After dedicating many years to studying and creating stunning works at art school, you might question the next best steps after graduating. It is a predicament many students find themselves in, as they might wonder if they should dedicate their lives to becoming full-time artists or pursue a different career.

It is normal to feel overwhelmed, especially as your art degree will have been your primary goal for many years. Yet, you have plenty of options available, and many could even use your artistic skills. Read the following tips on what to do after art school.

Consider What You Want

The first step you must take is to figure out what you want to do after an art degree. If the passion is alive and well to pursue a career as a full-time artist, you must find new opportunities to showcase your talents.

For example, you could join a short- or long-term artist residency program to create stunning works of art at your own pace. However, if you don’t want to embark on a career as a full-time artist, you may need to consider other opportunities that fit your skill set.

Take Your Pick from Many Creative Careers

An art degree lends itself perfectly to many creative careers. For example, you could use your drawing skills to become a professional tattoo artist. Each day you permanently craft your stunning designs onto people’s skin, which they will adore throughout the decades. You can trust you will feel a sense of satisfaction each time a customer’s jaw drops when looking at a tattoo for the first time. You will need dependable tattoo machines combined with your skills to create amazing work. Alternatively, you could use your creative skills to become a curator, art teacher, photographer, illustrator, or interior designer. The opportunities are endless.

Create a Professional & Diverse Portfolio

It doesn’t matter if you want to become a full-time artist, a curator, or a tattoo artist; you must take the time to create a professional portfolio that will blow people away. Every artist, regardless of their industry, must develop a catalog of their proudest work to date, which could increase their likelihood of securing a new job, a gallery exhibition, or a residency.

Try to create a diverse portfolio to showcase your different skills, styles, and personality, which could boost your industry reputation. If you don’t have much professional experience, highlight your talent by setting yourself a project and creating design mock-ups.

Build a Positive Online Presence

Set yourself apart by building a positive online presence. Make it your mission to spread the good word about your artwork, designs, or photos to grab media attention, increase sales, or secure countless customers.

For example, you could start a website and promote your work on social media. It could encourage an art dealer to buy your work, convince a customer to request a tattoo, or lead to a happy couple hiring you to photograph their wedding day. A well-timed Instagram post or TikTok video could shape your career so use it where you can.

Image credit: Rahul Jain via Unsplash


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