Careers That Involve Animals and Art

Jan 19, 2020

For those with a passion for animals and art, there are several careers in different fields that involve both. We discuss the job duties, median salaries and other details of some of the available careers involving animals and art.

Career Options that Involve Animals and Art

While most careers that involve animals and art are creative and artistic jobs, some positions exist in other fields. Some of these careers may involve working directly with animals, while others draw inspiration from animals. Explore a few of the available careers that involve both animals and art below.

Job Title Median Salary (2018)* Job Growth (2018-2028)*
Fine Artists (including Painters, Sculptors and Illustrators) $49,380 1%
Photographers $34,000 -6% (decline)
Recreational Therapists $47,860 7%
Fashion Designers $72,720 1%
Animal Care and Service Workers $23,950 16%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Information for Careers that Involve Animals and Art

Fine Artists (including Painters, Sculptors and Illustrators)

Fine artists draw inspiration from a variety of subjects in the world, including animals. These artists may paint, sculpt or draw animals that they observe or recall from memory or photographs. They use a variety of artistic techniques, like color, perspective and space, to make the piece unique. Fine artists usually display their work in galleries and/or sell their pieces to clients, as well as adding their work to their professional portfolio that they use to attract clients. Many fine artists hold a bachelor's or master's degree in fine arts and spend a long time perfecting their craft.


Photography is often considered an artistic outlet, and many photographers choose to photograph animals, whether they work as wilderness photographers or take portraits of pets. Most photographers use digital cameras and utilize photo-enhancing software to produce high-quality images that may be sold, displayed or included in different media. Similar to fine artists, photographers maintain a professional portfolio and usually need to advertise their services and work to attract clients. Some kinds of photographers need a bachelor's degree, but all photographers need to understand the technical side of photography.

Recreational Therapists

While they don't necessarily need to be artistic themselves, recreational therapists may utilize art and animals to help treat their patients. These therapists treat a variety of patients who are disabled, injured or ill through the use of recreational activities, like arts and crafts, equine therapy, canine therapy, sports, aquatics and more. They help their patients gain social skills by participating in the activity and overcome emotional issues like anxiety, stress or depression. They usually must have a bachelor's degree and certification from the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC).

Fashion Designers

Fashion design is an artistic career that pulls inspiration from our world to create various articles of clothing and accessories. Animals are a frequent influence on fashion designers' designs, and some fashion designers even include animal prints and faux or real furs, feathers and other animal products in their pieces. Fashion designers usually choose a theme for a collection and start by sketching their designs, then oversee the entire production process in order to sell their clothes to consumers or retailers. They need a bachelor's degree in the field and an understanding of the production process.

Animal Care and Service Workers

Animal care and service workers care for and interact with a variety of animals on a daily basis, but some positions, such as groomers or animal trainers, may allow for artistic or creative work. Groomers bathe pets, clip their nails and clean their ears and may have some artistic freedom as they cut and style an animal's fur, depending on the preferences of the animal's owner. Animal trainers may train dogs, horses, marine mammals or other animals for performances in movies or TV shows, competitions or work as a service animal. Animal care and service workers usually need a high school diploma and experience with animals, but some positions may require a bachelor's degree.

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