Jobs – a shopping list

In a fallow period... I will paint for money any time.
(Winslow Homer)

There is a wealth, a cornucopia, of jobs where your ability to draw – to visually commnicate ideas, concepts, plans, specifics – is highly valued. See the list below. Read it carefully. I guarantee there will be at least one occupation just for you!

You may want to be a fashion illustrator. Well, that’s you. Me, I’ll take automotive design – where initial sketches go into computer modeling software, then into a wood-and-plaster body buck – waiting for that magic moment when the head designer greenlights the project for production!

Once past our own preferences, there are the 4-square considerations (see previous chapter). And in the Who’s Got The Most Money area, we can do a little research and identify those jobs and professions that pay much better than the others.

Go to for more information about any occupation:

and also SimplyHired – you’ll find lots of salary information on the internet.

Look up job titles from the list below. On any Payscale job page, go to the bottom and look at the map of best places to make the most money. Here’s what it looks like for Art Director –

Here’s the list. Not all jobs will be in Payscale, but you can find their salary numbers on Google. What’s the real-life average pay for one of these jobs? About ¾ of the way up the pay scale. Example – $75,000 for a job with a $100,000 top salary.

You’ll also notice that pay varies wildly by location. It’s not a mystery – how many large ad agencies or high-tech corporations do you expect to find in downtown Cheyenne, Wyoming? Like, none? But it’s a great place if you want to get into the fast-growing energy field – lots of coal or natural gas jobs, but, sorry, not much graphics work. Frack!

Art-related job list

3D film/video conversion artist
3D printing artist/designer
AI illustrator specialist
aircraft livery designer (paint jobs for airliners)
animal portrait artist
annual report designer
architectural graphic designer
architectural illustrator
art director, ad agency
art director, corporate
art director, fashion
art director, film
art therapist
book designer
building designer
car stylist (automotive designer)
catalog designer
children's book illustrator
comic book artist
commercial artist
corporate identity designer
corporate trainer
courtroom exhibits artist
courtroom sketch artist
creative director
desktop publisher
elearning developer
fabric designer
fashion designer
fashion illustrator
financial presentation graphic artist
fine artist
graphic artist
graphic designer
graphic novel illustrator
industrial designer
infographics designer, municipal
infographics designer, national and state parks
interior designer
landscape architect
lettering artist
logo designer
magazine layout artist
marketing communications manager
marketing director
medical illustrator
multimedia designer (art for web)
mural designer
museum display designer
museum restoration specialist
newspaper layout artist
packaging designer
portrait artist
presentation designer
product designer
production artist
public relations
scientific illustator
set decorator
set designer
signs and signage systems designer
silkscreen artist
sketch artist (police, courtroom)
storyboard artist, film
technical illustrator
technical writer
TV production artist
user help producer
user interface designer
VFX artist/set designer
video game artist/designer/developer/producer
web developer
web graphic designer
web designer
web production artist

See something you’d like to work at? You bet you did. Is the list complete? Of course not. There are so many different art jobs! New types of jobs each year! Jobs where your drawing skills help you get promoted faster! But I think we’ve hit the high points here. These are good jobs. Many pay high salaries. If you’re working in any one of them, believe me, you’ll be looking over your shoulder, saying ‘I can’t believe someone is actually paying me to do this job!’ Ssshh. Life is good.

There are hundreds of thousands of people working in these professions. Many with above-average paychecks and benefits. Might as well be you! After all, you can draw, and that’s your entry ticket to a great future.

Next, we’ll look at five key areas where artists thrive – Video Games, VFX Magic, Ad Agencies, Defense and High-tech, then Pharmaceuticals & Biomed.

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