CareerBuilder and Emsi Release Top 10 Creative Jobs the Labor Market Needs -- That Will Actually Pay You

CHICAGO, Jan. 31, 2017 /PRNewswire/-- Everyone knows the top-paying jobs are typically found in science and business. However, there are plenty of top-dollar career options for professionals whose passions are in the creative fields: coming up with new and original ideas, projects or products. CareerBuilder and Emsi compiled a list of the top 10 creative jobs the labor market needs based on current number of jobs, wages (an average of at least $45K) and growth from 2011 to 2016.

"Jobs that require creative thinking aren't as numerous as STEM jobs, but that doesn't mean they aren't available or lucrative," said Rob Sentz, chief innovation officer of Emsi. "We continue to see these jobs grow and pay a good salary."


The analysis uses CareerBuilder and Emsi's extensive labor market database, which pulls from a variety of national and state employment resources as well as online job postings. The following are 10 creative occupations where workers will find a larger number of opportunities.

  • Graphic designers: There is a high demand for graphic designers these days. There are currently 287,000 graphic designers in the U.S., and they've added 21,000 new jobs since 2011. They earn about $37K-$57K/year.
  • Public relations specialists: These specialists love working with people (the media) and words (writing material to pitch to the media) to help grow their company. There are 237,000 public relations specialists in the U.S., with 21,000 new jobs since 2011. They earn approximately $43K-$79/year.
  • Producers and directors: Producers are responsible for the big plan of getting the movie made while directors execute actual creative decisions. With 11,000 new producer and director jobs since 2011 (123,000 total in 2016), America sure loves the folks who make good movies. Typically, producers and directors earn $49K-$103K/year.
  • Interior designers: Do you have an eye for turning rooms from ducklings into swans? Interior designers are in charge of colors, lighting, furniture and the like. There are 93,000 interior designers in the U.S. (9,700 new since 2011), and they earn about $38K-$56K/year.
  • Interpreters and translators: Heads up if you speak more than one language: You are in high demand. Since 2011 the U.S. has added 13,000 jobs in interpreting (spoken word) and translation (written word), making a total of 78,000 today. You would earn about $35K-$55K/year.
  • Art directors: People who love both art and the responsibility of leading a team would make good art directors. Directors manage other artists in creating everything from magazines to movie productions. There are 57,000 art directors in the U.S. (5,000 new since 2011) and they earn about $54K-$89K/year.
  • Technical writers: Technical writers thrive on words and tight deadlines. They prepare instruction manuals, how-tos and blog articles. Right now there are 55,000 technical writer jobs in the U.S. (6,500 new since 2011), and they earn about $57K-$87K/year.
  • Multimedia artists and animators: These guys create animation and visual effects for movies, TV, video games, etc. There are 51,000 artists and animators in the U.S., adding 5,200 new since 2011, and they earn about $40K-$64K/year.
  • Commercial and industrial designers: Magicians who combine art, business and engineering — that's these guys. They create new products based on what real people will actually buy. There are 43,000 commercial and industrial designers in the U.S. (4,300 new since 2011). Of all the designer types (graphic, interior), they earn the most at about $51K-$75K/year.
  • Film editors: Sometimes the director edits their own film, sometimes they don't, and that's when the film editor comes in. Editors are in charge of cutting all the footage and turning it into the movie you see on the screen. There are 36,000 film editors in the U.S. (4,800 new since 2011), and they earn about $46K-92K/year.

NOTE: Each of these creative careers typically requires a bachelor's degree.

Do any of these careers fit you and your passions and strengths? Get the answer at Find Your Calling, a free national website that equips students with information to make smarter decisions about their education and careers.

About Emsi
Emsi is a labor market data provider that strives to produce a comprehensive view of the regional workforce and economy to help people make better decisions. Emsi's composite labor market database blends historical and projected industry and occupation trends with rich job posting analytics to show the positions employers are seeking—and hiring—today. Our labor market dataset compiles both real-time and traditional sources, including an aggregation of between 6-8 million unique job postings each month, U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Department of Labor, and U.S. Department of Education National Center for Education Statistics. Since 2000, Emsi data has helped leaders in higher education and workforce/economic development build a better workforce and promote economic prosperity in their regions.

About CareerBuilder®
CareerBuilder is a global, end-to-end human capital solutions company focused on helping employers find, hire, and manage great talent. Combining advertising, software and services, CareerBuilder leads the industry in recruiting solutions, employment screening and human capital management. It also operates top job sites around the world. Owned by TEGNA Inc. (NYSE:TGNA), Tribune Media (NYSE:TRCO), and McClatchy (NYSE:MNI), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, South America, Canada, and Asia. For more information, visit

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SOURCE CareerBuilder