Christian Art: Information About Becoming a Christian Artist

While a college or university degree is not mandatory to become a Christian artist, a program in the fine or graphic arts can provide you with the formal training you need to convey your beliefs in a visual manner. Continue reading for more information about education recommendations and required skills, as well as what you might earn as a Christian artist.

Career Definition for a Christian Artist

A Christian artist is one who uses his or her art and design talents to portray religious scenes and motifs, highlight textual materials, or to explain sacred concepts. Christian artists might work with religious publishing houses to illustrate books or magazine articles, or be responsible for adding decorative motifs to articles used during religious services. They may also serve as entertainers during religious services to illustrate concepts or themes. Additional activities might include participating in architectural and furnishing decisions for churches and related houses of worship.

Education Degree not required, but bachelor's and master's degrees in fine arts widely available
Job Skills Portrayal of religious subjects, knowledge of religious text, fresh approach to traditional imagery
Median Salary (2015)* $46,460 for fine artists
Job Growth (2014-2024)* 3% for fine artists

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Suggested Education

A degree in art is not required to begin working as a Christian artist, but completion of a bachelor's or master's degree program in fine arts can provide students with formal training in design, drawing, painting, and sculpture. Undergraduate and graduate art programs can typically be found at art institutes, colleges, and technical schools, and can help aspiring artists become proficient in a variety of media, such as charcoal, pencil, watercolors, and oils. They can also provide training in desktop editing and publishing for students who want to work with religious art subjects online. Program requirements typically include the development of a portfolio, which can be key to obtaining work as a freelance or staff artist.

Skills Required

Christian artists should have the ability to portray religious subjects in a sensitive manner. A knowledge of and adherence to standard religious texts is also helpful. Taking a fresh approach to typical Christian images may help artists stand out in the job market.

Career and Economic Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job opportunities for fine artists nationwide are expected to increase by just 3% between 2014 and 2024, which is slower than average when compared to all occupations. Competition will be keen, and market-savvy artists with excellent technical skills may enjoy an advantage. In May 2015, fine artists (illustrators, painters and sculptors) earned a median annual salary of $46,460, as reported by the BLS (www.bls.gov).

Alternate Career Options

Consider these alternatives for career options in art:

Art Directors

Art directors oversee the artwork and layouts found in magazines, movies, newspapers, and packaging. A bachelor's degree in a relevant field of study is the minimum educational requirement for obtaining a position; completion of a master's degree program may provide evidence of advanced creative and managerial skills. The BLS has projected a 2%, or slower than average, increase in jobs for art directors nationwide between 2014 and 2024. Candidates with strong portfolios should enjoy the best opportunities. As of May 2015, art directors received median annual wages of $89,760, according to the BLS.

Graphic Designers

The work of a graphic designer can include computer-based or manually created layouts and visuals for electronic and print publications. A bachelor's degree in graphic design, in combination with a professional portfolio, is the usual requirements for entering the field. In comparison to other occupations, job prospects for graphic designers are expected to increase by 1% nationwide, according to the BLS. The BLS also reports that, in May 2015, graphic designers earned median annual salaries of $46,900.


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