Art is not just painting. This industry covers a wide range of jobs, from designers to art gallery directors, jewelers and florists. Having creativity and a vast imagination is key in a field that favors out-of-the-box thinking. The specific skills and qualifications needed to have a successful career in arts will largely depend on your specialty, but you can highlight your critical thinking, passion and self-motivation. Use the expert tips and resume examples below to create a resume that’s a masterpiece

Top arts resume examples




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How to build your resume for an arts career

Looking to grow in the arts industry? According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for multimedia and digital artists is projected to grow 4% in the upcoming years. In contrast, the employment rate of fine artists will remain more or less the same until 2029.

Use our professional resume examples and tips to customize your resume.

Career Track: Art Education

All artists need a good teacher or mentor to learn their craft. The requirements to work in art education vary by state, but most teachers typically must have a bachelor’s degree and a state-issued certification. Follow along this career track to learn how to create a resume for each step of the ladder.

Art Teacher $58,600 Median Salary

Resume Format

Functional Resume

When you’re starting and don’t have a lot of work experience, it’s important to showcase your skills — the functional format helps you do that. It highlights your qualifications, organizing your skills to be front and center instead of your lack of experience.

Summary statement tip

The summary statement should contain your top hard skills, soft skills and work experience. For example, “Energetic and certified art teacher with 2 years of experience teaching elementary school students. Skilled in painting, drawing and other art forms. Committed to helping students express themselves and reach their potential.”

Skills to feature

  • Lesson planning
  • Patient
  • Good listener
  • Collaborative
  • Sketching
  • Painting
  • Crafts
  • Engaging

Get to the next level

To advance in your career, focus on adding these skills and experiences to your resume:

  • Master’s degree in fine arts or a related field
  • Organize thematic art classes
  • Take part in the organization process of school events and ceremonies
  • Gain experience mentoring new teachers

Art Instructor $57,717 Median Salary

Resume Format

Combination  Resume

The combination format is ideal for applicants with 3-7 years of experience. It pays equal attention to your skills and work history, showing what you’ve learned and done so far in your career. Features skills such as art history knowledge, creativity and supply maintenance.

Summary statement tip

Present yourself using key hard and soft skills along with your work accomplishments. For example, “Charismatic and detail-oriented art instructor with 5 years of experience, who has taught classes with an average of 25 students. Successfully improved students’ drawing and painting skills. Skilled at planning art events and presentations.”

Skills to feature

  • Excellent communication
  • Problem-solving
  • Resourceful
  • Color theory
  • Art history
  • Digital arts
  • Renaissance (or any specific art movement) expertise
  • Stage design

Get to the next level

To reach a higher level and teach in universities, you should:

  • Get a Ph.D in fine arts, art history, theater or the artist field of your choice.
  • Gain experience as a graduate teaching assistant.
  • Volunteer or work in an occupation related to your field of expertise.

Art Professor $72,660 Median Salary

Resume Format

Chronological Resume

The chronological format is perfect for senior-level positions — like art professor — as it represents your work history in a crisp, clutter-free manner. In this format, your work experience and achievements take a more important role than your skills, so make sure you provide detailed information and accomplishments on previous jobs. As an art professor with a lot of credentials, your resume may be two-pages long.

Summary statement tip

Keep the focus on your work experience and top achievements in this section and include one or two top skills in the mix. Use action verbs to present your accomplishments. For example, “Innovative and adaptive art professor with 8 years of experience teaching baroque, surrealism and impressionism. Published author, highly skilled in creating engaging lesson plans.”

Skills to feature

  • Strong critical thinking
  • Art exhibition
  • Leadership
  • Highly creative
  • Strong communication
  • Curriculum development
  • Art techniques
  • Thesis supervisor
  • Doctoral advisor

Get to the next level

For most university professors, the next step in their career is attaining a tenure — a guarantee that you’ll continue working at that university. To obtain this, you must:

  • Complete research on a specific topic and publish it.
  • Contribute to the institution by serving on a faculty committee, organizing conferences or advising student organizations.
  • Have an excellent teaching record for the department to review.

Career Track: Digital Arts

The increasing popularity of social media means that companies need to have a strong digital presence. More are turning to marketing agencies or in-house graphic designers to create visually appealing content, websites and more.

Studio Intern $43,567 Median Salary

Resume Format

Functional Resume

This format highlights your diverse skill sets — both professional and personal — and shows the employer what a well-rounded candidate you are, even if you lack work experience.

Summary statement tip

 In a few sentences, describe your best skills and personal attributes relevant to the job posting. Suppose the employer is looking for someone creative with project coordination skills. In that case, you might start your summary with: “Hardworking and creative Studio Intern with good communication, research, and project coordination skills.”

Skills to feature

  • Creativity
  • Concept development
  • Basic Adobe Creative Cloud knowledge
  • Time management
  • Digital art
  • Detail-oriented
  • Research

Get to the next level

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, digital designers’ job opportunities will grow by about 8% by 2029. Take advantage of this growing job market by:

  • Completing a bachelor’s degree in web design, digital media or graphic arts
  • Possessing knowledge of multiple digital multimedia tools, like Flash, FinalCut Pro and Photoshop
  • Keeping up with the latest digital trends

Graphic Designer $52,110 Median Salary

Resume Format

Combination Resume

This resume format is ideal for candidates with a few years of experience, or if you’re changing job fields and have transferable skills you can include. Use this format to balance your professional skills and work experience perfectly.

Summary statement tip

Use industry-specific action verbs — like accomplished, developed, established, designed or produced — to describe your skills and accomplishments. They provide instant information and are often the first words recruiters see before reading the rest of your skills.

Skills to feature

  • Photoshop
  • Illustrator
  • Visual communication
  • Social media trends
  • Research
  • Brainstorming
  • Team player
  • Attention to detail

Get to the next level

To grow into an art director, we recommend:

  • Developing a portfolio with your best work
  • Choosing an area to become an expert in and getting five or more years of work experience
  • Gaining leadership experience, as art directors must be able to organize, direct and motivate other artists

Art Director$96,878 Median Salary

Resume Format

Chronological Resume

This resume format highlights your extensive work history and accomplishments, so it’s better suited for someone with over ten years of continuous experience.

Summary statement tip

Summarize your top experiences and skills in concise sentences and include any relevant certifications or awards. For example: “Veteran and award-winning Art Director with a solid background in publicity and marketing. Proficient organizer, project leader, and team builder with a deep understanding of successful marketing strategies.”

Skills to feature

  • Visual communication expertise
  • Bachelor’s or master’s degree in graphic design, graphic communications or fine arts
  • Branding
  • Excellent presentation skills
  • Mentoring
  • Superior time management
  • Adobe Creative Cloud expertise
  • Mac OS X proficiency

Get to the next level

For most art directors, the next step in their career is becoming the creative director. To do this, you must:

  • Master skills and tools like graphic design, illustration, photography, copywriting, Adobe Creative Suite and social media.
  • Know how to conceptualize creative projects and guide the team from start to finish.
  • Present in front of clients and be involved in the managerial side of the process.
  • Lead brainstorming sessions.

Recommended arts resume templates


Stand out with this unusual four-quadrant design. Icons highlight your contact information, you can change the color scheme to fit your taste and all of your details are easy to find.


Modern, simple and original, this layout features your name and contact information on a thick header at the top.


Keep it professional and cool with a design that lets the hiring manager connect the dots. Easy to navigate and customizable, this design features clean fonts and different color options.

To see more creative templates you can use, visit our resume templates page.

Arts resume FAQ

What skills should you include in your arts resume?

Hard skills:Soft skills:
Constructive drawingImaginative
Material selectingPresentation
Knowledge of advanced art conceptsOut of the box thinking
Understanding of rules of perspectiveExpert collaborator
Digital designInterpersonal skills
Concept creationCommunication
Art historyLeadership
Corporate identity brandingOrganization
Adobe Creative CloudTeam player
MS PowerPointQuick learner
Curriculum development
Website design

How do you find relevant keywords and add them to your resume?

Find the right keywords for your resume by merely reading the job description, specifically the requirements and responsibilities sections. Pinpoint the qualities the employer is looking for in a candidate and include those that apply to you in your resume. Avoid writing all of them in a single section and instead spread them through the document in your skills list, summary and work experience.

How do you choose the correct format for you?

As we explained in the career tracks, different levels of experience call for different resume formats.

If you’re a fresh graduate or have less than two years of work experience, then the functional format will help you shine by focusing on your skills. Someone with three to seven years of experience should use the combination format because it perfectly balances your work history and professional skills. On the other hand, if you have more than eight or ten years of experience, you should opt for the chronological format because it highlights your career progression and puts most of your resume’s focus on your extensive experience.

Not sure where to start? Our Resume Builder has the tools you need to create a resume for every job level.