Artistic Skills For Your Resume (With Examples)

By Chris Kolmar - Mar. 2, 2021

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Artistic skills include abilities that enable you to operate in the fine-arts world. Fine art usually refers to works of art that are developed for aesthetics purposes. But the larger field of art and design may require abilities that enable you to create decorative or applied-art works.

Applied art refers to the decoration and design of practical items so that they can be beautiful to look at. Decorative arts, on the other hand, are artworks that are both aesthetically pleasing and functional. These two branches of art sometimes overlap.

If you would like to pursue an art education like a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, then you need to know what’s required of you. And it helps to be aware of the artistic skills you need to have.

Artistic Skills Every Creative Needs to Have

As an undergraduate in a fine arts university, you are likely to obtain interdisciplinary visual arts and design education at some point. That will enable you to undertake a variety of art courses before you decide on what to specialize in later.

These courses will help you develop the artistic skills that you need to create professional works of art.

But if you want to concentrate on the performing-arts, which consist of creative activities that are performed for audiences, you will need a different skill set altogether to get your arts degree.

The artistic skills below will help you fulfill the art requirements based on your preferred disciplines in the field of art:

  1. Drawing skills. Drawing is a visual art form that involves the marking of surfaces using two-dimensional surfaces to create images. Some of the instruments that you can use to draw include:

    • Pencil

    • Charcoal

    • Pen

    • Chalk

    • Crayons

    Drawing can be done on a wide variety of surfaces like:

    • Paper

    • Walls

    • Wood

    • Canvas

    • Leather

    • Blackboard

    • Whiteboard

    And in this era of technological advances, drawing now includes the use of a computer or tablet to create digital images on a screen. You need graphics software to create these drawings. Instruments used in digital drawings include:

    • Mouse

    • Stylus

    • Finger on a touchpad or touchscreen device

    Freehand drawings that are incomplete and done quickly are known as sketches. They act as a record for referencing purposes for the visual artist. They can demonstrate ideas visually or be used as outlines for more refined artworks later on.

    Stick figures are some of the simplest forms of drawing there are. You can use them at the beginning of your artistic journey.

    These figures consist of very few dots, lines, and curves to represent an animal, plant, or human being. The head could simply be a circle and the hands and feet could be straight lines.

    You need to include your drawing skills in your resume if you want to snag a job in the fine arts sector. You can do this by showing your academic credentials from a school of art and design and submitting samples of your drawings.

    Also, remember to include a list of the graphics software you are familiar with like CorelDRAW.

  2. Painting skills. Painting is the process of applying color, paint, or other mediums onto flat surfaces. The common method of applying these mediums is by the use of a paintbrush. But knives, trowels, and sponges can be used too. An airbrush can also be used to spray the medium onto the selected surface.

    Some of the surfaces that you can use to paint on include:

    • Walls

    • Paper

    • Pottery

    • Canvas

    • Concrete

    • Metal

    Painting has a very long history. Some of the world’s oldest cave paintings are over 35,400 years old.

    Throughout history, there have been different artistic movements that have influenced the creation of famous paintings around the world. Examples include:

    Deciding what art movement to follow while you are painting can help you establish authority in your chosen niche market.

    Contemporary-art is always a good place to start. If you have such works of art, you can include them in your portfolio when applying for a job. Having samples to show off may make you stand out more than your fine arts degree.

  3. Sculpting skills. A sculpture usually refers to a three-dimensional work of art. Some are created purely for aesthetic reasons while others have functional value as well. Sculptures can be made through the following methods:

    • Carving

    • Modeling

    • Assembling

    • Casting

    You can create a sculpture using a variety of materials. These include ceramics, wood, and metal. You can also use plastic and stone.

    The creation of ceramics tends to fall under sculpting. Many archeological artifacts are ceramic. Clay is usually one of the most common materials used for ceramic art.

    The creation of installation art is also a form of sculpting. This kind of art is usually assembled for a specific site for a specified period. Art installations are common in museums and art galleries. They can be put in both exterior and interior spaces.

    If you can create three-dimensional objects like art installations and pottery, be sure to state that you possess sculpting skills.

    Also, if you are familiar with 3D technologies such as 3D printing you should highlight your expertise. Your expertise in creating studio glass is also likely to fall under sculpting skills.

  4. Printmaking skills. Printmaking refers to the artistic process of transferring an image or pattern from a matrix to a secondary surface. These surfaces include:

    • Fabric

    • Paper

    • Parchment

    • Plastic

    • Metal

    • Ceramics

    • Wood

    Stencil printing is a common form of printmaking. It is used for labeling and in the creation of graffiti art. However, it is a woodcut, a relief printing technique, which is considered one of the earliest printmaking forms.

    If you are skilled at etching, lithography, screen-printing, etc., you need to highlight those printmaking skills in your resume. For example, you could highlight how you helped your previous employers create and print t-shirt designs for their customers.

    Also, if you have created street art using any printmaking techniques, you would do well to include those in your portfolio.

  5. Music composition skills. Musical composition falls under the performing arts category. It is the process of creating a work of music that is either vocal or instrumental.

    One can use images, words, or even computer programs to compose music. But a key component of musical composition is the ability to evoke emotions and make the sounds pleasing to the ear.

    If you have music composition skills, you could work in various industries. You could do the following:

    • Venture into the world of academics and become a professor that teaches music composition

    • Become a musical director that oversees music production for opera productions or musical theaters

    • Compose music for movies or video games

    • Work for a music recording company

    • Work for radio or television networks

  6. Dancing skills. Dancing also falls under the performing arts category. It involves the movement of the human body in a rhythmic manner. It is usually done while accompanying some form of music.

    Not only does dancing have an aesthetic value, but it also has a symbolic value. And it is present in some form in all human cultures.

    Different types of dances exist. Some of them include:

    • Ballet dance

    • Ballroom dance

    • Contemporary dance

    • Tap dance

    You should specify the kind of dances you are familiar with or trained in, within your resume. Depending on your expertise, you could get a job as a:

    • Dance school instructor

    • Dance choreographer for music celebrities or in a musical theater

    • Dance judge in dancing shows

    • Dance photographer

    • Dance medicine specialist

  7. Acting skills. Acting is the enactment of a story by adopting a character. Acting can be done in multiple mediums that include radio, film, television, and theater. Sometimes it’s combined with dance or music. It is also a form of performing arts.

    Having a Bachelor in Performing Arts is a good thing. But that alone would not convince a hiring manager looking at your resume to hire you.

    You also need to include the roles that you played in the past and which mediums you played them in. You may also have to submit a video sample of yourself as you assume a character that has been advertised in the job description.

  8. Writing skills. Writing is the ability to communicate using symbols and text. Within the artistic world, writing can be used to evoke emotions, pass information, entertain, and for aesthetic purposes.

    As a creative, your writing skills will come in handy. You will need them to create different forms of artwork. Your writing skills will be helpful in:

    • Poetry creation. Poetry is a work of literature that is rhythmic and meant to stimulate the intellect while evoking deeper meanings and emotions. Because poetry is meant to be performed for an audience, it falls under the category of performance arts.

      Many of William Shakespeare’s works are poetical works. And they have been performed as films, theatrical works, etc. Your ability to write poetry can get you jobs within the associated industries.

    • Scriptwriting. Scriptwriting is the art of writing stories that are meant to be expressed on mass media such as radio, TV, theater, video games, and films. You must write down each character’s words and actions. You will also need to write down how each scene is supposed to be set.

      Scripts can be based on original stories. But they can also be adapted from poetry, comic books, novels, and short stories.

      Having this specialized skill set can enable you to work in:

      • The movie industry

      • Acting theaters

      • The television industry

      • The radio industry

      • Acting schools as a drama teacher or screenwriting professor

    • Calligraphy. Calligraphy is a visual art form that uses decorative writing to create words that are not only beautiful to look at, but also emotionally evocative.

      These works can be done with brushes, pens, quills, as well as other writing instruments. You can do them on a variety of surfaces that include paper, walls, wood, and fabric.

      The ability to create beautiful writing is an excellent skill set to have. You can be employed as a:

      • Graphic designer

      • Painter

      • Book illustrators

      • Calligraphy instructor

      • Calligraphy designer for corporate packaging businesses

  9. Filmmaking skills. Filmmaking refers to the process of making a moving picture. It falls under the visual arts category. It involves:

    • Coming up with the idea

    • Writing the story

    • Casting the characters who will play each role

    • Shooting the film

    • Editing

    • Screening the film

    The entire filmmaking team should have a common artistic vision. Otherwise, it would be difficult to make the story successfully come to life.

    Animation also falls under the filmmaking category. But it involves the manipulation of drawn images so that they can appear as if they are moving.

    To get jobs in the film industry you should include all the associated skills and technologies you are familiar with in your resume. These may include:

    • Fashion design

    • Animation

    • Storyboard writing

    • Musical composition

    • Acting

    The movie and TV industry in the U.S. is worth $33.8 billion. Your artistic skills can help you get a foot in the door even if you are not an actor or actress.

Final Thoughts

As a creative, you need some artistic skills to get employed in your preferred line of work. So, work on those skills that you need the most and highlight them in your resume. Also, include portfolio samples.

And don’t forget to define yourself as an artist that is adaptable, creative, and good at forming relationships and leading others. Every little skill helps.

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Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar is a co-founder of Zippia and the editor-in-chief of the Zippia career advice blog. He has hired over 50 people in his career, been hired five times, and wants to help you land your next job. His research has been featured on the New York Times, Thrillist, VOX, The Atlantic, and a host of local news. More recently, he's been quoted on USA Today, BusinessInsider, and CNBC.

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