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What precautionary steps should I take to be an artist an also financially stable?

I'm an sophomore student and I wish to pursue a career in art and illustration, I know it's tough to do what a love and be able to support myself, any extra steps i can take to make sure I can support myself? #fine-artist #illustrator #artist

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Subject: Career question for you

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Precious’s Answer

You need to intern in a company that’s in your field of expertise learn as much as you can, because that could turn into a full or part time job. Open a webpage and display or art, that can be the beginning of your collection of work. Start researching jobs to see what qualifications they are looking for so you can prepare yourself. Start looking at other Illustrators works so you can get an idea of what you need to build on to get you started. Remember talent is the first step hard work is the second. You can start as an entry level and work your way up.


As for supporting yourself it’s hard as an artist I should know I’m one but I took on other skills while preparing to be an artist. Get jobs in the art word that way you ahead of the game. What other skills do u have that will get your foot in the door and push you towards were you want to be. Some times you have to combine both.


1Here’s a step you can do now research the company you see yourself in. 2. Contact the the head of the company and explain what it is you are looking for and ask if you can have a meeting with someone in that field to show you around so you can see what it is you need to accomplish your goal and that is to work for their company. 3. Prepare your illustrations to be seen and reviewed. 4 take notes it shows you are serious. 5. You just began working towards your goal. Best wishes.

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Carol’s Answer

You're in the perfect position to start evaluating individuals who are in the career path you desire, and see how they got to that position from a clinical perspective. Position yourself in a way where your job opportunities will be wider and less niched. Otherwise, if you put all your eggs in one basket (wanting to be a creature illustrator for a specific movie franchise, with only 4 open positions for that role), your percentage rate of not getting in is extremely small. You need to understand that, the more you limit your job opportunities, the more you create a frailer financial support for you, which will inevitably affect your mental health and your focus to make good work.

Look into conventions and events you can participate, whether their physical or digital events. Join some good Discord groups for Illustrators (I know Bobby Chiu, an amazing artist and teacher in the illustration industry, has some really affordable classes and a Lightbox discord group that you can start on. IAMAG classes are more expensive, but incredibly high-quality content; I'd recommend saving for a subscription or class that can help you make a portfolio piece out of). Network with genuine interest; don't make it seem like you're talking to people to nab a job, but because you're genuinely interested in someone else's story, upbringing, and how they got where they are (you can always learn from the successes AND failures of others). And start putting your work out there. I'll always love the parallel of the pottery students who showed that quantity trumped quality (https://austinkleon.com/2020/12/10/quantity-leads-to-quality-the-origin-of-a-parable/). Make your exercises feel like that: exercises. Save your judgement for your final pieces or professional portfolio.

You don't need to follow a traditional path. Heck, you could even start working before you're done with college (saves you money). This industry is all about what you can offer at that moment. Just make sure that your armed with contacts, and network, and wisdom from individuals ACTIVELY WORKING in the industry you want to join. Wishing you the best and, although it sounds like this might be a bit all over the place, I hope it gives you some fundamental building blocks to let your desires and wishes actualize in your future.

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Jevons’s Answer

Hi Cas,

Here is my suggestion.

When you are a student, try to be a freelance illustrator.

In the last two years of college, you will know if you have the ability to financially stable, and it isn't easy.

Also you can intern in a company, and keep create with your own time.

As long as you persist, you will one day get the desired results.

Good luck!
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