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Fine artist

Alternative titles for this job include

Fine artists create original works of art using methods like painting, drawing and sculpture.

Average salary (a year)

Variable

Typical hours (a week)

39 to 41 irregular

You could work

freelance / self-employed managing your own hours

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How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a fine artist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • self-teaching

University

You'll need a high level of skill and talent in your chosen art form. To develop these skills, you could train by doing a degree or postgraduate award in:

  • art and design
  • art history
  • fine art
  • visual arts
  • graphic arts

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • a foundation diploma in art and design
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study

More Information

College

You can do a Level 4 Higher National Certificate or Level 5 Higher National Diploma in Art and Design or Art Practice.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a higher national certificate or higher national diploma

More Information

Volunteering

Volunteering with community arts projects can open up possibilities and extend your network of contacts, which could be useful for finding work.

Other Routes

If you're exceptionally talented and have taught yourself, you may be able sell your work without formal training or qualifications.

More Information

Career tips

You'll need to be able to promote yourself in different ways. You could:

  • create an online presence through your own website, blog or through social media channels
  • join together with other artists to form a 'collective' or artistic community
  • organise your own shows in galleries or other venues

You could also:

  • get an agent
  • raise funds through crowdfunding websites
  • illustrate products like books or greetings cards

Entering competitions or open exhibitions can also raise your profile as an artist. a-n The Artists Information Company regularly lists opportunities.

Professional and industry bodies

You could become a member of a-n The Artists Information Company for networking and professional development opportunities.

Further information

You can find out more about becoming a fine artist from:

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • knowledge of the fine arts
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • design skills and knowledge
  • the ability to think clearly using logic and reasoning
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Typically you will:

  • 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

Working environment

You could work in a creative studio, in a workshop or from home.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

You could move into areas like art therapy, art conservation, valuation or art sales.

You could combine working as an artist with teaching.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a fine artist right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Diploma in Art and Design

  • Provider: KENDAL COLLEGE
  • Start date: 09 January 2022
  • Location: Kendal

Intermediate Diploma in Art and Design

  • Provider: DCG
  • Start date: 13 September 2022
  • Location: Derby

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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