For my Careers in Art project, I researched the jobs of a curator, production designer, and industrial designers.
The nature of a curator’s job is handle objects with cultural, biological, or historical significance. This includes sculptures, textiles, and paintings. The job of a curator must not be confused with that of an archivist – one who deals with important and potentially valuable records and documents. I knew vaguely that curators and museum directors administer museums and historic sites but I was surprised to discover that it actually involves a wide range of work areas, including zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens, and nature centers. As a result, most curators specialize in a particular field like botany, art, paleontology, or history. There is a lot more business involved in being a curator than I originally assumed. Curators direct the acquisition, storage, and exhibition of collections, by negotiating and authorizing the purchase, sale, exchange or loan of collections. One of the most important developments in today’s job of a curator is fundraising and promotion, which includes writing and reviewing grand proposals, journal articles and publicity materials. Curators need a bachelor’s degree in art history and a master’s degree in museum studies or an appropriate discipline of the museum’s specialty, whether it be art, history, or archaeology. Some museums, such as natural history and science museums, require a doctoral degree. The median salary earned by a curator is $43,920 per year.
I knew that production designers have an important role in film, television, or theater production but I had no idea their duties were so demanding and extensive. Responsible for the visual concept and the “overall look” of the set, they work closely with the director and producer to design the style for sets, locations, graphics, props, lighting, camera angles, and costumes. They come up with a concept by reading the scripts to identify factors indicating a particular visual style. Working with the design budget, production designers provide scale draws or models for potential studio or theater sets, produce design ideas for costumes and other accessories and props, and researching for possible resources, materials, and locations. They are in charge of an art department, consisting of a design and production team, dedicated to completing production sets. Although there are no set educational requirements for this job, many of the most successful production designers have degrees in architecture or environmental design. They must have an excellent understanding of the film television, and commercial production process, knowledge of different roles within an art department and how it operates, good time management skills, artistic and drawing skills, communication skills, ability to manage people, research skills, and budgeting and financial skills. The median expected salary for a production designer is $43,892.
Industrial designers fuse art, business, and engineering to design everyday products. When they design products, industrial designers look for style, function, quality, and safety of every manufactured goods. Before, I was not certain about the design process for professional. Now, I know that designers prepare conceptual sketches or diagrams, usually hand drawn or done on the computer. Then they create more detailed renderings. I did not realize that so many computer work goes into industrial design. A lot of research is conducted not only before designing products, but also while the process is going on. Production designers constantly have to discuss and consult with a creative director or other members of the productive development team in the initial stages. Then they present the designs and prototypes to their client or managers for any improvements or changes needed to be made. Industrial designers work closely with engineers, accountants and cost estimators to ensure the product’s safeness, easier assemblage, or cheaper manufacturing. Today, most designers work in large corporations or design firms. For most entry-level commercial and industrial design jobs, a bachelor’s degree in industrial design, architecture, or engineering is required. Master’s degree is optional but many of today’s designers are pursuing and obtaining them. Many choose to earn a bachelor’s or master’s degree in a different area that pertains to the skills necessary for industrial design, such as business administration, marketing, or information technology. The median salary earnings for industrial designers are $54,560.