High Paying Careers for Artistic People

Artistic individuals seeking high-paying careers have several options, depending on their other interests and how long they're willing to stay in school. Find out more about job options and salary potential.

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High-Paying Careers for Artistic People

There are a large number of careers that artistic people may be well-suited for, beyond the traditional role of a fine artist. Individuals who also want to earn a high salary have slightly more limited options, since traditional art careers are often not as high-paying as careers within the math and science industries, except for very elite artists. However, we will discuss five high-paying art careers below, all of which came with a salary significantly higher than the 2016 median across all careers of $37,040, per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2016-2026)*
Film and Video Editor $62,760 16%
Multimedia Artist/Animator $65,300 10%
Art Director $89,820 7%
Architect $76,930 4%
Fashion Designer $65,170 3%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Information About High-Paying Careers for Artistic People

Film and Video Editor

As a film and video editor, you may work in the TV or film industry and be responsible for editing film to create TV shows, movies, and other types of videos. You will be responsible for making sure the film is organized correctly and will need to be knowledgeable in how to use a number of different video editing software programs. Film and video editors usually need to be artistic or creative in order to edit the film in a way that fulfills the vision of the project, which may include using artistic editing styles. These professionals made a median salary of $62,760 in 2016 and typically need a bachelor's degree in a field like communications or film.

Multimedia Artist/Animator

As a multimedia artist or animator, you will generally create visual designs and animation using different types of computer software, as well as by hand. Many of these artists and animators work in the film, TV, and video game industries, creating animated characters and scenes for shows, movies, and games. Some may specialize in a certain area, like CGI, or in video game development. Multimedia artists and animators made a median salary of $65,300 in 2016. A bachelor's degree in a field like computer graphics or fine arts is usually necessary to obtain a job in this field.

Art Director

Artistic individuals who are also very organized and enjoy managing other people may be interested in pursuing a career as an art director. Art directors work in many industries, like film, print publication, and the production of various types of products. They are responsible for making all the decisions regarding the visual and artistic aspects of the project, like designing the set of a movie, the layout of a magazine, or the packaging of a new product. These professionals made a median salary of $89,820 in 2016. Generally, you will need a bachelor's degree in a field like art or graphic design, along with a significant amount of work experience, to find a job as an art director.


As an architect, you will be responsible for designing new structures, from residential homes and apartment buildings to government buildings and office facilities. You will typically work closely with clients in order to understand how they want a structure to look. Next, you will use your artistic ability to bring their vision to life, usually by hand and then with the help of specialized architectural software. Architects made a median salary of $76,930 in 2016, though the top ten percent of architects made over $129,810. To become an architect, you will need to complete either a Bachelor of Architecture degree program or a master's degree in architecture before being eligible for internships and professional licensure.

Fashion Designer

Fashion designers may have their own brand or may work for a larger fashion brand that designs items like clothing, purses, shoes, and other types of accessories. Being artistic is important in this field, since fashion designers often must draw designs and create prototype designs by hand, as well as staying on top of current trends in the fashion industry. These designers made a median salary of $65,170 in 2016. To become a fashion designer, you will often need a bachelor's degree in a field like fashion merchandising or fashion design.

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