Fine and Studio Arts

What is a Degree in Fine and Studio Arts?

An education in fine and studio arts will give students the methods and techniques used in working with one of the many studio art forms, including painting, drawing, sculpting, ceramics, photography, and more.  The classes taken in a fine and studio arts program will prepare students to either work as an artist or teach art through classes that focus on the history, method, creativity, and business of artwork.

It is not enough for students to simply be creative, but in a fine and studio arts program they will learn the ins and outs of creating art using different mediums and will prepare them to work as a professional artist.  Students will learn about the creative process, color and art theory, as well as art history.  They will also learn the technical aspects of creating art, such as how to prepare, use, and maintain important equipment used in the craft.  They will also learn how to create a professional portfolio, and how to manage a studio as a part of their training in the business aspect of being a professional artist.

Fine and studio arts programs are offered in both a traditional, classroom learning environment as well as a digital, online college learning environment, though this may not be the case with every specific concentration.  Photography is one that is typically offered online, but painting and drawing usually require students to work in a studio with instructors in order to perfect their craft.

Programs in the fine and studio arts are available at almost every educational level, though some more concentrated courses of study may not be available at every level.  There are fine and studio arts programs at the certificate, associate's degree, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctorate degree levels.  Many people choose to focus on one particular medium to study, such as painting or sculpting, as their education advances so that they can gain expertise in one particular art form.

Career Opportunities for Fine and Studio Arts

Many people who receive an education in fine and studio arts will pursue work as an artist, and many will focus on working with one particular medium.  A majority of artists in 2008 were self-employed, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but their average annual earnings varied a great deal.  In May of 2008 art directors made an average of $88,510 annually while craft artists made only $32,570.  Multi-media artists made an average of $62,380, and fine artists averaged around $48,300.  Though the projected growth for art occupations in coming years is expected to be about the same as the average for all other occupations, because there is a great deal of competition in this industry it can be difficult for some artists to find work.

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