An experiment in seeing how useful Arts Jobs actually is.. and what is actually being advertised out there.


Paid – 17

Unpaid – 36

Technical (stage/lighting/carpentry etc)

Paid – 38

Unpaid – 42


Paid – 8

Unpaid – 21


Paid – 8

Unpaid – 20


Paid – 61

Unpaid – 72


Paid – 205

Unpaid – 116


Paid – 36

Unpaid – 87

Overall for practitioners (admin section not counted)

Paid – 168

Unpaid – 278

Obviously a count riddled with flaws, and a product of random Emily categories, but hopefully an interesting load of numbers nonetheless. Internships were included in admin and pretty much constitute all unpaid numbers.

Lots of performance and art related jobs that were paid tended to be workshop leading rather then work for artists.

Design has so many unpaid opps as artists seem to advertise for help with their websites and photography in a barter style exchange on here.

Generally though it seems that artists, musicians and writers are the worst off with less than a third of the jobs featured on the Arts Council list being paid. Also, music and writing have the fewest opportunities, which is hopefully just because people advertise elsewhere?

This list also doesn't tell you which opportunities will actually cost money. Ah a sorry-looking list indeed, but then again, I'm sure most of us are aware how random Art Jobs can be!

Tomorrow – a summary of the Storey Gallery/Fly Eric seminar on Saturday. No figures in that one I promise.



How could I forget? On Wednesday night I went over to Victoria Baths in Manchester to try a spot in Amy Sharrock's piece, Drift, there. This involved spending 20 minutes in a boat with the artist drifting around the pool in a daydream for two. The building is incredible anyway, so it was a win-win situation already. Anyone who knows me will know I love to swim, and I did have trouble staying in the boat and not plunging into the pale blue icy pool. So great to see the pool full of water and I was only disappointed that I had missed the underwater opera earlier in the week!

Anyway, how is this related to getting paid? Well, the discussion we had in the boat centred around making time to drift and how we are all so focused, driven and target oriented these days we can easily forget to do so. Amy was advocating a step away from living in technology and getting back into water, outdoors etc. I immediately said I was guilty of being a tecchie and she told me off for using the word guilty.

It made me think about what I spend my time doing and how much guilt can be attached to that. I can't stop tecching and I love the connections and information that comes from being internet-immersed. I do think, however, that I could be more efficient.. i.e. work for five days and then spend a weekend in north Wales with my husband and going swimming rather than mooching around the flat half-heartedly trying to do bits of work between cleaning.

While having my cup of tea in the cafe afterwards I got out my diary and wrote at least one OFF in each week for the next month or two. I shall work up to two OFFs in the near future..




1 Comment

It's been a very hard week, workshops every day at the Tate and I have a very sore throat and closing eyelids. However, tomorrow is a day for getting all my cataloguing hours done before the end of the month (as usual!!). Also, I should say, a very well paid and satisfying week – the kind that doesn't come around too often..

Hoorah, no workshop Saturday so I will go to the symposium, with a travel bursary too, which is great as I hardly got paid anything in this months pay cheques.


Really looking forward to hearing how other artists make a living from their skills.

Other good news; an email from David Parish telling me I can have more free business advice seen as I have become a member of the Royal Standard – yes please!

Lastly, I am working on publicity and organisation in general for Dumb Objects, a show I am putting together at Wolstenholme Projects – facebook people look here: http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/event.php?eid=84…

Last thing I'm organising for ages – honest!!

Now, a peppermint tea, bath and bed with a totally non-art-related-escapist book. Ah, who am I kidding, I just picked up invisible cities and that is so very emily-art-related. Two out of three=good.


Just been reading this article on a-n:

Excellent stuff and when it came to the checklist of possible costs to your practice from doing more than you are being paid for – I checked every one. Oh crap. This includes doing things such as using materials from your studio, using your own camera to document etc.. Some way to go on getting paid properly then.

I particularly liked the section on 'How to eat an elephant' – one bite at a time of course. Bit like my favourite joke from when I was a kid that my mum used to tell all the time: How many elephants can you fit in a mini? two in the front and two in the back. Why did this make me so hysterical? Hmm, not sure now..

Anyway, this money thing is particularly pertinent as I am doing a series of sculpture workshops for Find Your Talent/Tate next week and have already found myself doing more more more than I should. Pah. At least I have the support of another artist on these though so the pressure is less than normal, sort of.

Oh, and I went to Yorkshire Sculpture Park for a meeting this week, way before the contract has started (Sep 1st).. plus there is another meeting/artists' talk/workshop in two weeks.. I guess these have to be counted as two, or one and a half days out of the 20 planning included in the payment.

She is learning…slowly.


Oh how I wish I could go to this, a tour of the new Storey Gallery also appeals (and because it is chock full of lovely and interesting staff):


"Artists have commercially valuable skills which are often not recognised, either by themselves or others.This symposium will explore some examples of artists who are doing that, and some routes for development. Speakers include artist and cultural icon Linder Sterling, artist and architect team Sans façon, and artist Olivia Plender. Each speaker will talk about their experience of working within the commercial creative industries and making the most of these opportunities."

This seems sensible; to acknowledge the fact that artists do not often make a living from selling work and look at how it can be done in real life…