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Art and design jobs


Studying art and design could lead you into a wide variety of fulfilling jobs. Here’s our guide to some possible careers for school leavers.

Look around you! Art and design is everywhere and there are plenty of career options to consider for those of you who are studying for a qualification in this field – art therapy, animation, design or photography, to name but a few.

Art therapist 

QTE_ARTArt therapists are people who use art as a way of communicating with people who find it difficult to express their feelings verbally. Art therapists are generally used by the NHS, in the private health sector, the social services and the drug rehabilitation services, as well as in companies where therapy is useful.

To work as an art therapist within the NHS or the social services, you will need a postgraduate qualification. Art therapy training courses are at master’s level and are completed over two years full time or three years part time.


Computer animation is another career option in the world of art. Animation can be in 2D or 3D, as well as in special effects and CGI. Animators can work in film and television as well as in the advertising industry and in the gaming industry.

Some universities offer courses in computer animation. Students on these courses will also need to study computer programming and graphic design. Some art schools may offer animation courses. These tend to focus on the more creative, rather than the technical side of animation.


The best thing about studying art and design is that it can be applied to a huge variety of things, including websites, interiors, cars, fashion, logos, shoes and textiles. The list of possibilities is endless!

Qualifications in art and design or fine art are essential to get into these careers but after that, qualifications tend to get more specialised. For example, a degree in fine art, interior decorating or the performing arts would be useful for a career in set design and logo designers would need a graphic design degree.


You can work as a freelance photographer or be employed by a company as an in-house photographer. Photographers work in a variety of areas – advertising, newspapers and fashion as well as other specialist fields such as nature or medical photography. You can study photography at various levels – a degree, HND or a course run by an independent body. Some photographers are self-taught and become successful without formal qualifications but doing photography as part of an art and design course of will at least give you some basic knowledge and will help you build up a network of contacts. Click here and here for other art and design related articles in Moving On magazine.

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About Lynette Daly

Lynette is the publishing editor of Moving On magazine. Moving On is devoted to helping young people make good choices for their future – education, qualifications and careers. Moving On really wants to motivate you! Our articles cover a range of topics to inspire and give ideas. Our magazines are delivered free to all schools, colleges and sixth forms in England and is also available online.

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