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Career Services - Students

Art Major

Career Information

Possible Job Titles

Technical

  • Conservator/restorer*
  • Fine arts handler
  • Appraiser
  • Arts consultant
  • Design consultant
  • Historical preservation coordinator*
  • Artist-in-residence

Business/Industry

  • Industrial designer*
  • Fashion designer*
  • Interior designer*
  • Executive search consultant
  • Gallery operator
  • Consumer goods salesperson
  • Marketing manager
  • Marketing consultant
  • Animator
  • Media consultant
  • Commercial artist
  • Cinematographer
  • Art director
  • Computer programmer*
  • Publicist
  • Web Designer

Education/Communication

  • Teacher
  • Professor*
  • Librarian*
  • Curator*
  • Grants specialist
  • Art critic
  • Graphic artist/layout editor*
  • Photographer
  • Exhibit designer
  • Information specialist
  • Arts programmer (TV/Radio)
  • Arts writer/reporter
  • Book/journal editor
  • Cartoonist
  • Film/video engineer

Human Services/Management

  • Arts therapist*
  • City cultural events planner
  • Museum director*
  • Archivist*
  • Arts council director
  • Preservation council director
  • Community arts center director

*Denotes need for additional education

ANIMATOR

Creates movement for a visual still using illustration skills and computer applications. Most animation sequences are produced for films and entertainment; some are used for industry (i.e. creating logos for television networks or translating machinery drawings into three dimensions). Works for animation studios or on a freelance basis.

ART BUYER/CONSULTANT

Assists other people in buying art. Recruits clients, develops familiarity with wide variety of artistic styles, and maintains network of contacts among artists and gallery owners. Interviews clients about artistic preferences and presents options to them. Works for consulting firms or on freelance basis.

ART DIRECTOR, ADVERTISING

Creates a visual concept that can be developed into a successful print ad, television commercial, or sales campaign. Analyzes market research data and client specifications and works closely with copywriters. Creates layouts and presents to creative directors or possibly to clients. Works with an illustrator or photographer to develop a final visual. Works for advertising agencies.

ART DIRECTOR, EDITORIAL

Directs art and visuals for books, magazines, and newspapers according to specified guidelines. Supervises layout and selects illustrators or photographers to execute the visual effects. Works for publishing companies.

ART TEACHER

Instructs students in art skills. Evaluates student artwork and offers constructive criticism and advice concerning future work. May help with curriculum planning. Works for public/private schools or community education programs.

BOOK DESIGNER

Organizes a book's format to establish a coherent flow and to make the text inviting to read by designing an aesthetically pleasing page within the restrictions of length, paper weight, and trim size. Chooses a typeface, designs a layout, and may create a book cover. Works for publishing companies.

CARTOONIST

Uses humorous illustration style to entertain or convey information. Works for comic book publishers, newspaper syndicates, or on a freelance basis.

CORPORATE DESIGNER

Helps a company establish its identity through graphic representation. Works on a wide range of assignments, such as logo development, letterhead design, or illustrating brochures or annual reports. Works for variety of companies.

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Coordinates overall look of an advertising project. Works closely with art director and copywriter to ensure consistency of final product and adherence to deadlines. Works for advertising agencies.

CRITIC

Writes articles giving critical analysis of artwork, exhibitions, or art-related issues. Usually writes on a freelance basis and supplements with teaching or museum work. Works for newspapers, magazines, museums, or on freelance basis.

EXHIBITION DESIGNER

Designs displays and exhibits for events such as conventions, museum shows, and supermarket promotions. Uses artistic design skills and knowledge of traffic flow and lighting to create original presentations of objects, ideas, and information. Usually works on a freelance basis.

FINE ARTIST

Creates original artworks using a variety of mediums, such as sculpture, painting, or ceramics. Sells work to individuals or organizations. Works on freelance basis.

FORENSIC ARTIST

Draws sketches of suspected criminals based on descriptive information from crime victims. Works closely with police officers and other law enforcement officials. Works for federal, state, or local government.

GRAPHIC SYSTEMS DESIGNER

Develops symbols and signs to unify a building or public complex (i.e. shopping center, subway) and make it easier to navigate. Also works with architects to design interior and exterior environments. Works for architectural or design firms.

ILLUSTRATOR, ADVERTISING

Sells products or services by creating an appropriate image for the market the client is trying to reach. Considers headlines, copy, and visual ideas and makes a preliminary sketch. Works with art director to establish size and color limitations and completes illustrations by a specific deadline. Works for advertising agencies or on a freelance basis.

ILLUSTRATOR, EDITORIAL

Considers manuscript and visual ideas and makes a preliminary sketch. Works with art director to establish size and color limitations and completes illustrations by a specific deadline. Works for publishers or on a freelance basis.

INDUSTRIAL DESIGNER

Designs commercially produced products, ranging from electronics to toys. Works with corporations to style or package products that attract consumers. Acts as a negotiator between engineers and marketing representatives. Works for variety of companies.

MAGAZINE DESIGNER

Consults with editor and publisher on editorial objectives and the consumer market. Determines a format, selects typeface, and establishes approach toward photography and illustration. May redesign already established magazines. Usually works on a freelance basis.

PACKAGE DESIGNER

Designs packaging for variety of products. Often redesigns an existing package by changing color or type treatment or using graphics. Creates three-dimensional prototype to ensure package efficiency. Usually works on a freelance basis.

SKETCH ARTIST

Draws quick sketches and first drafts for print or live-action advertisements. Works for advertising agencies.

TELEVISION GRAPHIC DESIGNER

Designs images to introduce sports events, nightly news stories, or specials. May use computer technology to produce charts, graphs, or illustrations. Works for television studios.

TOY DESIGNER

Uses imagination and childlike perspective to create new toys. Researches safety standards, child psychology, production, packaging, and promotion to create products that are safe, cost-effective, and fun. Works for toy manufacturers.

TYPEFACE DESIGNER

Creates new typefaces, often using computer graphics. May modify existing typefaces by creating new weights and proportions or developing new logos for clients. Works for type manufacturers, design studios, and advertising agencies.

Typical Places of Employment

  • Advertising firms
  • Historical societies
  • Architectural firms
  • Libraries
  • Art galleries
  • Magazines & newspapers
  • Boat yards (woodworking)
  • Museums
  • Business corporations
  • Photography studios
  • City, state or federal government.
  • Art lessons
  • Garment industries
  • Publishing companies
  • Community organizations
  • Retail stores
  • Colleges, schools &universities
  • Teaching hospitals and law firms (medical illustration for court cases)

Typical Work Activities And Behaviors

  • Composing, writing
  • Working independently
  • Acting, performing
  • Decorating, designing
  • Publicizing
  • Teaching
  • Curating exhibits
  • Image digitization
  • Grant writing
  • Creating artwork
  • Organizing exhibits

Additional Info in Career Services

These publications must be used in the "Browsing" Library of Career Services. There are also many brochures and magazines such as Resume Writing, Interviewing and Job Choices that you may take with you.

To see a complete list of career books located at the Career Services Office click here.

  • Building a Career as a Visual Artist
  • 100 Best Careers for Writers and Artists
  • Careers for Cultural Lovers and Other Artsy Types
  • Career Opportunities in Art
  • Careers in the Visual Arts
  • Careers for Shutterbugs & Other Candid Types

To see a complete list of career books located at the Career Services Office click here .

  • Graphic Design: A Career Guide and Education Directory
  • Graphic Design Career Guide
  • Great Jobs for the Art Majors
  • How To Survive and Prosper as an Artist
  • The National Resource Guide for the Placement of Artists

Alumni Resources

(Listed below are examples of SU Alumni and their Jobs in this major-For more alumni resources, go to Mentor Network)

ALUMNI NAME GRAD DATE ORGANIZATION CURRENT JOB
Jaclyn Coldwell 2005 Patuxent Publishing Graphic Designer
Holly Shiflett 1992 Spectrum Pacific Learning Company Associate Director of Client Services
Jason Masten 200 Brown University Technology Coordinator
Jennifer Webb 1999 Neiman Group Production Manager
Victoria Siegel 1996 How It Works Web Designer

Related Links: Further Explore this Career Field

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