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The beauty of the easiest online art and design careers lie in their wide variety, from graphic design and multimedia art to fashion design and interior design! Indeed, there are as many possible art careers as there are creative professionals creating art and design work with their world-class artistic abilities.
The trick is in forging your unique career path in the vast art and design industry, perhaps even getting into one of the highest-paying art jobs (e.g., art directors).
Need a fast option? Check this out: Fastest Online Art and Design Careers
Art students, whether they are into visual arts or multimedia arts, must then start planning their art and design careers early on. The phrase, “Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration” applies to the best fine artists as it does to scientists, too!
Keep in mind that the easiest art and design careers mentioned here aren’t necessarily “easy” per se, both in terms of the educational attainment and professional experience required. What may be easy for you may be difficult for another person, which means you have to determine your personal interests and professional goals first. You will agree that when you love what you’re studying and doing, then you’re likely to find it enjoyable and easy.
For this listing, we selected 10 art and design jobs that we believe meet the following factors that make them relatively easy:
- The minimum educational requirement for entry-level jobs is a bachelor’s degree or, for floral designers, a short-term training program. Master’s degree requirements are usually reserved for leadership positions.
- The transferable and technical skills required can be learned through a combination of formal education and professional experience that, in turn, make the job more manageable.
- The jobs and their related duties can be performed mostly online or in a work-from-home arrangement; in-person/face-to-face interactions can be kept to manageable levels.
10 Easiest Online Art and Design Careers
Also known as florists, floral designers develop themes and arrange flowers, greenery and other accessories as decorative displays for a wide range of occasions, from corporate events to personal milestones. The flowers and greenery can be fresh, dried or made of other materials like paper and fabric (e.g., silk), while the accessories can be made of plastic, metal or glass (e.g., containers, ribbons and even lights).
Floral designers work with their clients in ensuring that their needs and wants in floral displays are met, from the particular theme and its colors, styles and foliage to the specific date, time and location for delivery. Their work involves extensive knowledge of the specifics of flowers and foliage in season, as well as their styles and symbolisms. Their artistic abilities come to the fore when assembling the flowers and foliage into bouquets, garlands and other styles.
Florists can choose to become employed or self-employed but their primary duties are the same. Other duties include buying flowers and related supplies from suppliers, taking orders from clients, and doing administrative tasks.
Median Annual Salary: $29,880
How to Become One: High school diploma or its equivalent, post-secondary training in community colleges and vocational schools, and on-the-job training
Best Degree and Schools: New York Institute of Art and Design Floral Design Course and Penn Foster Career School Floral Design Program
While writers and authors may not sound like artistic jobs, these are considered creative jobs because of the creativity involved in the development of content in various types of media. Writers and authors create content for traditional and digital media, such as books, magazines, blogs and vlogs, and scripts for plays, television shows and movies, among others.
Their work then takes on many forms, from fiction to nonfiction works, from creative writing to technical writing, and from traditional to digital publications. Depending on their specific work, they perform extensive research in getting the right details, sources and citations, as well as ensuring that the right information and message are delivered to the target audience.
Writers and authors may be employed by companies or are freelancers/self-employed. Their occupations can be classified into biographers, bloggers, content writers, copywriters, novelists, screenwriters, playwrights, and speechwriters.
Median Annual Salary: $69,510
How to Become One: Bachelor’s degree in communication, English or journalism and professional work experience (i.e., with a portfolio)
As an art teacher, you will teach students about art creation, art theory and art history, among other relevant topics. Art teachers are also instrumental in shaping the next generation of professionals who will pursue artistic jobs and, thus, contribute to the productive cycle of artists and designers being made.
Art teachers are also practicing artists with their works of art displayed – and sold – in art galleries and other venues. Their duties include using instructional strategies and techniques in teaching students, assisting students in their artwork presentations and demonstrations, and planning and implementing learning activities.
Median Annual Salary: $52,503
How to Become One: Bachelor’s degree in education, art education, or art history; art teachers at the K-12 level usually have state licensure or certification
As a graphic designer, or graphic artist, you will develop visual concepts that will communicate ideas for information and/or inspiration among the target audience (e.g., general public or specific populations). Graphic designers aren’t just in creative jobs either as their skill sets include the effective and efficient use of computer software, such as layout software, photo editing software, and digital illustration software. Of course, graphic design jobs emphasize the creative aspect, too, since they create eye-catching brochures, advertisements, and reports, among other graphic design works.
Graphic designers also work with an art director, other art and design professionals and clients in determining the project’s parameters.
Median Annual Salary: $50,710
How to Become One: Bachelor’s in graphic design degree or a related field in the fine arts and professional portfolio
Among the most glamorous creative careers – at least, among well-known fashion designers like Giorgio Armani, Donatella Versace, and Ralph Lauren – fashion designers make original clothes, footwear and accessories. As a fashion designer, you will be involved in the entire process from sketching the designs to making the products based on your designs.
Fashion designers must also be on top of the fashion trends – or even better, set the fashion trend. Their duties include theme development for seasonal collections, the use of traditional and digital techniques in design creation, and collaborations with other art and design professionals to bring their collections to life, on and off the runway. Their technical knowledge (e.g., computer-aided design) is matched by their artistic skills, too.
Median Annual Salary: $77,450
How to Become One: Bachelor’s degree in fine arts, fashion design, or fashion merchandising and relevant professional experience with a portfolio.
Best Degree and Schools: Texas Tech University Bachelor of Science in Apparel Design and Manufacturing and Indiana University Bloomington Bachelor of Arts in Fashion Design
As an industrial designer, you will develop designs for a wide range of manufactured products like toys, cars, appliances and electronic products, among others. Industrial designers take an interdisciplinary approach in their work and, thus, borrow from the fields of art and design, engineering and business. Such an interdisciplinary mindset is a must in the creation of products that meet the parameters of both form and function, as well as meet the needs and wants of the clients and their target consumers.
Industrial designers must meet with clients in establishing the product requirements, perform extensive research to support product design; make sketches, renderings and prototypes of products; and collaborate with other professionals during the design process. Their job also involves the use of computer-aided design software to create and evaluate the virtual models before these are made into physical prototypes.
Median Annual Salary: $77,030
How to Become One: A bachelor’s degree in industrial design is an excellent start combined with a professional portfolio
If you’re into beautiful and functional indoor spaces, you should consider a career as an interior designer. While their specific day-to-day duties vary depending on their job title, interior designers usually meet with clients to determine their requirements for their interior spaces.
Interior designers must consider the space itself including its uses and the way that people move in and around it. From these considerations, they will make the preliminary design plans and discuss them with their clients; the discussions can be made online, too. Their design plans also include the furnishings and fixtures, such as flooring, lighting and furniture, and even the plumbing fixtures.
Interior designers must also act as project managers by creating a project timeline and budget, placing orders for the materials and supplies, and coordinating the work of craftsmen and other workers during the installation phase.
Median Annual Salary: $60,340
How to Become One: Bachelor’s degree and professional portfolio created during their studies
If you have a keen interest in and talent for digital media, becoming a multimedia artist may well be in your future. Multimedia artists use graphics technology programs in creating content, specifically special effects and designs, for digital media. Among their works are graphic designs, illustrations, and computer animation, meaning multimedia artists are multi-talented art and design professionals.
Many multimedia artists, however, choose a specific medium in forging their career paths, such as in 3D animation, video games, or television. Regardless of their career path, multimedia artists must ensure the cohesiveness between the images and the intended message.
Their duties include creating the images, such as animation, illustration, or graphics, with the use of computer-aided design software and developing storyboards that correspond to the intended storylines or messages. Multimedia artists also edit their work based on client feedback as well as inputs from other art and design professionals and their team members in the design team.
Most of their duties can also be performed online, thanks to the widespread use of videoconferencing technology, emails and chats. In-person meetings, however, are necessary for some duties like demonstrations and presentations.
Median Annual Salary: $63,548
How to Become One: Bachelor’s degree in multimedia design, computer graphics, or animation, among other related fields, and professional portfolio
If you have sufficient work experience in the art and design industry, you can aspire for a creative director position – and it’s a leadership position that may require a master’s degree in many instances. Creative directors are in charge of the visuals and layout for traditional and digital media content, such as advertisements, brochures and magazines.
Their duties also include making decisions on translating concepts and messages into visual forms like photographs, graphics and artworks. Creative directors must meet with their clients and other art and design professionals to accomplish the goals of the project, keep its costs according to the budget, and meet the project deadlines.
Median Annual Salary: $76,726
How to Become One: Bachelor’s degree in fine arts or graphic design, among other related fields, and a professional portfolio. Creative directors usually have extensive professional work experience to get to their leadership positions.
Ambitious individuals who want to enjoy the perks of one of the highest-paying art careers should consider becoming an art director. Their leadership positions mean art directors are in charge of the overall visual style and impact of artworks produced in collaboration with other art and design professionals.
Art directors determine the design visual elements in the project, decide on the overall style and look of the production, and review and approve the preliminary designs. Their work can include advertising campaigns; sets for films, television shows, and theater productions; and even product designs, among others. Their work demands intensive collaborations with clients, too, as well as their team members whose inputs will influence the overall style, look and impact of the final product.
Median Annual Salary: $100,890
How to Become One: A bachelor’s degree in fine arts, art direction, or communications technology, and other related fields plus professional work experience leading up to the art director position. A master’s degree may be necessary in some cases.
Take a look at this: Highest Paying Jobs in Art and Design
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the minimum level of education to enjoy these easy online art and design careers?
Most of the art careers mentioned here only require a college degree at the baccalaureate level for entry-level positions. Many art careers, furthermore, also require continuing formal education like professional certifications (e.g., graphic design certifications like UX Design Professional Certificate) while others require a graduate degree (e.g., creative directors with a master’s degree in fine arts).
What’s the average cost of earning an art and design education and training?
The costs vary depending on the bachelor’s degree program, the public or private status of the school, and the delivery format (e.g., online, on-campus, or hybrid), among other factors. Note, too, that attending art school can be an expensive endeavor – according to the Department of Education, seven out of 10 of the most expensive institutions are schools!
But the average cost ranges between $22,000 and $24,000 (net of financial aid). Check out your financial aid options and consider high-paying art jobs for a faster return on investment.
What are the licensure and/or certification requirements for art and design professionals?
Most of the easy art and design careers don’t have licensure and certification requirements. Art teachers are a notable exception since states require public K-12 art teachers to be licensed.
What are the types of online jobs for art and design professionals?
Yet another great thing about art jobs is that professional artists and designers have several options in the types of online jobs they can take on. You can become a freelance agent with one or more specializations; a full-time, home-based employee of a single client or company; or a part-time, home-based employee of two or more companies or clients.
What is the job outlook for art and design careers?
The country’s Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that the projected job growth for arts and design occupations is 2% (2021-2031). But with new jobs caused by growth and replacement requirements, the projected job growth is about 94,500 openings every year. The median annual wage for design and art careers is $48,200 (May 2021).
What are the vital skills that art and design professionals must possess?
Like every job, art jobs require a combination of technical and transferable skills unique to every occupation – an art teacher, for example, possesses different skills than a graphic designer. But there are common skills that successful art and design professionals possess including:
- Technical skills are a must among art and design professionals because their jobs require the use of a wide range of media for drawing, painting and writing, among other creative pursuits. Examples include computer software, pen and paper, and crayons and pens. Artists and designers must possess visualization skills and computer skills for this reason.
- Artistic skills include composition, color theory, constructive drawing, perspective, and creative thinking. Design skills include balance, hierarchy, contrast, repetition and alignment.
- Transferable skills include collaboration, critical thinking, and communication skills.
What are the essential steps in starting an art and design career?
Many art students already have their career paths mapped out which enables them to keep their eye on their goals. They know that an art degree is just the first step in establishing a successful art and design career – a master’s and doctoral degrees may be necessary for career advancement in some occupations. Hard work, networking and producing exceptional artworks are also a must in forging a successful career path.
Can you start an art and design career without relevant and/or sufficient work experience?
Yes, of course, since most art jobs at the entry-level only require a bachelor’s degree. But it will be your competitive advantage to present a professional portfolio created from your college days.
How do art and design professionals work online?
Online art jobs usually require a personal computer setup that meets the company’s or clients’ technical specifications (e.g., computer memory, software apps, and Internet speed). You must also comply with job performance expectations, such as scheduled log-ins, deadlines, and performance parameters.
What can you do to maintain a successful art and design career?
The art and design industry is a competitive world with the most successful professionals known for their exceptional work ethics, job performance, and passion for lifelong learning. The best artists and designers are known for their excellent work, of course, but they cannot rest on their laurels – theirs is a need for consistent outputs to stay on top of your game.
So-called easy art and design careers have their own challenges, too, because no meaningful and impactful job is ever easy! But even challenging art and design jobs become easier when you love them, from the time you were pursuing a relevant bachelor’s degree to the time you’re making your mark in the industry.
For additional information: Art and Design Career Guide