How To Write An Artist’s Resume

posted in: Writing | 0

Note from Richard Dee.

This article was submitted to me for publication and it was so useful that I decided to post it unedited. I have received this short bio of the writer, Jennifer Scott.


Jennifer is a business developer working in different areas of education, technology, security and various types of online marketing. Prior to business developing Jennifer was a consultant at Deloitte, and managed security services providers and developers with a wide range of security solutions.

Here’s what she had to say,


As an artist, you’ll feel as though that you can’t create a regular resume. This is true to some extent, but you are still going to need one in your professional life. That’s why you need a well-written resume that shows just why you’re unique and special as an artist. Here’s how you can write your resume and get the jobs and opportunities that you want.

How your resume should work

As an artist, your resume won’t look like most peoples’. However, you can draw upon some of the conventions of resume writing in order to get a resume that does you justice. The point of most resumes is to give an overview of what you’ve done over your professional life. The way you lay it out will be up to you, but this guide can show you what will need to be included as you write.

The artist’s resume layout

Your resume should contain the following sections. You may choose to change them around depending on your needs, but they will need to be included in some format:

  • Contact details: You’ll need to start with your name and contact details, as they’ll be needed if anyone reads your resume and wants to get in touch. What amount of detail you give to this section is up to you. You can simply give your name, contact number and email, or you can include your address too.
  • Education: This is especially important if you’ve got any degrees or qualifications in art. If you don’t have the qualification yet, include details of when you expect to graduate and your anticipated grade.
  • Professional experience: This will be any teaching and professional positions you’ve had that are relevant to your current career. You’ll need to include the dates, the employer, and the location.
  • Awards/grants/fellowships: Here, you’ll be listing all of your art related achievements. Think including residencies, grants you’ve received, or any awards that you’ve won in your line of work. Remember to keep this section related to your art itself.
  • Exhibition record: This is possibly the most important section of your resume, and so may need to be included further up the document. You’ll need to document every exhibition you’ve been a part of, either as a group or solo. If you have a few different exhibitions under your belt, then it could be split into two different sections to highlight both types.
  • Collaborative partnerships: If you work in fields such as digital arts or new media, then you may need this section. List the works you worked on with others, as well as where you created them.
  • Bibliography: Here’s where you’ll need to list where you’ve been interviewed, written for publications, or otherwise been published. The best way to document this list is by using the Chicago Manual of Style.
  • Lectures: If you’ve given lectures on your artwork in the past, this is where you’ll document them. You may title this section ‘Visiting Lectures’ or ‘Panels’, depending on how you’ve presented in the past.
  • Collections: If some of your work is in collections, list them here. You’ll need to state the name of the collection or collector, the city, and the state.

Basic Resume Writing Tips

Now you have your outline, you can start writing your resume. Here are some tips on general resume writing that will help you write a good document.

Keep it to the point

If someone is reading your resume, they don’t have time to be poring through all the details of your life. Keep your resume just to the points in your career that are relevant. You may find you need to edit it, depending on what you’re using the resume for.

Check your facts

The gallery your work is currently in may be working under a different name, or the school’s phone number may have changed. Before you include a fact, check it. You don’t want to miss out because you got something simple wrong.

Use online tools

Online tools can help you get your resume written well. Try these tools when you’re writing:

  • Resumention: You can give your details to the expert writers here, and they can create a professional resume for you.
  • Best Australian Writers: Find yourself a writing tutor here, and they can walk you through the resume writing process.
  • UK Writings: This specialised resume service will proofread and edit what you’ve written, to ensure that it’s at its best.
  • Top Canadian Writers: Talk to the writers here if you’re stuck with your resume form, as they can often help you with any thorny issues.

Use a good font

The font you use is important. It needs to be easy to read and appealing, especially as you’re in a field where you’ll be paying attention to the details. Never go below point 10 for size, and use a font such as Arial that’s easy to read.

Don’t forget your formatting

Good formatting is crucial. Use headings, bullet points, and white space to draw the reader’s eye to where you want it to go. If you use the above format, your resume should be laid out pleasingly.

Keep multiple formats

Different institutions will want different formats when you submit your resume, so keep this in mind. A Word document is a good idea as it’s easy to update as and when you need to. As well as this, keep a PDF version in reserve, as the formatting stays the same no matter what system you view it on. If an institution doesn’t specify a format, use a PDF to send your resume over.

As you can see, it’s easier than you’d think to put a proper artist’s resume together. All you have to do is follow the outline provided and you’re halfway there. Make the proper adjustments depending on your career, and don’t be afraid to let your achievements stand out. A good resume can show people just where you’re going, and how you’re going to progress in your career.

If there are any copyright issues in the article, I apologise but have posted this in good faith.


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