Fine art careers
The occupations listed below are a selection of those which may interest Fine Art students and graduates.
Fine Artists usually specialise in a particular medium to create original pieces. Disciplines include painting, sculpture and drawing and mediums can vary from paper to metal and far beyond. Artists may work independently or on a commission basis.
Job profile of a Fine Artist on the Prospects website
Job profile of a Fine Artist on the All About Careers website
Job profile of a Fine Artist on the National Careers Service website
Concept artists create sketches of characters or environments for use in computer games, films, videos etc. They work to project/client briefs.
Job profile of a Concept Artist on the Prospects website
A Curator manages collections of art work and/or historical artefacts. They are often involved with the acquisition and care of items. Curator roles can be varied, often involving marketing, events management, public relations and fundraising.
Job profile of a Museum/Gallery Curator on the Prospects website
Job profile of a Curator on the Target Jobs website
Graphic designers create images and lettering for use across various digital and print media from websites to magazines. This role combines technical skill and creativity as well as the ability to communicate clearly to work with clients.
Job profile of a Graphic Designer on the Target jobs website
Job profile of a Graphic Designer on the National Careers Service website
Job profile of a Graphic Designer on the Prospects website
Illustrators use their creative skills to bring visual elements to a story. They may specialise in a particular medium such as digital illustration or drawing.
Job profile of an Illustrator on the National Careers Service website
Printmakers are involved with transferring images to a variety of surfaces using moulds and a variety of different techniques. Techniques vary from traditional craft-based methods to more modern computer-generated design.
Job profile of a Printmaker on the Prospects website
Job profile of a Printmaker on the All About Careers website
Set Designers work in film, television and/or theatre creating the set in collaboration with other members of a production crew. Clear communication and creativity are essential for this role.
Job profile of a Set Designer on the Prospects website
Job profile of a Set Designer on the Target Jobs website
Job profile of a Productions Designer on the Prospects website
There are opportunities to teach art in secondary schools, further education colleges and also primary schools.
Graduate jobs in teaching and education on the Prospects website
Get Into Teaching website from the Department for Education - explains the various routes into teaching
As well as teaching through lectures and seminars, academic staff in higher education also carry out research and a wide range of administrative and pastoral tasks. Although a teaching qualification is not required, you will need a higher degree, normally a PhD. Competition is strong for entry-level academic posts.
Job profile of a higher education lecturer on the Prospects website
Job profile of a higher education lecturer on the TARGET Jobs website
I Want to Work in: A University
For a range of additional visual arts careers, visit Creative and Cultural Skills
Please note that some of these careers may require further study.
For further information on these careers, see also:
- I Want To Work In
- Information on types of jobs from Prospects
- Information on career sectors from TargetJobs
People in some Fine Art roles may be self-employed
A Fine Art degree may be useful in the following career areas:
An arts administrator manages activities and services which support the arts sector, involving projects and initiatives provided by arts organisations.
Job profile of an Arts Administrator on the Prospects website
job profile of an Arts Administrator on the TARGET Jobs website
job profile of an Arts Administrator on the National Careers Service website
Art Gallery Manager
This role can vary widely depending on the type of gallery. The manager may be involved in more technical aspects such as installation of exhibits and managing facilities. They could also be involved in aspects such as marketing, sales and communication.
Job profile of a Commercial Gallery Manager on the Prospects website
Job profile of a Commercial Gallery Manager on the All About Careers website
This role involves a great deal of project management. The exhibitions officer is involved in various aspects from planning and organising through to buying and maintaining permanent or travelling exhibitions.
Job profile of a Museum/Gallery Exhibitions Officer on the Prospects website
Job profile of an Exhibition Organiser on the Target Jobs website
Art therapists help people who may struggle to communicate verbally to express their feelings through visual art methods. Practitioners work with a wide variety of patients experiencing a variety of difficulties.
Job profile of an Art Therapist on the Target Jobs website
Job profile of an Art Therapist on the National Careers Advice Service website
Job profile of an Art Therapist on the Prospects website
Visual Merchandisers work to promote images, products, services and brands through visual concepts and strategies.
Job profile of a Visual Merchandiser on the Prospects website
Job profile of a Visual Merchandiser on the National Careers Service website
Job profile of a Visual Merchandiser on the All About Careers website
Community Arts Worker
Community arts worker is more of an umbrella term as job titles tend to relate quite closely to the role or type of work, for example arts development officer, youth engagement officer, youth arts practitioner, and community projects assistant.
Job profile of a community arts worker on Prospects
Job profile of a community arts worker on the TARGET jobs website
Job profile of a community arts worker on the National Careers Service website
icould: Lynda W- Youth Worker
icould: Nathaniel M- Outreach Officer
You may be interested in graduate roles outside of Fine Art. There are many employers who are looking for graduates with good degrees but that don’t have a preference for the subject studied. To explore different career options see:
As well as their subject-specific knowledge and skills, a graduate in Fine Art will typically have gained skills in:
- research and the gathering and evaluation of information
- communicating effectively in oral and written form
- adapting styles for different audiences
- planning, implementing, evaluating and reflecting critically on work-in-progress
- creativity and creative versatility
- analysing, interpreting and showing critical judgement
- attention to detail
- technical and IT skills
This is not an exhaustive list of skills - you will develop many skills from your course, extra-curricular activities and work experience. You can find out more about the skills employers look for and how you can develop them.
Find a job
The Careers and Employability Service provides information and advice on job searching to University of Kent students and recent graduates. This includes a vacancy database advertising a range of graduate jobs, sandwich placements and vacation work/internships and online resources. The websites listed below may also be useful when searching for a job in the criminal justice sector.
Jobs boards listing vacancies
- a-n for industry news, events, resources and jobs
- Arts Council is an organisation that supports a range of artistic and cultural activities.
- Arts Culture Media Jobs A specialised industry vacancy site
- Arts Hub Large listing of arts and creative jobs including internships and work experience. Jobs bulletin is emailed free to members weekly. Free to join. Covers theatre, performance, visual arts, film, TV and radio, writing and publishing, design, music, fashion and the creative industries. Sister websites in the US and Australia.
- Arts Jobs Part of Arts Council England – List of paid opportunities in the arts
- Art Jobs EU includes roles overseas
- Arts Job Finder for industry vacancies
- Arts Jobs Online advertise a variety of national vacancies
- Arts Professional advertise a variety of national vacancies
- Museums Association for paid and voluntary roles in museums
- The Guardian has a vacancy section for arts and heritage vacancies
- The Dots is a vacancy website specialising in creative industries
- Voluntary Arts for a variety of paid and voluntary opportunities
- Artquest provide links to opportunities, networking, extensive ‘How to’ pages and links to international art scene information
- British Council provides links to sites on specific arts areas and articles
- Creatabot is a project that connects, promotes and supports creativity
- Creative Skillset is the industry skills body for the creative industries
- Creative and Cultural Skills includes information on the creative industries and art-related careers.
- Careers in Design offer general advice for the field as well as advertising vacancies
- Ideas Test aims to increase arts participation in Swale and Medway
- Impact Arts is a charity with a focus on helping communities through art
- Nucleus Arts promotes the arts in Medway and Kent
More websites offering graduate jobs, internships and placement years
You may also find useful reviews and application/interview tips for specific organisations on the following websites:
The Job Crowd
Around 15% of Fine Art graduates go on to further study (source). Some may move into related creative areas such as conservation, digital arts or arts management. Some may opt for professional qualifications for a particular career area, such as teacher training or art therapy. Others go on to postgraduate courses to specialise in a particular area of their undergraduate study or so that they can move into research or academia. There is also a range of postgraduate courses open to graduates of any degree subject.