It’s not a new trend for artists to look to other professional niches to combine their artistic skills with entrepreneurial acumen. Creative businesses can take many shapes and forms, allowing artists to choose from a wide variety of niches. Fortunately, the digitization of our world has opened up many opportunities to explore art business ideas.
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In this article, we will look at 10 art business ideas that can help you earn some income. We will focus on small business ideas for artists, as many artists are looking for a part-time activity and do not necessarily have a full-time job. Let’s jump right into it.
#1 Graphic Design
The most common choice for artists who want to try starting an art business is to break into the graphic design industry. Digital art has become popular in our modern life. Although the niche has become quite competitive, it is still a great venture for experienced artists to apply their skills in a new way.
This also allows for easy entry into the tech industry. Such work will include designing logos, templates, sitemaps and much more. Some of the industries where graphic designers work are:
There’s a lot to do in a graphic design career, so you can choose whether it’s your part-time or full-time job.
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#2 Tattoo Art
Tattoo art is definitely one of the best art businesses to start in 2023. Consider this. As of 2022, the tattoo industry is worth an estimated $1.89 billion.
More and more people, young and old, are becoming interested in tattoos and tattoos. Although becoming a tattoo master requires training, a steady hand and practice. A well-rounded artist can master this skill in a matter of months. So, if transferring art to people’s skin and encasing it forever is something that interests you, then switching to tattooing won’t be too difficult.
#3 Print on Demand
Print-on-demand is a business model where a merchant designs custom digital prints that are sold and then transferred onto fabric, usually clothing like t-shirts. Despite what it may seem, print-on-demand is still a very popular niche that allows artists to start successful art businesses. As an artist, your job will be to design custom prints for clients and send them to fulfillment centers. It’s not that hard, is it?
There are many e-commerce platforms that allow you to set up your print services in a matter of hours and start designing right away.
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You can also use services like Amazon Merch on Demand to earn royalties from each design. They offer to print your designs only after the sale, so you don’t have to worry about unsold inventory.
Photography is the only art business idea we feature on this list that doesn’t directly involve painting or some sort of design. However, it is important for an artist to have a sharp eye and create an image. Photography is quite similar in that respect.
There is also more room for professional diversity. Meaning there are all types of photography, from lifestyle shoots to product shoots. Each photography niche has its own requirements, so you even have some room to choose what you want.
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Calligraphy is no longer as trendy or popular as it used to be. However, many brands still use calligraphy services to enrich their visual design and promote their branding. There is still demand for calligraphy, from designing custom calligraphy for events such as weddings to writing handwritten notes for clients.
While there may be many beautiful fonts available online, there is nothing that can compare to skilled penmanship. You can find freelance calligraphy jobs on job search platforms like Uprwork. So, if you have great handwriting, calligraphy is one of the best small business ideas for artists.
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Murals have gone in and out of style over the decades. Now they are making a comeback as many trendy places are turning to muralists to paint their walls with a custom design. The scope of work is very similar to ordinary painting, only on a larger canvas.
Depending on the project, you can have a lot of creative freedom to explore and develop your skills. Marketplaces like Etsy feature hundreds of mural artists where they can display and sell their projects and services. This makes mural painting one of the most familiar art business ideas for artists.
#7 Card design
Like print-on-demand, you can start your own digital business by selling personalized greeting cards. Considering that people tend to buy multiple cards throughout the year for multiple occasions, it’s a fairly easy and hassle-free business idea for artists. Not to mention, it is quite cost effective as your supplies will be cheaper compared to other types of art. You can build your digital custom card design services on SaaS platforms like Shopify.
#8 Art consulting
Art consulting is a great way for artists to start an art business and stay in a niche they love while earning extra income. Art consultants help clients choose the right type of art based on their needs and requirements using their knowledge. Typically, customers purchase pieces of art that they want for their collection. This is a place where you can showcase your expertise and show that you have your hand on the pulse of what is currently trending in the art market.
#9 Art restoration
The last two art business ideas are more difficult to penetrate and will require much more attention than the previous ideas. To become an art restorer, you must undergo special training and acquire the skills necessary for this profession. Some art restoration programs last up to a year.
Antique art restorers have many responsibilities, such as:
- Reupholster antique furniture
- Application of lacquers and varnishes to protect works of art from deterioration
- Disassemble and reassemble artwork
And much more. This job is suitable for artists who are passionate about what they do.
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#10 Art direction
Art direction can take many forms and is one of the most diverse art businesses. Some of the ways to involve art directors in projects are:
- A collection of films
- Costume design
- Branding management
- Photo assistant
There are many more niches that art directors can be involved in. The common theme in all of them is that the principals control and manage the overall design of the project, whatever that may be or look like. This niche certainly has many creative avenues that can satisfy almost any artist.
There are a number of art business ideas that help artists work as self-employed individuals in unique business areas. You don’t have to quit your job to pursue other types of creative work. On the contrary, there are many options for artists who want to completely change their profession.
Today we bring you 10 business ideas for artists to start their own small business. The decision to become an entrepreneur comes from different reasons for each merchant. However, the important thing is to follow your passion and not be afraid of the challenges that may arise. If you have questions about starting an online business, contact us for a free consultation with our team.
The tattoo industry is worth an estimated $1.89 billion by 2022