Creative Side Hustles for Artists

Creative people understand it can be challenging to make a living as a full-time artist. According to a survey by The Creative Independent, nearly 60 percent of responding artists said they earn less than $30,000 per year. If you don’t have another income source, your art earnings may not be enough to make ends meet.

However, you may not want to give up your creative pursuits, especially if you’re trying to establish a name for yourself. Fortunately, creative people can earn money through a side job that allows them to use their skills while generating an income stream.

The Mob is a network of city hubs that support and promote artists in cities both in the US and abroad, dabbling in arts, comedy, and culture. They can be your marketing team, giving you the tools necessary to increase your online visibility. Learn how to join them here.

Sell Handmade Items Online

Selling crafts or art online can be a natural fit for artists. You may be selling your art online already, but have you considered branching out from your niche? There may be a high-demand product you can make. Spend time researching what products are currently strong sellers, and make sure you can turn a profit after calculating materials and labor expenses. If you’re new to e-commerce, an online class is a good investment.

Some artists may hesitate to spend resources on a creative pursuit outside of their usual style. If you have similar feelings, consider that you’re still using your artistic skills, and your side product is a means to make money while providing you time to continue your primary work.

Sell Photography

If you have an artistic eye, photography can be a natural fit, even if you don’t have experience. Photographers require the ability to visualize the subject engagingly.

If you want to pursue photography, though, you also need the right equipment. Start with a high-quality camera and lens, and don’t be afraid to purchase used gear. You also need photo-editing software.

Consider what kind of photography you want to do. If you prefer to work with clients, you can photograph studio portraits, weddings, babies, children, or sports. Research the going rates in your area and set your prices accordingly.

You can also consider selling your work to a stock photography company. Customers purchase your work through a website, and you receive a percentage through the company. If you have non-exclusive arrangements with the companies you work with, you can use the same photo across different sites.

Building a Business

If your side hustle becomes successful, you may find it feasible to turn it into a business. As you develop your enterprise, there are some points to consider.

  • Most new businesses take two to three years to become established, so perseverance is key. Gradual growth can be smart and profitable.
  • It’s important to get an EIN (Employee Identification Number) or Tax ID Number. It’s like a Social Security number for your business. Without it, you are forced to merge your business and personal finances, which opens you up to increased liability and puts your personal finances at risk. Also, using an EIN means not having to give your social security number out, which reduces your chances of identity theft.
  • Plan to spend extra hours building your business, especially in the beginning. Establishing your company can be rigorous.

With dedication, you can find a way to create an income stream that still allows you time to pursue your artwork. If you need inspiration, look online for stories and podcasts that can encourage you as you work toward your artistic dreams.

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