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Artist—Career Q&A: Professional Advice and Insight

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Visual artists convey thoughts, opinions, and ideas through their work, whether it is a realistic painting, a piece of pottery, or an abstract sculpture. They use one or more media, such as clay, paint, metal, or computer technology, to create two- or three-dimensional works. The field of visual arts is usually separated into three categories: commercial art, fine art, and craft. There are approximately 28,000 fine artists (including painters, sculptors, and illustrators), 12,800 artists and related workers, 12,500 craft artists, 73,700 multimedia artists, and 266,300 graphic designers employed in the United States. Most artists are self-employed.

Salary Range

Below $25,000 to $100,000+

Minimum Education Level

High School Diploma




About as Fast as the Average
Personality Traits




Career Ladder
Well-Known Artist, or Art Teacher, or Art Critic

Working Artist

Aspiring Artist

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