15 high-paying jobs for creative people (2023)

You don't have to suffer for your art— at least not when it comes to salary.There are plenty of high-paying gigs that will reward your creativity to the tune of more than $59,000 a year.

CNBC Make It analyzed data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics to identify 15 occupations focused on creating, designing, or remaking images, products, technology, and information that also come with paychecks as large as $92,000 a year — well above the median salary of $46,800 U.S workers earned in 2018, according to the BLS.

So if you want to be nicely compensated for your design talents, consider one of these 15 jobs:

Makeup artists

1905HKN | E+ | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $59,300
Projected job growth through 2026: 12%

These workers can apply makeup to clients for events like weddings, proms or other events, or transform performers' face and bodies to resemble any character in any time-period, setting or situation. Those who specialize in doing makeup for the stage or theater command higher wages, but many talented makeup artists have found high paying-gigs by working with a celebrity, like Kim Kardashian-West's personal makeup artist Mario Dedivanovic, or through popularizing their work on social media.

Little formal education is required to become a makeup artist, though many do complete a cosmetology program. Any makeup artist who is also a cosmetologist will need to be licensed. Theater degree programs, which typically include courses on stage makeup, can also be another route into the profession.

College art, drama, and music teachers

Hill Street Studios | DigitalVision | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $69,960
Projected job growth through 2026: 12%

These professors typically teach various courses within their field of specialization to students enrolled at colleges and universities. They may also conduct research, publish original research, apply for grants to fund their research, or supervise graduate teaching assistants who are teaching classes.

Depending on the subject taught and the type of educational institution, the kind of educational background a professor needs may be different. Typically a Ph.D. in a subject related to the one they will be teaching is required but a master's degree may be enough for some post-secondary teaching roles at community colleges. However, some university humanities departments may be more interested in the work experience and contributions an applicant has made in the field.

Web developers


Median annual wage: $69,430
Projected job growth through 2026: 15%

(Video) 15 Jobs That Can Make You A Millionaire

These tech workers design and create websites, ensuring a company or client gets the look they desire as well as the performance and traffic capacity needed. Their job can range from helping a client determine what information the site should contain, to writing code or testing applications.

While there is no technical degree requirement for this job, many in the field have at least an associate's degree in web design. Those who complement their design skills with programming languages also easily break into the industry as employers tend to favor developers with those skill sets, according to the BLS.


Cavan Images | Cavan | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $59,480
Projected job growth through 2026: -1%

Strong communication and writing skills are necessary for this occupation, which involves planning, revising and producing content for publication in books, newspapers, magazines or websites.They typically review content for spelling, grammar, factual and structural problems, rewrite content to make it easier to understand, review pitches from writers and assign stories, and help writer's develop new ideas in line with the publication's style and needs.

A bachelor's degree in communications, journalism, or English, combined with previous writing and proofreading experience, is typically required to be an editor, according to the BLS. Employers also typically favor candidates who have worked across multiple forms of media, such as television, websites, or social media, and experience or expertise in the field they're covering.

Writers and authors


Median annual wage: $62,170
Projected job growth through 2026: 8%

Just as the title suggests, these workers make a living effectively conveying stories or information and facts to readers through clean prose in a variety of places such as advertisements, books, guides, manuals, magazines, movies, plays, television scripts, blogs and novels.

While no degree is necessary to write a book, play or other material, many salaried positions in the field do prefer for applicants to have a bachelor's degree in English, journalism, or communications. Some do find their way into the industry through internships or self-publishing content through blogs or other forms of social media.

Film and video editors

Chris Schmidt | E+ | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $62,650
Projected job growth through 2026: 17%

Using video-editing software, these film industry workers arrange video footage to tell a story or convey information. They may collaborate with camera operators and producers and directors on the overall vision for the production, the filming and editing techniques needed to improve a scene, or what is the appropriate equipment, such as the type of lens or lighting, to use.

Many film and video editors have a bachelor's degree in a field related to film or broadcasting, but a clear understanding of digital cameras and video-editing software is most important to land a job.

Industrial designers

Monty Rakusen | Cultura | Getty Images


Median annual wage: $66,590
Projected job growth through 2026: 4%

These workers combine art, business, and engineering to make products that people use every day, according to the BLS. They develop the concepts and designs for all kinds of manufactured products from cars to children's toys. It's their responsibility to consider the functions, aesthetics, production costs, and usability of each of the new products they are creating.

A bachelor's degree, typically in industrial design, architecture, or engineering, is usually required for entry-level industrial design jobs, but the BLS also notes it is important to have an electronic portfolio with examples of your design projects.

Landscape architects

Maskot | Maskot | Getty Images

Median annual pay: $68,230
Projected job growth through 2026: 6%

These architects design parks, gardens, playgrounds, green roofs, and other outdoor spaces for campuses, recreational facilities, businesses, governments and private homes. To do this, they meet with clients, prepare site plans and cost estimates, chose the landscaping materials and analyze environmental reports on land conditions, concerning things like drainage and energy usage.

To become a landscape architect, you'll need at least a bachelor's degree in landscape architecture and a state-issued license, which typically requires completion of an internship.

Producers and directors

bjones27 | E+ | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $71,680
Projected job growth through 2026: 12%

These workers create movies, television shows, and commercials as well as live theater and other performing arts productions. They select scripts or topics for a show, chose actors and other crew members, oversee the design and finances of the production, and then ensure the project stays on schedule and budget.

Most producers and directors have a bachelor's degree, usually in film or cinema, writing, or acting, and several years of work experience in a related-occupation such as actor, film and video editor, or cinematographer.

Technical writers

Hero Images | Hero Images | Getty Images

(Video) 5 Top Careers For Creative People In India 2022 | Job Tips 2022 | MyCaptain

Median annual wage: $71,850
Projected job growth through 2026: 11%

If you've got experience in a field like medicine, engineering, or computer science as well as strong communication skills, becoming a technical writer will earn you a nice salary bump over other writing careers. These writers craft instruction manuals, how-to guides and journal articles to convey complex information more easily to an average reader. To do this, they will often study product samples, speak with the designers and developers, and listen to user feedback.

Employers favor candidates with a bachelor's degree in journalism, English, or communications, though many technical writing jobs do also require workers have either a degree or some knowledge of the scientific field the content they'll be producing pertains to.

Multimedia artists and animators

fotostorm | E+ | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $72,520
Projected job growth through 2026: 8%

These artists create two- and three-dimensional models, moving images, computer-generate images, and visual effects for television, film, video games and other entertainment media. They typically work with clients, such as directors, game designers, or other animators to help create the ideal graphics needed, set development deadlines and edit the animation or effects based on such client's feedback.

Employers favor job applicants with a bachelor's degree in computer graphics, fine arts, animation, or a related field as well as an impressive portfolio of work and strong technical skills, according to the BLS.

Fashion designers

MIGUEL MEDINA | AFP | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $72,720
Projected job growth through 2026: 3%

These workers create original designs for new clothing, footwear or other accessories. They sketch out their ideas and designs, select the fabrics and patterns used in producing the item as well as the production techniques used to bring it to life, and then work the pieces into a collection that will appeal to consumers and retailers.

Most fashion designers have a bachelor's degree in a related field, such as fashion design or fashion merchandising. Developing a strong portfolio, or collection of design ideas that demonstrates your styles and technical abilities, can also help you to land a gig without that educational background since as many employers rely on this when making hiring decisions.

Art directors

Median annual wage: $92,780
Projected job growth through 2026: 5%

These workers are responsible for the visual style of a product. They determine how to best represent a message or concept visually and then determine which photographs, art, or other design elements to use when producing items ranging from product packaging to media like magazines, newspapers, movie and television productions.

(Video) The MOST in demand CREATIVE jobs (which one should you pick?) / MY BEST CREATIVE CAREER DECISIONS

Most art directors have at least a bachelor's degree in an art or design subject and started out in another art-related occupation working their up to a director-level role.


vm | E+ | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $79,380
Projected job growth through 2026: 4%

These workers plan and design houses, factories, office buildings and other structures. They can work on public or private projects and design for both indoor and outdoor spaces. They typically meet with clients to understand the requirements for a structure and then prepare scaled drawings of possible designs as well as the anticipated costs and construction time. If they receive the commission, they then oversee the work site to ensure construction adheres to the architectural plans.

Becoming an architect is a three-step process. First, you must complete at least a bachelor's degree in architecture, gain relevant experience through a paid internship, typically lasting three years, and then pass the Architect Registration Examination.

College English language and literature teachers

Hill Street Studios | DigitalVision | Getty Images

Median annual wage: $66,590
Projected job growth through 2026: 10%

Like college art or music professors, these educators typically teach multiple courses within their field of specialization to higher education students. They may also conduct research, publish original research, apply for grants to fund their research, or supervise graduate teaching assistants who are teaching classes.

Typically a Ph.D. in a subject related to the one they will be teaching is required to become a professor but some post-secondary teaching roles at community colleges require only a master's degree.

Like this story? Subscribe to CNBC Make It on YouTube!

Don't miss: Here are the 15 jobs disappearing the fastest in the US

15 high-paying jobs for creative people (1)


Why Einstein may not have created the theory of relativity if his mom hadn't made him play the violin


Which job is best for creative person? ›

13 jobs for creative people
  • Fashion designer.
  • Copywriter.
  • Advertising manager.
  • Architect.
  • Public relations manager.
  • User experience designer.
  • Art director.
  • Creative director.
17 Apr 2022

What are 10 careers in art? ›

10 Jobs for Artists and People Who Love Drawing
  • Animator. ...
  • Art Teacher. ...
  • Cake Decorator. ...
  • Fashion Designer. ...
  • Graphic Designer. ...
  • Illustrator and Technical Illustrator. ...
  • Industrial Designer. ...
  • Makeup Artist.

What is a unique job? ›

Unique jobs are typically those that require special skills, include odd or unusual responsibilities or have different work environments when compared to the average office job. Unique jobs can be found in a variety of industries and they offer an alternative to professionals who want to deviate from the norm.

What should I do if I am creative? ›

These are some career areas that are generally thought of as creative:
  1. Acting.
  2. Advertising and marketing, particularly areas such as copywriting and content writing.
  3. Architecture.
  4. Art and design, including product, graphic and fashion design, artist, and art gallery curator.

How can I make a living creative? ›

You might also want to see our article on ways to make more money from design.
  1. Sell snaps to stock websites. ...
  2. Sell digital prints on Etsy or Instagram. ...
  3. Start teaching online classes. ...
  4. Set up a Patreon. ...
  5. Make and sell fonts. ...
  6. Get yourself ready.
27 Mar 2020

Is art a good career? ›

Kicking off with perhaps the most obvious of art careers, there is no reason why you cannot pursue a career as a professional artist if you have talent and dedication. You will also need plenty of self-belief, stamina and the ability to promote yourself, as this is a highly competitive career path.

What is a thinking job? ›

The thinking job is what the students should be thinking about as they read the story. Finding the answer to the thinking job will help them with the main idea.

What jobs keep your mind busy? ›

10 intellectually stimulating jobs
  • Technician.
  • Probation officer.
  • Musician.
  • Graphic designer.
  • Social worker.
  • Engineer.
  • Lawyer.
  • Product engineer.
2 Sept 2021

What types of creatives are there? ›

There are eight types of creatives: the Artist, the Thinker, the Adventurer, the Maker, the Producer, the Dreamer, the Innovator, and the Visionary.

Which job is best for arts student? ›

10 Best Jobs for Arts Students
  • Lawyer.
  • Fashion designer.
  • Graphic designer.
  • User experience (UX) designer.
  • Photographer.
  • Animations.
  • Hotel management.
  • Media & journalism.
1 Aug 2022

Can arts student get job in Google? ›

Who can apply for job in Google? Students who're pursuing, completed bachelor's degree, handful experience on any skill can get a call for interview. 10th or 12th passed students can't directly join Google.

What are rare jobs? ›

Here's a quick read of 13 more unusual jobs you might not know exist.
  • Professional Cuddler. Yes, this is a real thing. ...
  • Golf Ball Diver. Basically professional recyclers. ...
  • Online Dating Ghostwriter. ...
  • Hippotherapist. ...
  • Professional Bridesmaid. ...
  • Water Slide Tester. ...
  • Paper Towel Sniffer. ...
  • Face Feeler.
12 Jan 2021

What is the coolest job? ›

Top 8 Coolest Jobs for College Graduates
  • Forensic Scientist. Forensic scientists are the cool people you see on crime scene investigation TV shows and movies. ...
  • Game Designer. ...
  • Cyber Security Specialist. ...
  • Animator. ...
  • Film Critic. ...
  • Astronaut (Space Studies) ...
  • 7. Entertainment Engineer. ...
  • Athletic Trainer.
14 Sept 2021

What is a good dream job? ›

Top 10 dream job ideas
  • Writer/author/critic. If you're a skilled wordsmith, just think of all the pleasurable ways you could earn a paycheck. ...
  • Actor/model/musician. ...
  • Pro athlete. ...
  • Entrepreneur/inventor/CEO. ...
  • Sommelier/food taster. ...
  • Doctor/lawyer. ...
  • Police officer. ...
  • Artist/illustrator.

What is a creative person called? ›

creative person - a person whose creative work shows sensitivity and imagination. artist. creator - a person who grows or makes or invents things. illustrator - an artist who makes illustrations (for books or magazines or advertisements etc.) classic - an artist who has created classic works.

How do I know if I am a creative person? ›

Creative people like to daydream and imagine the possibilities and wonders of the world. They can immerse themselves in imagination and fantasy, yet remain grounded enough to turn their daydreams into reality. They are often described as dreamers, but that doesn't mean that they live with their heads in the clouds.

How can creative people make extra money? ›

56 Creative Ways to Make Money
  1. Create Podcasts. ...
  2. Create and Sell Online Courses. ...
  3. Freelance Online. ...
  4. Be an Online Mock Juror. ...
  5. Join an Online Focus Group. ...
  6. Get Paid to Watch Videos. ...
  7. Take Surveys. ...
  8. Work on Mechanical Turk.
4 Nov 2021

How can I make money with my creative mind? ›

With the cost of living rising, it's a good time to make money online from your creativity.
  1. Sell your work on Etsy. ...
  2. Teach courses on Udemy. ...
  3. Stream games on Twitch. ...
  4. Freelance with Upwork. ...
  5. Design assets for Envato. ...
  6. Sell printables on Redbubble.
26 Jul 2022

What kind of art makes the most money? ›

However, there are popular mediums that typically shine above the rest and tend to sell well in nearly any market: Paintings (Oil paint, Watercolor paint & Acrylic paint) Drawings. Photography.

Is artist a real job? ›

Being an artist is much more than just creating art: it is having that motivation to work as an all-round artist. I sell a lot of paintings a year, so it is really important that my logistics and art supplies remain well organised. I'm very grateful that my job is to be an independent artist.

How do creative thinkers think? ›

Creative thinking is a skill which lets you consider things from a fresh perspective and different angles. It's an inventive thought process which results in surprising conclusions and new ways of doing things. Creative thinking can be aided by brainstorming or lateral thinking to generate ideas.

What are the 5 types of thinking? ›

While we all have unique minds, our tendencies have been summed up into five recognized thinking styles: synthesists, or the creative thinkers; idealists, or the goal-setters; pragmatists, or the logical thinkers; analysts, or the rational intellectuals; and finally, realists, or the perfect problem-solvers.

What jobs require problem solving skills? ›

22 problem-solving jobs for critical thinkers
  • Air traffic controller.
  • Computer programmer.
  • Automotive technician.
  • Police officer.
  • Accountant.
  • Social worker.
  • Geologist.
  • Chemist.

What jobs do smart people do? ›

Best Jobs for Smart People
  • Plastic Surgeon. Average salary: $320,000. ...
  • College Professor. Average salary: $80,000. ...
  • Electrical Engineer. Average salary: $100,000. ...
  • Lawyer. Average salary: $120,000. ...
  • Criminal Investigator. Average salary: $83,000. ...
  • Water Engineer. Average salary: $89,000. ...
  • I.T. Professional. ...
  • Doctor. Average salary: $190,440.
20 Dec 2021

What is the most stress free job? ›

Here are the 10 least stressful jobs, according to CareerCast:
  • Hair stylist.
  • Audiologist. ...
  • University professor (tenured) ...
  • Medical records technician. ...
  • Jeweler. Stress score: 8.95.
  • Operations research analyst. Stress score: 9.02.
  • Pharmacy technician. Stress score: 9.10.
  • Medical laboratory technician. Stress score: 10.31.
12 Jan 2017

What is the most active job? ›

The most physically active job in America is being a dancer, followed by athletes and sports competitors. Using data from the Labor Department's Occupational Information Network (O*NET), we ranked how physically active jobs are based on the average of five variables that measure physical activity.

Is creativity a talent or a skill? ›

Lynda Weinman, founder of Lynda.com: Creativity is a soft skill. Other soft skills include critical thinking, collaboration, and negotiation. It is a skill because it can be learned. It can also be sucked dry out of people when there is too much emphasis on rote learning and standardization.

How do I become a creative genius? ›

How to Become a Creative Genius
  1. Keep a Notebook and Pencil on hand at all times. ...
  2. The second key to creativity is to ask questions. ...
  3. To become a creative genius, you must also be a voracious reader. ...
  4. Seek out new experiences. ...
  5. Become a whole-brain thinker. ...
  6. The final tool for developing your creativity is imaginary dialogue.

What is the most creative personality type? ›

According to the MBTI Manual, creativity correlates most strongly with intuition (N), as well as, to a lesser extent, perceiving (P). This suggests that NPs (i.e., the INTP, INFP, ENTP, & ENFP) are, on average, the most creative of all types.

Is graphic design a high paying job? ›

Design is one of society's most potent visual communication tools, which means there's no shortage of industries that need to hire experienced graphic designers. Graphic design jobs, which have an average salary of $53,380, are among the most versatile for creative professionals.

How can I make my job more creative? ›

How to get your creative career started
  1. Create a portfolio. ...
  2. Know and use industry terms. ...
  3. Develop a personal brand. ...
  4. Use social media as a career tool. ...
  5. Treat volunteer opportunities like entry-level gigs. ...
  6. Related Topics: Job Titles, Compare Salaries, Job Support Center, Career Advice, Find a Job.
9 Jun 2014

What type of design is in demand? ›

We've done our research to bring you the most in-demand design job titles right now.
  • Product Designer. ...
  • Frontend Web Developer. ...
  • Digital Designer. ...
  • User Experience (UX) Designer. ...
  • User Interface (UI) Designer. ...
  • Motion Graphics Designer. ...
  • Graphic Designer.
27 Dec 2021

What is the most paid job? ›

Here are the highest paying jobs of 2022:

Surgeon: $208,000. Obstetrician and Gynecologist: $208,000. Orthodontist: $208,000. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon: $208,000.

Which job is best job? ›

It is an exciting job for professionals who have an interest in fashion and can offer good earning potential and work-life balance.
  • Information security analyst. ...
  • Veterinarian. ...
  • Corporate controller. ...
  • Finance manager. ...
  • Data scientist. ...
  • Professor. ...
  • Psychiatrist. ...
  • Anaesthesiologist. National average salary: ₹11,74,715 per year.

What is a creative career? ›

These are some career areas that are generally thought of as creative: Acting. Advertising and marketing, particularly areas such as copywriting and content writing. Architecture. Art and design, including product, graphic and fashion design, artist, and art gallery curator.

How do I get a creative job without a degree? ›

You can get an artist job without a college education by studying for certifications, taking online courses or bootcamps, and building a portfolio of your work to present when applying for jobs.

How do you become creative full time? ›

What to Know Before Becoming a Full-Time Professional Creative
  1. A technical background helps a lot. ...
  2. Do what you love for fun, first. ...
  3. A good idea won't go away. ...
  4. Allow yourself to say no. ...
  5. Take the time to celebrate yourself. ...
  6. If you're passionate, the rest will come…
5 Jan 2018

What should creative people do? ›

Creative people are devoted to their work, but they are also able to be objective about it. They are willing to take critiques from others, which allows them to separate themselves from their work and find areas that need improvement.

How do you know if you're a creative person? ›

Creative people are by definition extremely bold. Your actions and plans are easily justifiable because they are normally in accordance to what you believe in. Any time you're confronted with something that has a somewhat likelihood of backfiring, you don't run away. You run towards it.

How do you make money in the creative industry? ›

How to Make Money in the Creative Economy
  1. Teach a Specialized Skill. ...
  2. Become an Audience-Supported Creative. ...
  3. "Productize" Your Skills. ...
  4. Publish Content. ...
  5. Create Problem-Solving Tech Tools. ...
  6. Provide a Platform for Other Creatives. ...
  7. Invest in Other Creatives.
26 Jul 2021


1. 6 Most Unique Career Options in India in 2022 | Unique Jobs in India | Best Career Options in India
(Revamp Mind)
2. Best Courses for Creative & Artistic People | Highest Paying Careers 2019
3. 5 High Paying Creative Careers!
4. Best Creative Careers in India | Course Options after 12th | 2021 #CreativeCourses #coursesafter12th
(Le Mark School of Art)
5. 10 Highest Paying Jobs That Don't Require A Degree | बिना डिग्री के लाखों का वेतन देने वाली नौकरियाँ
(Top 10 Hindi)
6. 10 Work From Home Online Jobs For Creative People (2020)
(Ask Destiny)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Carlyn Walter

Last Updated: 10/07/2023

Views: 6344

Rating: 5 / 5 (70 voted)

Reviews: 85% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Carlyn Walter

Birthday: 1996-01-03

Address: Suite 452 40815 Denyse Extensions, Sengermouth, OR 42374

Phone: +8501809515404

Job: Manufacturing Technician

Hobby: Table tennis, Archery, Vacation, Metal detecting, Yo-yoing, Crocheting, Creative writing

Introduction: My name is Carlyn Walter, I am a lively, glamorous, healthy, clean, powerful, calm, combative person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.