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Art Careers in Science

Different fields of science offer the opportunity for artists or those interested in art to put their interests and talents to use. Find out about some of the art careers in science, as well as their median salaries and education requirements.

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Art Career Options in Science

Although art and science seem to be subjects on the opposite ends of the spectrum, there are several careers that combine the two. These professions vary greatly in job duties and may require artistic talent, knowledge of art, scientific knowledge and/or research skills. Learn about some of the available art careers in science below.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2016-2026)*
Photographers $34,070 -8% (Decline)
Fine Artists (Including Painters, Sculptors and Illustrators) $50,790 9%
Anthropologists and Archeologists $63,190 3%
Architects $76,930 4%
Conservators (Including Museum Technicians) $40,040 12%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Information for Art Careers in Science

Photographers

There are various kinds of photographers, including scientific photographers who specialize in photographing medical and/or scientific phenomena. Often this requires them to use a microscope to capture digital images of microscopic subjects. Scientific photographers need their images to be as accurate and realistic as possible, so they tend to limit their use of photo enhancing software and editing. Scientific photographers usually need a bachelor's degree, while other kinds of photographers may not need a formal education.

Fine Artists (Including Painters, Sculptors and Illustrators)

Similar to photographers there are many different kinds of fine artists, but medical and scientific illustrators specialize in drawing images for various scientific disciplines. They may draw their images by hand or use a computer to create visuals for textbooks, court cases, and scientific publications. These illustrators may need to draw pictures of human anatomy, animals, geologic formations, atoms, plants and more. Medical and scientific illustrators need at least a bachelor's degree and background knowledge in science.

Anthropologists and Archeologists

Anthropologists and archeologists are scientists that may specialize in studying art and other cultural remains of a civilization to learn more about the origin and development of humans. While they may not themselves be artistic, these scientists should have a background in art to observe and study the works of current civilizations and/or collect artistic artifacts from excavation sites. They analyze these pieces and report their findings in scientific articles and reports. Anthropologists and archeologists need a master's or doctorate degree in their respective field and experience with fieldwork.

Architects

Architects fuse art and science through their designs of houses, buildings and other structures. They use art to create scaled drawings with a computer or by hand, but must utilize their knowledge of physics and other sciences to ensure that the measurements and specifications for the design will work in the real world. Architects are also responsible for estimating budgets and construction time, handling construction contracts and ensuring that construction is following the architectural designs. Architects must earn a bachelor's degree and gain experience before passing the Architect Registration Examination.

Conservators

Conservators use science to preserve and treat pieces of art and other artifacts in a museum. They must understand chemistry and other sciences to minimize deterioration of these items and/or work to restore them to their original conditions. They also conduct scientific research and are trained to use microscopes, chemical testing, x-rays and other techniques to examine items and figure out how to conserve them. Conservators need a master's degree in conservation and a background in science and art.

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