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Become An Interactive Art Director

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Working As An Interactive Art Director

  • Thinking Creatively
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $78,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Interactive Art Director Do

Art directors are responsible for the visual style and images in magazines, newspapers, product packaging, and movie and television productions. They create the overall design and direct others who develop artwork or layouts.

Duties

Art directors typically do the following: 

  • Determine how best to represent a concept visually
  • Determine which photographs, art, or other design elements to use
  • Develop the overall look or style of a publication, an advertising campaign, or a theater, television, or film set
  • Lead graphic designers, set and exhibit designers, or other design staff
  • Review and approve designs, artwork, photography, and graphics developed by other staff members 
  • Talk to clients to develop an artistic approach and style
  • Coordinate activities with other artistic and creative departments
  • Develop detailed budgets and timelines
  • Present designs to clients for approval

Art directors typically oversee the work of other designers and artists who produce images for television, film, live performances, advertisements, or video games. They determine the overall style in which a message is communicated visually to its audience. For each project, they articulate their vision to artists. The artists then create images, such as illustrations, graphics, photographs, or charts and graphs, or design stage and movie sets, according to the art director’s vision.

Art directors work with art and design staffs in advertising agencies, public relations firms, and book, magazine, or newspaper publishers to create designs and layouts. They also work with producers and directors of theater, television, or movie productions to oversee set designs. Their work requires them to understand the design elements of projects, inspire other creative workers, and keep projects on budget and on time. Sometimes they are responsible for developing budgets and timelines. 

The following are some specifics of what art directors do in different industries:

In publishing, art directors typically oversee the page layout of catalogs, newspapers, or magazines. They also choose the cover art for books and periodicals. Often, this work includes publications for the Internet, so art directors oversee production of the websites used for publication.

In advertising and public relations, art directors ensure that their clients’ desired message and image are conveyed to consumers. Art directors are responsible for the overall visual aspects of an advertising or media campaign and coordinate the work of other artistic or design staff, such as graphic designers.

In movie production, art directors collaborate with directors to determine what sets will be needed for the film and what style or look the sets should have. They hire and supervise a staff of assistant art directors or set designers to complete designs.

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How To Become An Interactive Art Director

Art directors need at least a bachelor’s degree in an art or design subject and previous work experience. Depending on the industry, they may have worked as graphic designers, fine artists, editors, or photographers, or in another art or design occupation before becoming art directors. 

Education

Many art directors start out in another art-related occupation, such as fine artists or photographers. Work experience in art or design occupations develops an art director’s ability to visually communicate to a specific audience creatively and effectively. They gain the appropriate education for that occupation, usually by earning a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.

To supplement their work experience in those occupations and show their ability to take on a more creative or a more managerial role, some complete a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Most art directors work 5 years or more in another occupation before becoming art directors. Depending upon the industry, they may work as graphic designers, fine artists, editors, photographers, or in another art or design occupation before becoming art directors.

For many artists, including art directors, developing a portfolio—a collection of an artist’s work that demonstrates his or her styles and abilities—is essential. Managers, clients, and others look at artists’ portfolios when they are deciding whether to hire an employee or contract for an art project.

Important Qualities 

Communication skills. Art directors must be able to listen to and speak with staff and clients to ensure that they understand employees’ ideas and clients’ desires for advertisements, publications, or movie sets.

Creativity. Art directors must be able to come up with interesting and innovative ideas to develop advertising campaigns, set designs, or layout options.

Leadership skills. Art directors must be able to organize, direct, and motivate other artists. They need to articulate their visions to artists and oversee the work as it progresses.

Resourcefulness. Art directors must be able to adapt their latest designs to the changing technology used in their industry.

Time-management skills. Balancing competing priorities and multiple projects while meeting strict deadlines is critical for art directors.

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Average Length of Employment
Art Director 4.2 years
Creative Director 3.9 years
Top Careers Before Interactive Art Director
Art Director 22.3%
Designer 4.6%
Internship 2.9%
Top Careers After Interactive Art Director
Art Director 14.3%
Consultant 2.5%

Do you work as an Interactive Art Director?

Interactive Art Director Demographics

Gender

Male

66.3%

Female

22.4%

Unknown

11.2%
Ethnicity

White

59.2%

Hispanic or Latino

17.5%

Asian

10.6%

Black or African American

9.4%

Unknown

3.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

57.1%

German

14.3%

Polish

14.3%

French

14.3%
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Interactive Art Director Education

Schools

School of Visual Arts

9.2%

New York University

8.0%

Miami Ad School

8.0%

Savannah College of Art and Design

6.9%

Academy of Art University

6.9%

Virginia Commonwealth University

5.7%

Wayne State University

5.7%

Syracuse University

4.6%

Parsons the New School for Design

4.6%

Art Center College of Design

4.6%

Columbus College of Art and Design

4.6%

Columbia College Chicago

3.4%

Temple University

3.4%

Art Institute of California - Inland

3.4%

Art Institute of Philadelphia

3.4%

University of Massachusetts - Lowell

3.4%

University of Massachusetts Amherst

3.4%

Pratt Institute-Main

3.4%

University of the Arts

3.4%

San Francisco State University

3.4%
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Majors

Graphic Design

40.3%

Fine Arts

12.2%

Design And Visual Communication

11.2%

Computer Applications

5.0%

Advertising

5.0%

Theatre

3.2%

Animation

2.5%

Computer Science

2.5%

Graphic Communications

2.2%

Photography

2.2%

Computer Information Systems

2.2%

Entertainment Business

1.4%

Marketing

1.4%

Digital Media

1.4%

English

1.4%

Business

1.4%

Audiovisual Communications Technologies

1.1%

Area Studies

1.1%

Journalism

1.1%

Communication

1.1%
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Degrees

Bachelors

59.5%

Other

19.7%

Masters

10.7%

Associate

5.2%

Certificate

4.5%

Diploma

0.3%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$78,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$46,000
Min 10%
$78,000
Median 50%
$78,000
Median 50%
$78,000
Median 50%
$78,000
Median 50%
$78,000
Median 50%
$78,000
Median 50%
$78,000
Median 50%
$133,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Wieden+Kennedy
Highest Paying City
Portland, OR
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
2.5 years
How much does an Interactive Art Director make at top companies?
The national average salary for an Interactive Art Director in the United States is $78,679 per year or $38 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $46,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $134,000.

Real Interactive Art Director Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Interactive Art Director Precision Global Consulting Inc. New York, NY Nov 03, 2011 $161,743
Interactive Art Director Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Mar 22, 2016 $138,000 -
$187,200
Interactive Art Director ELC Management LLC New York, NY Sep 19, 2015 $135,850
Interactive Art Director Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Apr 20, 2015 $128,000 -
$148,000
Interactive Art Director Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Feb 25, 2014 $125,000 -
$145,000
Interactive Art Director ELC Management LLC New York, NY Sep 19, 2012 $125,000
Interactive Art Director Anomaly Partners, LLC New York, NY Apr 09, 2012 $110,000
Interactive Art Director Precision Global Consulting, Inc. New York, NY May 07, 2013 $95,000
Interactive Art Director Solution Set San Francisco, CA Feb 06, 2012 $95,000
Interactive Art Director, Digital Department BLT Communications LLC Los Angeles, CA Apr 16, 2012 $80,000
Interactive Art Director Leibowitz Communication Inc. New York, NY Aug 01, 2015 $76,000
Interactive Art Director NW Entertainment Inc. Burbank, CA Apr 27, 2015 $75,000
Interactive Art Director Sanborn Media Factory Inc. New York, NY Sep 16, 2013 $75,000
Interactive Art Director Leibowitz Communications Inc. New York, NY Mar 20, 2015 $74,109
Interactive Art Director Yahoo! Inc. Sunnyvale, CA Oct 09, 2016 $73,362 -
$91,500
Interactive Art Director Barker/DZP, Inc. New York, NY Jul 05, 2010 $68,662
Interactive Art Director Wieden + Kennedy, Inc. Portland, OR Sep 21, 2015 $67,000
Interactive Art Director/Developer Pacific Digital Group, Inc. San Diego, CA Mar 09, 2016 $60,000
Interactive Art Director Barker/DZP, Inc. New York, NY Sep 19, 2012 $60,000
Interactive Art Director Studiobanks, LLC Charlotte, NC Aug 15, 2010 $60,000
Interactive Art Director Publicis Plano, TX Dec 01, 2010 $58,000
Interactive Art Director Publicis Plano, TX Sep 13, 2010 $58,000

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Top Skills for An Interactive Art Director

  1. Company Website
  2. Online
  3. User Interface
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Refocused online brand image by changing user interface architecture, upgrading website for easier navigation/use.
  • Designed and created unique graphical user interfaces.
  • Provided art direction and produced designs for domestic/international partnerships and affiliate licensing software engine.
  • Created and executed biweekly email marketing blasts and e-newsletters.
  • Developed visual identity for brand consistency and creative concepts for intranet based applications.

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Top 10 Best States for Interactive Art Directors

  1. California
  2. New York
  3. Washington
  4. New Mexico
  5. Georgia
  6. Oregon
  7. Utah
  8. New Jersey
  9. Maine
  10. Illinois
  • (482 jobs)
  • (270 jobs)
  • (60 jobs)
  • (5 jobs)
  • (65 jobs)
  • (29 jobs)
  • (13 jobs)
  • (35 jobs)
  • (3 jobs)
  • (109 jobs)

Top Interactive Art Director Employers

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