We were asked to look up several careers within the industry we want to get into and look at what their requirements were, the salary and the duties involved with each career, i chose to look at an Art Director, an Illustrator and a Gallery/Museum Curator.

I found creative pool to be an excellent website for looking into career profiles, i found most of my information on there:

Art Director:

  1. Salary =  may range from around £15,000 to £25,000 a year for new advertising art directors, to over £100,000 for successful art directors in leading agencies.
  2. Duties=
    • working from a brief with a copywriter, generating ideas to present to the client
    • working on designs to produce an effective advertising campaign
    • commissioning specialists, such as artists and photographers, to work on projects
    • managing projects and working within a budget
    • editing the final results for presentation to the client.
  3. Requirements=
    • be highly creative
    • have a thorough understanding of photography, typography and printing
    • have excellent interpersonal and communication skills
    • work well as part of a team, with a range of people
    • have an interest in social and cultural trends and fashions.
  4. Qualifications=There are no set qualifications to become an advertising art director, but entrants usually have a degree. Art and design degree courses are available at universities and art colleges throughout the UK. Many students first take a foundation course in art and design. They are usually expected to have a portfolio of their art and design work.Training is normally in-house, under the supervision of more experienced colleagues. Some agencies may require entrants to take the IPA foundation certificate, which is designed to give an overview of advertising and the specific roles within the industry.
  5. Working hours=Advertising art directors normally work between 9am and 6pm, Monday to Friday. However, extra hours are often required so they must be flexible and prepared to work evenings and weekends.Art directors spend most of their time working indoors, in offices or studios. They also travel to meet clients and visit television studios or other locations where advertisements are being filmed. Working on location may involve staying away from home for short periods.Dress code expectations vary between agencies, but are often quite informal.

Companies that have art directors include:

  • The NHS
  • Saatchi
  • JWT
  • The BBC
  • Blue print

 my cousin was an Art Director at JWT, apparently the larger the company you work for the larger the demand is on your time and expertise!



  1. Salary= Salaries for employed illustrators working full time may range from around £14,000 to £40,000 a year. Self-employed illustrators are paid for each project or illustration. Most illustrators are freelance.
  2. Duties=Most illustrators specialise in a particular style. There are various different stages in their work, including:
    • discussing client needs and identifying a target audience for the work
    • agreeing the brief and contract with the client
    • developing visual ideas that suit the brief
    • seeking client approval for ideas with rough visuals – this stage may involve going back to the drawing board several times to rework sketches
    • using drawing, sketching, painting and photographic skills to produce illustrations.
  3. Requirement=
    • excellent drawing and IT skills
    • to be able to work to a brief, solve problems creatively and adapt their style
    • creativity and imagination
    • to enjoy creative work.
  4. Qualifications=There are no set entry requirements to become an illustrator. It is important to have a high level of illustration ability, an extensive portfolio of quality work and self-promotional skills to obtain work. Most illustrators have an HND, Foundation degree or degree in an art and design subject such as illustration, graphic design or fine art.

    Illustrators can take a number of specialist courses to develop their skills in areas such as technical, book and sequential illustration, and animation. The Association of Illustrators offer practical support to illustrators and a range of classes for freelancers.Most freelance illustrators remain self-employed. Success depends upon building a strong reputation and securing a steady flow of work. Some illustrators broaden their business by developing skills in related areas such as graphic design, animation and cartoons. There may be opportunities for illustrators in employment to become art directors, design managers or heads of departments.

  5. Working hours=Illustrators in employment usually work from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. The working hours of freelance illustrators vary depending on deadlines and quantity of work.

    Most illustrators work at home or in a studio. They usually work at a drawing board and computer workstation.

Companies that may employ illustrators=

  • design or advertising agencies
  • publishers
  • multimedia and web publishers.

1476212_10153575952195151_2142968391_n An illustrator is a job i’ve been interested in pursuing for many years, though looking into it it appears to be more available as freelance work with another main job on the side until you build up a successful reputation and business.



Museum/ Gallery Curator:


  • Range of typical starting salaries at curatorial assistant level: £16,000 – £19,250.
  • Range of typical salaries at senior level for those with substantial experience: £26,000 – 35,000.
  • Salaries can exceed £60,000 depending on the position, level of responsibility and the size of the employing organisation.

2. Duties=

A museum or gallery curator acquires, cares for, develops, displays and interprets a collection of artefacts or works of art in order to inform, educate and inspire the public.In addition to responsibility for a particular collection, the job can include other activities, such as public relations, marketing, fundraising and education programmes. Curators are also expected to prepare budgets, manage staff and build relationships with both internal and external partners and stakeholders.

3.Requirements/ Qualifications=

A good honours degree is generally the minimum academic entry requirement and a pre-entry postgraduate qualification is usually required – either a PhD in your specialism or a Masters/diploma in museum studies.

  • an interest in and knowledge of a relevant subject area;
  • accuracy and attention to detail;
  • communication skills, both written and oral;
  • information technology and web design skills;
  • motivation and creative flair;
  • influencing and negotiation skills;
  • organisation, planning and administrative skills;
  • project management skills;
  • political awareness;
  • research skills;
  • teamwork and building relationships;
  • a flexible approach to work.

4. Working hours=

  • Working hours are mainly Monday to Friday, but extra hours are often necessary in the run up to an exhibition, providing cover for evening meetings or other ‘work-related’ social events for which time off in lieu is usually claimed.
  • Self-employment and contract work are common, not least in the field of archaeology where consultancy work can be a route to international opportunities, depending on the reputation of the individual.
  • Part-time work may be possible.

Companies that employ Curators=

  • The Victoria and Albert Museum
  • Milton Keynes Gallery
  • The Tate Modern
  • The Whitechapel Gallery
  • The National History Museum
  • The Science Museum

A curator is one of the jobs i have always had little interest in, and after looking more into this job description it reinforces that disinterest, i have also recently done work experience in a gallery environment and didnt find it an enjoyable experience.

It is important to look ahead to these future career options and know what the requirements of specific jobs are so that you can work towards them.





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