Art and Design

Art and Design Image

Do you have creative flair and like to use your imagination? Maybe you enjoy designing or making things using different materials? If you have good practical ability, or always have some sort of creative idea going through your head, then art and design is a great career area for you to think about. 

Artists and designers are involved in designing and creating almost everything we buy, from book covers to high fashion and furniture. They create works of art in many different forms, from paintings and textiles to sculptures and photographs.

In September 2021, the UK creative industries had an estimated 2.29m jobs, accounting for 6.9% of all jobs in the UK.

What areas can I work in?

According to the Student Art Guide, there are over 150 careers to choose from in art and design!

You can work in areas such as furniture design, book illustration, animation, or household appliance design to fashion design and special effects for films and TV.

Art and design roles fall into the following areas: 3 dimensional design, fashion or textile design, fine art or graphic design, interior design or display and photography.

To see the routes to getting into each of these sectors, take a look at our Career Pathway.

What kind of companies can I work for?

Possible employers include: 

What’s the job market like?

There is a huge amount of competition for full time work in the art and design world, with many people working on a self-employed or part time basis. 

Art and Design graduates often find it takes time, and relevant work experience, to build up a portfolio and develop the contacts for freelance or commissioned work. So, it’s not always easy to make a living, and many artists take on other jobs with a steady income so they can survive when freelance work is in short supply.

The Creative Industries UK states that the UK has the largest design sector in Europe and the second largest design sector in the world. 

Design in the UK is at the forefront of new developments, with design services increasingly employed in healthcare, for the digital age, or for services.

In Scotland, as of December 2021, there were 3,300 people working as full time professional artists, 5,800 as graphic designers, and 8,000 as product, clothing and related designers.

Facts and figures

Want to find out more?

Why not take a look at the Discover Creative Careers website for information on getting into the arts? You will find information specifically about visual arts and crafts careers. You can also find detailed information about entry into the animation careers by visiting the ScreenSkills website.



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Career Pathway

Art and Design Career Pathway
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