Alternative ways to carve out a career in art and design
The art and design industry is diverse to say the least – it leaves its mark in everything from public museums and galleries to content publishing. According to the Creative Industries Federation, the art and design industry in the West Midlands is growing 46% faster than the rest of the UK economy.
You might be after an industry specific job, where you create original artwork for an organisation, but with a third of the sectors’ workforce working for themselves, there are lots more routes into art and design you may not have considered. Keep reading to discover just a few of these.
Illustrators typically create pieces of art through paint, drawing or computer software and they tend to specialise in one of these areas. It would be pretty difficult not to come across their work – it can be found in a variety of products, including books, greeting cards, clothes and animations. However, there are also specialist areas you could focus your efforts, such as medical and scientific illustration, where art is found in textbooks, medical journals and corporate documents.
Illustrators often use their art to convey a message, story or idea, which can be personal and very expressive. Their artwork is usually inspired by what they’re passionate about – which could be politics, music or film. Is there anything you’ve always wanted to illustrate?
Theatre, film and TV
There are lots of opportunities within the theatre, film and TV industry to put your creative talents to some use. Set designers, make-up artists and costume designers all contribute to creating fantastically realistic sets that transport you to magical worlds.
Behind the glamour of all this, is lots of research, concept art and illustrations, set design models, drawing and blueprints, which designers get to work on very early in the production process. It’s important their vision is executed properly, as they are often behind the masterpieces you see on your screens!
It is difficult not be influenced by typography. We see different fonts and lettering everywhere we look and they can have an astounding impact on whether we choose to invest our time in what they’re trying to communicate. Most businesses that invest in branding will spend time picking the right font that suits the personality of their business and will consistently use it across their branding or marketing materials.
Typographers design and develop fonts that we all use. There are some fonts that are universal; for example, the font Helvetica is one of the most popular in the world, whilst Comic Sans can be the source of many a heated discussion! What’s your favourite font?
Tattoo art is becoming much more popular in the UK with changing attitudes towards the industry thanks to popular programmes such as, ‘Tattoo Fixers’. This has lead to a rise in people wanting tattoos, but also people wanting a career as a tattooist.
Tattoo artists design and then apply the artwork using specialist ink and needles. It requires a very skilled eye and lots of patience, depending on the detail of the design. Artists might choose to work for a studio, or simply rent a chair and bring in their own clients. It’s important to have a strong portfolio of designs, as you’ll never know who (or what) is looking to get inked next – like our student Kyra Cleeton, who will have her tribal art recreated onto a car, after winning a Lexus design competition!
Whilst talent can provide you with an array of career options, a specialist art and design course can take your talent further. At Walsall College, we have fully equipped art workshops, as well as painting and drawing studios; ready to help you paint the right picture. Here is just some of the amazing artwork created by our talented students.
You also have the opportunity to stay on to achieve HNC/HND, Level 5/6 courses, which are equivalent to a university level degree.