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Summary Report for:
27-1011.00 - Art Directors

Formulate design concepts and presentation approaches for visual communications media, such as print, broadcasting, and advertising. Direct workers engaged in art work or layout design.

Sample of reported job titles: Art Director; Art Supervisor; Creative Director; Creative Guru; Design Director; Designer; Director of Creative Services, Consumer Products; Group Art Supervisor; Production Manager; Senior Art Director

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Detailed Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Formulate basic layout design or presentation approach and specify material details, such as style and size of type, photographs, graphics, animation, video, and sound. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Manage own accounts and projects, working within budget and scheduling requirements. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Confer with creative, art, copywriting, or production department heads to discuss client requirements and presentation concepts and to coordinate creative activities. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Present final layouts to clients for approval. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Review and approve art materials, copy materials, and proofs of printed copy developed by staff members. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Work with creative directors to develop design solutions. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Create custom illustrations or other graphic elements. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Confer with clients to determine objectives, budget, background information, and presentation approaches, styles, and techniques. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Review illustrative material to determine if it conforms to standards and specifications. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Negotiate with printers and estimators to determine what services will be performed. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Attend photo shoots and printing sessions to ensure that the products needed are obtained. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Research current trends and new technology, such as printing production techniques, computer software, and design trends. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Hire, train, and direct staff members who develop design concepts into art layouts or who prepare layouts for printing. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Mark up, paste, and complete layouts and write typography instructions to prepare materials for typesetting or printing. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Conceptualize and help design interfaces for multimedia games, products, and devices. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Prepare detailed storyboards showing sequence and timing of story development for television production. See more occupations related to this task.

Find occupations related to multiple tasks

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

  • Charcoal pencils — Sketching pencils See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Desktop computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Digital camcorders or video cameras — Digital video cameras See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Digital cameras — Digital still cameras See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Notebook computers — Laptop computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Personal computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Tablet computers See more occupations related to this tool.

Technology used in this occupation:

  • Action games — Adobe Systems Adobe Director See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Computer aided design CAD software — Autodesk 3ds Max Design See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Desktop publishing software — Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign; Quark software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Document management software — Adobe Systems Adobe Acrobat See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Electronic mail software — Microsoft Outlook See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Graphics or photo imaging software — Adobe Systems Adobe Illustrator; Adobe Systems Adobe ImageReady; Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop software; MAXON CINEMA 4D (see all 8 examples) See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Internet browser software — Web broswer software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Mobile operator specific application software — Mag+ software; Mobile application software; Tablet application software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Network conferencing software — Atlassian Confluence See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Presentation software — Apple iWork Keynote; Microsoft PowerPoint See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Project management software — Atlassian JIRA See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Video creation and editing software — Apple Final Cut Studio See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Web page creation and editing software — Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver; Social media software; WordPress * See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Web platform development software — Apache Software Foundation Flex *; Hypertext markup language HTML; JavaScript; WoodWing software (see all 9 examples) See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Word processing software — Microsoft Word See more occupations related to this technology.

* Software developed by a government agency and/or distributed as freeware or shareware.

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Knowledge

  • Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Communications and Media — Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Design — Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Fine Arts — Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Administration and Management — Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Sociology and Anthropology — Knowledge of group behavior and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins. See more occupations related to this knowledge.

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Skills

  • Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Management of Personnel Resources — Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Persuasion — Persuading others to change their minds or behavior. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Instructing — Teaching others how to do something. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Learning Strategies — Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Management of Financial Resources — Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Negotiation — Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Operations Analysis — Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Service Orientation — Actively looking for ways to help people. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Systems Analysis — Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes. See more occupations related to this skill.

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Abilities

  • Fluency of Ideas — The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Originality — The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Visual Color Discrimination — The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Far Vision — The ability to see details at a distance. See more occupations related to this ability.

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Work Activities

  • Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Scheduling Work and Activities — Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others — Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Selling or Influencing Others — Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Developing Objectives and Strategies — Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards — Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Provide Consultation and Advice to Others — Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others — Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Performing Administrative Activities — Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Developing and Building Teams — Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Detailed Work Activities

  • Confer with clients to determine needs. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Design layout of art or product exhibits, displays, or promotional materials. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Draw detailed or technical illustrations. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Determine technical requirements of productions or projects. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Design layouts for print publications. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Develop artistic or design concepts for decoration, exhibition, or commercial purposes. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Present work to clients for approval. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Write informational material. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Coordinate design activities. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Select staff, team members, or performers. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Manage operations of artistic or entertainment departments or organizations. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Collaborate with others to develop or refine designs. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Coordinate artistic activities. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Review art or design materials. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Prepare production storyboards. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Research new technologies. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Train others on work processes. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Negotiate for services. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Work Context

  • Electronic Mail — 100% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 96% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Time Pressure — 89% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 84% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Sitting — 75% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Telephone — 72% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Contact With Others — 51% responded “Constant contact with others.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 50% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 51% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 62% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 75% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 44% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 58% responded “Very important results.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 59% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 66% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 71% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 45% responded “Very high responsibility.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Coordinate or Lead Others — 45% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Letters and Memos — 41% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Duration of Typical Work Week — 52% responded “More than 40 hours.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 34% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Physical Proximity — 42% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Deal With External Customers — 37% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Level of Competition — 33% responded “Highly competitive.” See more occupations related to this work context.

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed
Education Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.
Related Experience A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.
Job Zone Examples Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, database administrators, teachers, chemists, art directors, and cost estimators.
SVP Range (7.0 to < 8.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
74   Bachelor's degree
17   Master's degree
9   Associate's degree

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Credentials

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Interests

Interest code: AE

  • Artistic — Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • Enterprising — Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business. See more occupations related to this interest.

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Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.

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Work Values

  • Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions. See more occupations related to this work value.

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Related Occupations

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2014) $41.16 hourly, $85,610 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 75,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Slower than average (3% to 7%) Slower than average (3% to 7%)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 20,000
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

  • Art Directors external site. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.

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