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Graduate Creative Arts & Design Jobs

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        Helping you find a career in creative arts & design

        If you're creative and have a good eye for aesthetics, a career in the arts could be for you. This is an industry that values creativity and imagination above all else, so you'll need these in an abundance to make it in this highly competitive field.

        Working in fashion, arts or even graphic design means more than just liking to shop or following the latest design trends. You need to create your own styles and not be afraid to do something different.

        When you start a career in the arts, design or fashion, It's likely you'll assist a person or team who will do most of the creative work. You'll get a chance to see how the industry works, and to see what you'll need to do to successfully create your own designs. You'll learn how to work with all kinds of clients, and to get the best out of yourself and your team.

        Working hours can vary because you'll usually have strict deadlines to meet for clients, shows or your colleagues, so you might have to work nights or weekends to make sure it gets done.

        If you work for a company, it's likely you'll be directed by a manager, with the freedom to your own ideas forward. Make your CV stand out by taking internships or getting involved with different projects.

        Alternatively, if you prefer to work for yourself, you could start your career as a freelancer. This involves working with different clients on a range of projects, you'll be paid agreed sums for your services. Although freelancing gives you greater freedom and flexibility, your income will be solely reliant on your ability to secure projects, which can be quite challenging when you're just starting out in the industry.

        Some jobs you could pursue in the creative arts, design or fashion include:

        • Gallery curator
        • Graphic designer
        • Illustrator
        • Textile designer
        • Fine artist
        • Fashion designer
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        FAQs
        Which skills are needed for a career in the creative arts & design industry?

        Arts, design and fashion jobs are all about creativity. You'll need an open mind, to try new things and to learn from others. You also have meet deadlines promptly and have the ability to work well with a team of people.

        What are typical career progression routes within the creative arts & design sector?

        There's no set progression path in the creative arts. To progress, a combination of networking, determination, talent and the right projects will help you progress. Network with people in the industry, they might be able to introduce you to new opportunities. Keep track of every skill you gain and every success you have, no matter how minor it might seem and shout about them wherever, and whenever, you can.

        What career development opportunities are available in the creative arts & design industry?

        There are various funds you can apply for to help you move forward in your creative career, for example those offered by Creative Skillset. These include programmes supporting talent in TV, film and other areas.

        There are also a large number of professional courses you can take to hone your skills in various creative areas. ScreenSkills is a great resource, with thousands of courses listed on it's website.

        How much do creative arts & design professionals earn?

        Salaries in the creative arts can be lowdue to high competition. Starting salaries for assistants in this field are usually around £13,000. Average salaries for the following roles are:

        • Gallery curator - £27,122
        • Graphic designer - £21,562
        • Illustrator - £22,030
        • Textile designer - £22,127
        • Senior fashion designer - £34,006

        Freelance workers earn on a project-by-project basis, so the sky's the limit, think haute couture fashion designers West End theatre directors. However, there are a many independent creatives earning a lot less, so make sure you're comfortable with financial uncertainty until your big break!

        What qualifications do I need for a career in creative arts & design?

        You don't necessarily need an undergraduate degree in a specific subject to work in this industry. You can supplement your interest in the subject matter with work experience and internships.

        Those with degrees in the following subjects tend to enter this sector:

        • Fashion
        • Design
        • Film making
        • Fine art
        • Illustration

        If that's not you, strategies on how to get there. Masters degrees or other courses can help you achieve your goals.

        How can I enter the industry?

        If your degree is in a specific subject, like a certain branch of fashion design, the roles you can apply for are fairly clear. or example, becoming an assistant designer in a menswear department if you studied menswear design.

        If your qualifications are more general or you studied something else, you can look into masters degrees or postgraduate qualifications in your particular area of interest.

        Two things you'll definitely need are:

        • A strong portfolio: to demonstrate your work and technical ability
        • Work experience: to prove your dedication to your chosen field. Work experience is absolutely essential in this industry, contact companies directly and ask if you can come in to shadow an existing member of staff.
        Creative arts & design industry bodies

        Arts Council England

        Arts Industry

        Arts Hub

        Arts Professional

        Arts Emergency

        Design Council

        British Institute of Interior Design

        UK Web Design Association

        Design Industries Association

        Design Business Association

        Creative Industries Federation

        British Arts Festivals Association

        Performing Arts Network and Development Agency (PANDA)

        Chief Cultural & Leisure Officers Association

        Equity

        ArtWorks Alliance