Fine Artist (Painter, Sculptor)

Fine Artist (Painter, Sculptor)

Career Overview

Fine art is a visual art considered to have been created primarily for aesthetic and intellectual purposes and judged for its beauty and meaningfulness. This can include paintings, sculptures, drawings, or any other type of art.


Although a college degree isn't necessary to do this work, it will likely lead to more success. A four-year bachelor’s degree in fine arts or a related field will likely be very helpful. A master’s degree in a similar field, which would likely take about two-three additional years to earn, would be even more helpful.

Future Outlook

Overall employment of craft and fine artists is projected to show little or no change from 2019 to 2029. Employment growth for artists depends largely on the overall state of the economy and whether people are willing to spend money on art, because people usually buy art when they can afford to do so.

Work Environment

Many artists work in fine- or commercial-art studios located in office buildings, warehouses, or lofts. Others work in private studios in their homes. Some artists share studio space, where they also may exhibit their work.

Recommended High School Courses

  • Psychology
  • Art
  • Business
  • Communication
  • Graphic Arts
  • Marketing
  • Photography
  • Videography

  • Active Learning - Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Communications and Media - Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Fine Arts - Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness - The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
  • Finger Dexterity - The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Manual Dexterity - The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Originality - The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Visual Color Discrimination - The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
  • Visualization - The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Develop artistic or design concepts for decoration, exhibition, or commercial purposes.
  • Build models, patterns, or templates.
  • Construct distinctive physical objects for artistic, functional, or commercial purposes.
  • Arrange artwork, products, or props.
  • Draw detailed or technical illustrations.
  • Collaborate with others to determine technical details of productions.
  • Prepare materials for preservation, storage, or display.
  • Present work to clients for approval.
  • Send information, materials or documentation.
  • Conduct research to inform art, designs, or other work.
  • Coordinate logistics for productions or events.
  • Maintain records, documents, or other files.
  • Estimate costs for projects or productions.
  • Perform marketing activities.
  • Research new technologies.
  • Collaborate with others to prepare or perform artistic productions.
  • Apply finishes to artwork, crafts, or displays.
  • Monitor current trends.
  • Operate still or video cameras or related equipment.
  • Teach classes in area of specialization.
  • Determine technical requirements of productions or projects.
  • Create computer-generated graphics or animation.
  • Entertain public with comedic or dramatic performances.


Alberta College Of Art...
Algoma University- Sau...
Banff Centre For Arts...
Brandon University
Coast Mountain College...
Durham College- Oshawa...
Emily Carr University...
First Nations Universi...
Fleming College- Halib...
Kwantlen Polytechnic I...
Kwantlen Polytechnic U...
Kwantlen Polytechnic U...
Macewan University- Al...
Mount Allison Universi...
Nipissing University
North Island College-...
Nscad University- Foun...
Ocad University
Redeemer University Co...
Renison University Col...
St. Lawrence College-...
St. Thomas University
Trinity Western Univer...
University Of Alberta-...
University Of British...
University Of Lethbrid...
University Of Quebec-...
University Of Windsor-...
Concordia University- L...

Potential Scholarships

5 Strong Scholarship
Agnes M. Lindsay Scholars...

Approx Salary Expectation

Low End:
$22,290.00 /yr
$50,550.00 /yr
High End:
$106,000.00 /yr


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook,
Trend Analysis - Explorer the Market, Labour Market Information, Government of Canada
O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development,