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Career profile Craft Artist

Also known as Artist, Ceramic Artist, Designer, Fiber Artist, Fine Craft Artist, Furniture Maker, Glass Artist, Glass Blower, Goldsmith, Hand-Weaver

Craft Artist

Also known as Artist, Ceramic Artist, Designer

Interests Profile
  • Artistic
  • Realistic
  • Enterprising
Pay Range
$21,630 - $59,620 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Speaking
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
Knowledge Areas
  • Fine Arts
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
Core tasks
  • Create functional or decorative objects by hand, using a variety of methods and materials.
  • Cut, shape, fit, join, mold, or otherwise process materials, using hand tools, power tools, or machinery.
  • Apply finishes to objects being crafted.
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What does a Craft Artist do?

Craft Artists create or reproduce handmade objects for sale and exhibition using a variety of techniques, such as welding, weaving, pottery, and needlecraft.

What kind of tasks does a Craft Artist perform regularly?

Craft Artists are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Create functional or decorative objects by hand, using a variety of methods and materials.
  • Cut, shape, fit, join, mold, or otherwise process materials, using hand tools, power tools, or machinery.
  • Apply finishes to objects being crafted.
  • Develop concepts or creative ideas for craft objects.
  • Select materials for use based on strength, color, texture, balance, weight, size, malleability and other characteristics.
  • Advertise products and work, using media such as internet advertising and brochures.
  • Set specifications for materials, dimensions, and finishes.
  • Plan and attend craft shows to market products.
  • Create prototypes or models of objects to be crafted.
  • Confer with customers to assess customer needs or obtain feedback.
  • Fabricate patterns or templates to guide craft production.
  • Develop product packaging, display, and pricing strategies.
  • Sketch or draw objects to be crafted.
  • Research craft trends, venues, and customer buying patterns to inspire designs and marketing strategies.

The above responsibilities are specific to Craft Artists. More generally, Craft Artists are involved in several broader types of activities:

Thinking Creatively
Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Performing General Physical Activities
Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling materials.
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
Selling or Influencing Others
Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

What is a Craft Artist salary?

The median salary for a Craft Artist is $35,180, and the average salary is $38,260. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Craft Artist salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Craft Artists earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Craft Artists earn less than $21,630 per year, 25% earn less than $27,400, 75% earn less than $45,390, and 90% earn less than $59,620.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Craft Artists is expected to change by 13.5%, and there should be roughly 1,200 open positions for Craft Artists every year.

Median annual salary
$35,180
Typical salary range
$21,630 - $59,620
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
13.5%

What personality traits are common among Craft Artists?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Craft Artist are usually higher in their Artistic, Realistic, and Enterprising interests.

Craft Artists typically have very strong Artistic interests. Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.

Also, Craft Artists typically have strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Lastly, Craft Artists typically have strong Enterprising interests. Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Craft Artist tend to value Achievement, Independence, and Working Conditions.

Most importantly, Craft Artists very strongly value Achievement. Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

Second, Craft Artists strongly value Independence. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions.

Lastly, Craft Artists moderately value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Craft Artists must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, independence, and achievement/effort.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Craft Artists, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Independence
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Achievement/Effort
Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Innovation
Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.

What education and training do Craft Artists need?

Craft Artists often have training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Craft Artists usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Craft Artists

  • 2.7% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 11.6% completed high school or secondary school
  • 18.9% completed some college coursework
  • 8.2% earned a Associate's degree
  • 43.6% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 13.4% earned a Master's degree
  • 1.6% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Craft Artists

Craft Artists may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as fine arts, sales and marketing, or customer and personal service knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Craft Artists might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Fine Arts
Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.
Sales and Marketing
Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Customer and Personal Service
Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Design
Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

Important Abilities needed by Craft Artists

Craft Artists must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Craft Artists need abilities such as finger dexterity, originality, and arm-hand steadiness in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Craft Artists, ranked by their relative importance.

Finger Dexterity
The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
Originality
The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
Arm-Hand Steadiness
The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Fluency of Ideas
The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

Critical Skills needed by Craft Artists

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Craft Artists frequently use skills like speaking, reading comprehension, and active listening to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Craft Artists, ranked by their relative importance.

Speaking
Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Reading Comprehension
Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Social Perceptiveness
Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Monitoring
Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

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