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Empowering young creatives to pursue a career in the arts

Creative Careers in… Part 6: Art and Business


Art and Business

Do you want to use your creative skills to help provide a product or service for others? Careers in art and business could involve designing, creating or promoting something. You might be making things in a specific medium or using a certain technique, or selling your skills to help market a product. If you’re passionate about solving a problem or fulfilling a need, there’s a good chance you can get someone to pay for it.

Previous: Art and Entertainment

Wedding photographer

As a professional photographer for a private event such as a wedding, you’ll not only need excellent technical skills but be able to communicate and build rapport with your clients. You’ll need to understand what they want and be able to translate that, within the restrictions of time, money and technical capabilities, into a package they’re happy with. You’re likely to be self-employed and will need to market yourself, so a strong portfolio is essential; creative flair and an innovative style may help you stand out above the competition. But you’ll also rely on recommendation and testimonials so your reputation is important.  You need to be professional, committed and give your clients a good experience.

Visual merchandiser

At a basic level, this role involves window dressing and assisting with displays to promote products in a store.  At a more senior level it would encompass planning the long-term visual strategy including advertising, catalogues and websites, as well as the look of the shops themselves. As a window dresser, you’ll need practical skills and spatial awareness for setting up and taking down displays as well as creativity and an eye for detail. It helps to have a passion for the product in question and an understanding of how customers relate to it. For clothing and department stores, a qualification in fashion design could be useful. Retail experience can also be a way into the role. Whatever the product, you’ll need to keep up to date with trends or developments in the technology, and be aware of who they are being targeted at.


A copywriter writes copy – that is, text or written content, that fulfils a client’s brief. This could be headlines and slogans, scripts, or the main body of a publication, whether that’s a physical leaflet or brochure, or on a website. They usually work alongside an art director who deals with the visuals, i.e. pictures and layout, that go with the copy. You’ll need to enjoy writing and have strong communication skills as well as excellent spelling and grammar and the ability to spot mistakes. You will be able to target your message to appeal to specific groups, so you’ll also need to know your audience and be able to persuade and engage them. You’ll be able to understand your client’s needs, and follow their instructions, and may also have to do your own research. Your ideas will need to be original and imaginative, but you’ll also need strong organisational skills and be able to work to tight deadlines.

Textile Designer

If you love working with patterns, textures and colours and have a passion for fabric, you might enjoy this role. Your designs could be for fashion and clothing, or upholstery and interior decoration. Employers include manufacturers and design companies, but you can also work freelance. You’ll need to be creative, understand the properties of different fabrics and the processes used to create fabric designs, be able to draw and used computer aided design systems. You’ll need to be aware of current trends and fashions.


Don’t forget – if you’re interested in any of these jobs, research them thoroughly. There are some useful links in the first post in this series, Introduction to Creative Careers.


written by Beth Hammond

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