Ditch The Art School: How to be an artist Without a Degree

There’s no such thing that art school is required to creating visuals. The good news is that you can have an artistic jobs without owning an art degree. The only skills required are your current art knowledge and a patience.

How to get land into your dream art job without going to art school?

1. Build Your Art Portfolio using Social Media

Building an art portfolio is much easier than going thru a formal education that takes you up to 4 years. Art Portfolio can make your future employer confident that you are the RIGHT ONE by bragging down the beauty of your art to them.

Social Media can be a double edged sword. It may cause a comparison trap among artists or it may helps an artist to grow their platform. Using Art social networking like DeviantArt or Pixiv is a good way to showcase your portfolio to your aspiring employer.

By uploading your beautiful artwork in these kind of platforms, it will be publicly visible for you in order to gain a fanbase. Remember that uploading your portfolio to art social networkings will not work by itself. You might need to promote it in various platforms such as Facebook, Reddit, X, and Instagram.

How fanbase can helps you to land you to your dream art job?

Fanbase is just a people who follow your online platform. Human resources are not a blind rolluete that will randomly pick applicants randomly. Recruits are very careful in selecting an employee for their company.

Even an artist that has an art degree is not safe from rejection. Recruitment team loves to perform a background check. If they do a background check, your fanbase will be a good hint from them.

Recruiters will think that “Oh, this candidate has a thousand followers in Pixiv and a million likes. This might be a low risk for our company because these followers assured that this applicant is producing a high quality artworks in his/her portfolio page.”

This is what the recruiters think for an artist that undergo a formal education but lacks online presence. “This candidate has a Bachelor of Visual Art but upon checking his/her background, this applicant lacks an online presence or fanbase. How I can know if this applicant has a standard for our company? How will the company mitigate the risk of hiring an applicant that has no portfolio that proves us that he/she can perform better here?”

That’s my point in this section, having a good fanbase will gives an insight to the company that hiring you has a lower risk than an artist that has an art degree but no one knows his/her secret talent. Recruiters will have such an unexplainable doubt if an artist doesn’t possesses an amazing art portfolio.

If you don’t have a time for social media, there is also more ways to build your art portfolio! Have a time to read this hyperlinked article.

2. Utilize Free Online Resource

While getting a formal education is a way to increase your art skills in the eyes of the norms, you can improve your current skills using your most powerful bestfriend, the internet!

There are so many free learning resources from the internet to improve your talent in no time. The most helpful tool to improve your talent is YouTube. This website has a vast amount of free online courses served to your table.

If you are an aspiring anime and manga artist. Check out Shidzilla’s free anime drawing course from YouTube!

3. Freelancing

Now, you acquired an enough skills from the Internet and built your art portfolio for your career preparation. Most of full-time jobs are required you to have an art degree. No need to fear about that! 

That’s why freelancing exists! You can find a client in some Facebook groups that looking for a project-based jobs and work without going to 9 to 5 generic time slot.

If you are not a big fan of doing Facebook marketing, you can consider to use freelancing platforms like Fiverr. In this platform, you can create a gig and market it online. 

Reminder: Art business is more on marketing than work. Whether you owned an art degree or not, marketing skills are a must!

Is Art School Necessary to get an art jobs?

The short answer is no, you can have an art career even you don’t have a degree that is only a piece of paper. Even you don’t have a diploma, you can have an artistic job such as graphic designer, art directors, digital artist, acrylic artist and etc.While art school can improve your skills from a formal education and gives you a degree that can certify your skill, employers doesn’t solely look on what formal education you finished. Most of jobs listing in online platforms like LinkedIn doesn’t require a degree to smash down the apply button.


So you have a passion for creating art, but the cost or commitment of art school is holding you back? Don’t worry, the path to becoming a successful artist is open to everyone, regardless of a formal degree. This blog post has shown you that with dedication, online resources, and a strategic online presence, you can build a thriving art career.Remember, your talent and portfolio speak volumes louder than a piece of paper. Start building your portfolio today, leverage the power of the internet to hone your skills, and explore freelancing platforms to turn your passion into projects. The art world awaits your unique voice, so unleash your creativity and chase your artistic dreams!