you started as a fine artist.

Much Does a Fine Artist Make?:
$44,380 (national median salary, to view salaries in your state click on the “Best Places to Work” tab up top)

Expected Growth from 2012-2020:
+1,300 additional people employed

Specialization Options:
Pottery, glass, jewelry, textile, paint, sculptures, and painter.

(all information above provided by the 2012 BLS Fine Artist page)

The Best Places to Become a Fine Artist

A recent study from Artbistro – a division of – selected the best cities in the United States for both artists and designers to call home.

  • Seattle
  • Washington DC
  • Raleigh, NC
  • Oklahoma City
  • Los Angeles
  • Salt Lake City
  • San Antonio
  • Bridgeport
  • Newark
  • Austin

Employment and Information Data for Fine Arts

Why Become a Fine Artist?

Because growth of the arts often depends on the health of the economy, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics cautiously estimates 5% job growth in the sector from now until 2020. Although fine artists are becoming more scarce in today’s world in lue of more technical art positions like graphic design or multimedia art, there is still a large appreciation for someone who can create a beautiful painting or insightful sculpture. Art has been around since the time of the caveman and there are still people with natural artistic skills. If you are one of them and painting, drawing or sculpting is your passion than you can still make a career of it with the right connections and education.

Recommended Courses to Help You Become a Fine Artist

  • Visual thinking
  • Basic drawing
  • Color
  • Painting basics
  • Figure drawing
  • Introductory painting
  • Digital drawing
  • Painting materials and methods
  • Contemporary global art
  • Silkscreen printing
  • Printmaking

Degree Options to Earn a Fine Arts Career

In general fine arts programs focus on creating course schedules that develop creative thinking, history and problem solving in the in the traditional arts- painting, sculpture, drawing, etc. In recent years more detailed, and narrowly focused, programs have emerged – Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) and Master of Fine Arts (MFA) — that better ready students for a career in art and design.

In addition, these programs allow students to vary their interests by combining studies to include: media arts (animation, computer imaging, interactive design illustration, photography), textile design (weaving, fiber arts, surface design), and traditional art and design (painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture) with other existing degree tracks within the College of Design.