Creative ways to earn money while you create your art

By: Alyssa Strickland

Creators gotta create

and that’s why when an artist needs to supplement their artistic pursuits, they should look for a side job that allows them to still be creative.

No matter where your creative heart lies, there’s a related side hustle that can allow you to still do what you love while also letting you earn money for life’s necessities, like food and a roof over your head. The phrase starving artist sounds lofty unless you’re the artist in question.

1. Side Gigs for Music Artists

You can always follow in Adam Sandler’s footsteps and become a wedding singer.

Actually, any variety of musicians can find work in the wedding industry. The best part is, it’s usually only weekend work and it’s possible to do more than one a day on a busy Saturday in June.

You can teach music too!

A lot of music shops will not only find the customers for you but will also lease a room to you for the lesson. Or leave flyers and business cards at local schools and rec centers. Try friends and families first to build up your experience credentials and obtain referrals.

2. Side Gigs for Visual Artists

Like the wedding singer, photographers can make a lot of money in the wedding industry. Whether you’re a product or landscape photographer, you have the equipment and technical know-how to get into the wedding business. Get yourself invited to some weddings and observe how it’s done.

Currently, most brides prefer a documentary or photojournalism style for their wedding photos, so if you’ve done any kind of street photography, you’re already part-way there.

Visual artists can find a lot of work teaching or tutoring in person, or online. You can even earn money by monetizing YouTube video tutorials. You’ll need an initial investment to set it up, but it can pay for itself in less time than you think.

You can scan your work, if it’s not too large, and make digital copies to sell on sites like Etsy and Shopify or even use social media sites like Instagram and Facebook to promote your work. You can also submit your artwork to a curator. Platforms such as Singulart and ArtPal can help you find your next customer online.

3. Side Gigs for Novelists

While you’re writing, plotting, outlining, or editing your latest work of fiction…

you can use some time away from that to put your writing and grammar skills to good use. Ghostwriting for blogs is a popular gig for writers. Many larger blogs pay a variety of different freelancers to write their posts.

You can also look into iWriter for freelance writing jobs.

Clients submit articles that need to be written, and writers choose to take on as many assignments as they like. UpWork is another great platform for freelance writers. It allows skilled writers and other freelancers to take on a variety of jobs from a diverse set of clients.

4. Make Sure You Get Paid

Freelancing can give you flexibility with your schedule…

and the ability to set your own price and terms, which is why more and more freelancers are finding it attractive. The downside of freelancing is that it can be an arduous process to stay on top of projects, deadlines, and clients who don’t pay on time or at all.

Getting paid on time is crucial to making your business work.

Your best bet is to use an affordable invoicing platform that offers automation features. Your software for invoicing clients should also be easy to customize, so your invoices fit your business.

No one needs to struggle to make ends meet just because their passions lie in the creative world rather than the business one.

It’s possible to mix the two and actually have fun doing it. And, the best part is, it can even make you a better artist in the long run. 

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