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From Passion To Profit: How To Make Money Drawing

How to Make Money Drawing

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Many believe that artistry is an unfulfilling career because you need a lot of resources and technical know-how to make it. 

Even more daunting is the idea that you can’t be a successful artist without a well-connected network. 

This myth stems from the notion that one’s exposure and ability to seize opportunities depends on one’s identity, not one’s talents and skills.  

However, I’m here to show you how to make money drawing, and the first step is to liberate your mind from such misconceptions.

Even if you don’t know how to draw, you can learn and monetize the art in no time. I’m not saying it’ll be a walk in the park, but if you’re committed to your goals, I don’t see why you should fail.

I know someone who earns over $100,000 annually from drawing because he’s carved out a unique niche through freelancing and teaching drawing classes.  

Before your mind wanders to the big guns he’s probably acquainted with, I’d like to mention that my friend started off solo. This is how I know the process works, and I’ll show you exactly how. 

How To Make Money Drawing 

There are many ways to make money drawing, from selling your art to teaching drawing classes. You can also explore unconventional options like print-on-demand. 

Whether you want to conduct your dealings online or in person, this article provides a detailed list to help you determine the right path. 

Rest assured that these methods have been tested and proven. All you need to do is pick the most appealing option and strive for success.

1. Sell Art on a Personal Website 

A personal website is one of the best ways to establish your brand and strengthen your online presence. It offers an all-in-one platform to showcase, market, and sell your drawings. 

You can create a simple landing page where your clients can pay for bespoke drawings and services without going through lengthy processes associated with online selling platforms. 

Furthermore, selling your drawings on your website means you keep 100% of your income. This is better than online marketplaces, which require paying 10% to 30% in fees.  

So, how can you start your art-focused website?

Before discussing hosting platforms and domain names, whip up your portfolio to showcase your offerings to potential clients. 

Once you’ve done that, begin scouting for the best hosting sites and compare fees. I recommend WordPress and Hostinger to host a faster loading website.

From there, customize your website to your taste. Next, upload your profile and products, and remember to include the prices and images. 

A sure way to win with a personal website is by optimizing your profile and drawing descriptions for SEO. 

Adding relevant keywords improves your visibility by helping you rank high in search results. If you’re looking for a way to advertise your drawings without spending a dime, then SEO is your friend. 

2. Launch an Etsy Store 

If you dislike the idea of scouting and comparing different hosting platforms and starting a website from scratch, then Etsy is a better idea. 

You can create and customize your storefront on Etsy in under five minutes. Furthermore, Etsy already has millions of users, so you won’t have to struggle to get an audience.

The only downside of Etsy is that it charges $0.20 per listing and 6.5% per completed sale. However, when you look at it, this is a small price compared to the platform’s overwhelming benefits. 

After setting up your storefront and selecting a suitable theme that resonates with your target audience, take clear pictures of your drawings and upload them to Etsy. 

Add detailed descriptions so that clients know what they’re purchasing. Also, remember to include your rates. 

The goal is to give your clients all the required information without unnecessary back and forth.

3. Print-On-Demand 

Print-on-demand is a fantastic option if you’re looking for a stress-free way to monetize your drawing talent while working a 9-5 job. 

As the name suggests, print-on-demand involves printing your drawings on items like mugs, hoodies, and tote bags when clients order. This reduces overstock and losses. 

I like print-on-demand so much because you can work from anywhere. Furthermore, you don’t handle inventory and shipping. 

I’m sure you’re wondering how to sell items without stocking them.

Well, in print-on-demand, you partner with a supplier, like Printify, who manufactures the products and delivers them when a customer orders.  

Start by creating an account on Printify, picking products that match your drawings, and then uploading your designs to the platform. 

From there, integrate your Printify account with your online store or social media platforms like Pinterest and wait for clients to reach out. 

4. Start a YouTube Channel 

This is one of the best ways to make money in 2024. People are making millions on YouTube doing things they love, and you can do that, too, with drawing. 

There’s no limit to how you can monetize your drawing talent on YouTube. The sky is the limit. 

As long as you identify and understand your target audience, you can create whatever content resonates with them. 

You can sell your merchandise directly on YouTube or create tutorial videos for different levels of drawing. 

If you’re juggling drawing with another demanding job, you can create vlogs and give them catchy titles like “A Day in the Life of a Part-Time Artist.” 

Trust me, people will watch anything as long as it’s high-quality and captivating. 

While YouTube is a profitable money-making venture, the challenge lies in amassing a following. 

I’m not talking about big numbers like 100,000. Even getting as few as 1000 subscribers on YouTube can be daunting. However, it’s not entirely unachievable. 

Effective marketing strategies, such as partnering with influencers and running ads, can increase your following substantially. 

In addition to the monetization options I’ve mentioned, you can make money by running ads, engaging in affiliate marketing, and producing sponsored content related to drawing. 

5. Work as a Freelancer 

Want to make money drawing but don’t know where to start? Freelancing allows you to explore different options simultaneously as you figure out what to stick to. 

For instance, you can write articles related to drawing, produce custom artwork for clients, or design infographics. 

Another perk of freelancing is that jobs are readily available on platforms like Upwork, LinkedIn, and Fiverr. You only need to sign up and submit the best pitch to land a gig.

Whether you’re looking to supplement your income or quit your 9-5, freelancing is a great part-time job that can be turned into a full-time venture.

The only problem is that the freelancing field is competitive. To stand out, you must acquire relevant skills and spice up your portfolio and resume. 

6. Teach In-Person Classes 

If you’re skilled in drawing, teaching in-person classes within your neighborhood is an excellent way to make money drawing. 

You can partner with schools and universities in your locality to teach drawing classes as part of the curriculum. However, in this case, the school may take a cut of the proceeds. 

If you want to pocket 100% of your income, consider organizing your own lessons without necessarily being employed at a school. 

Start by creating a website and flyers and brochures indicating your offerings. Then, distribute them throughout the neighborhood and post them on social media to advertise your classes. 

7. Sell Vector Drawings 

Like licensing stock photos for extra cash, you can sell vector drawings on stock photo sites like Shutterstock, Adobe Stock, and iStock. 

This is a suburb passive income stream because you’ll earn money from a drawing years after uploading it to these sites. 

However, you must have many drawings to make a substantial income on stock photo sites. Consider creating bundles of artwork to increase your income potential. 

8. Create an Online Drawing Course 

Here’s an option if you enjoy teaching but prefer working from home to teaching in-person classes. 

Furthermore, online courses are digital products that you can resell severally without recreating. 

The massive demand for online courses is attributed to their flexibility, which you can capitalize on. 

Even if you feel like you have nothing to offer, you can create a short drawing course for beginners and then incorporate videos to make the content engaging. 

From there, organize your course into two subscription tiers: basic and premium. Include additional content like bonus videos, one-on-one Q&A, or worksheets to make it more desirable. 

The last step is choosing an avenue to sell your course. You can do that on your website, blog, YouTube, or social media. 

9. Become a Tattoo Artist 

Are you still seeking a way to make money drawing? Becoming a tattoo artist is worth considering, especially if you can create unique designs. 

You can start a physical tattoo-drawing shop or sell tattoo designs online. Either way, you can make money from your passion for drawing. 

Like any other venture, you must create a diverse portfolio to show your clients what they’re signing up for. 

Also, since tattooing is a delicate art, you must invest in yourself before embarking on this journey. Consider getting certification or becoming an apprentice to learn more about the craft.   

10. Start an Art Blog 

Blogging remains one of the most rewarding money-making ventures out there today. Even as an artist, you can start a blog and profit from it. 

Determine your target audience and choose a niche you want to explore within the drawing field. Don’t worry about standing out in the initial stages. Just start small and keep it simple. 

Growing a blog following can be challenging, but you can advertise your blog through email marketing, social media, and paid ads. 

Once your readership increases, you can sell your drawings on the blog directly or partner with firms to draw their logos and create sponsored content. 

Other ways of monetizing an art blog include affiliate marketing and running ads. Consider offering incentives like free drawing tutorials to encourage your readers to interact with your content. 

You can also read my detailed guide on how to start a blog that makes money.

11. Sell Your Drawings on Social Media 

Social media has a high income potential because of its vast reach and numerous monetization options. That said, it’s among the most common ways to make money drawing. 

Sites like Pinterest, TikTok, and Instagram are good for this venture because you can integrate them into online marketplaces like Etsy and your website. 

Another perk is that you can start making money on social media with as few as 1,000 followers. Create your accounts and post drawing-related content to appeal to your target audience. 

A good strategy to establish yourself in the niche is partnering with similar creators to tap into their audience. You can host live shows together or collaborate on videos. 

Once your social media accounts gain footing, you can sell your drawings or monetize your accounts by running ads, creating sponsored posts, and doing affiliate marketing. 

Tips for Making Money Drawing

Here are some valuable tips to remember if you want to make money drawing. 

Market Yourself Efficiently 

Marketing is the most important step after product creation. Your drawings may be good, but your products may not sell if you don’t market them. 

Marketing your drawings is important, especially if you want to make a substantial income. It generally involves increasing the visibility of your products so that more people know what you’re selling. 

One of the best ways to market your drawings is through social media. Millions of people use platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.

You can market your drawings on social media by collaborating with influencers on live streams and content creation.

Another way to market your products is by letting them speak for themselves. By this, I mean you should consistently create high-quality content to keep your audience wanting more.  

Carve Out a Unique Niche 

While doing several things simultaneously is an excellent way to make money, carving out a unique niche helps with brand establishment and recognition. 

You can delve into the following paths within the drawing niche:

  • Illustrations 
  • Drawing portraits 
  • Technical drawings 
  • Storyboarding 
  • Tattooing 

Choosing one path sets you up for success since more people can now associate your brand with a particular thing. 

It also allows you to focus, improve your skills, and gain expertise in a particular field. 

Be Brand-Oriented 

When starting your drawing gig, don’t just focus on product delivery and ignore your brand. Being brand-oriented helps you establish yourself from the start. 

Establishing your brand will set you up for more gigs, expertise, and money in the future. Think about what your ideal brand looks like, and don’t deviate from that. 

Firstly, your drawings are the face of your brand. So what do they say about it if they’re low quality? What does poor customer service say about your brand?

Focus on delivering high-quality products and good customer service to gain your clients’ trust. This will increase their chances of referring you to others and making subsequent purchases. 

Another way to establish your brand is by having a unique signature that isn’t affiliated with another business. 

For example, you can choose specific colors for your theme or use a specific type of paper for your drawings. 

It doesn’t have to be big, but it has to be something people see and immediately think about your products. 

Invest in Equipment 

An artist is only as good as his tools. Therefore, equipment can be a deal-maker or breaker in this line of work. 

You must be willing to invest in high-quality equipment if you want to hold your products to a high standard. 

From good cameras to editing equipment and microphones, research and select the best tools before embarking on the drawing venture. 

But what if you don’t have money in the beginning?

You don’t have to spend all your money on high-end equipment, especially if you’re still unsure about pursuing drawing as a career. 

If your smartphone has a good camera and microphone, you can use that and upgrade as you make more sales. However, don’t do this if your phone is low-quality.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Where Can I Sell My Art?

You can sell your art on:

  • Your website 
  • An e-commerce store like Etsy
  • Social media platforms like TikTok 
  • Stock photo sites like Shutterstock 
  • Print-on-demand sites like Redbubble 

Where Can I Get Paid To Draw?

You can get paid to draw on freelance sites like Upwork and Fiverr. Sign up, scout for drawing gigs that interest you, and then submit your bid. 

Other ways to make money drawing include:

  • Teaching in-person drawing classes 
  • Creating an online drawing course 
  • Becoming a tattoo artist 
  • Starting a YouTube channel 
  • Starting an art blog 

How Much Can You Make With Drawing?

Your earnings from drawing depend on the type of products you offer and your rate card. 

For platforms like Upwork, you can earn $5-$30 hourly or a fixed rate between $50 and $300 per gig. However, you can always charge more as you advance and gain expertise. 

According to ZipRecruiter, drawing artists make an average of $62 hourly.

Can You Make a Living Off a Drawing?

Yes, it’s possible to make a living from drawing if you focus on building a strong brand foundation. 

ZipRecruiter says drawing artists make over $120,000 annually on average, which is a good sum if you’re just starting. You can increase your rate card as you gain expertise.  

Final Thoughts 

Making money drawing is possible if you focus on establishing your brand and getting recognized as an expert. I hope by now you have several ideas worth trying. 

If you’re still unsure, you can reread this article as many times as possible and combine it with some research to find what works for you. 

Whether you want to supplement your day job or seek a flexible job that lets you work from anywhere, why not get paid for something you enjoy?

Looking for other ways to make money? Check out these posts:

Lydia is a personal finance expert and the founder of Sproutinue, a personal finance site helping you find legit ways to make money, save money, and achieve financial freedom. She has been featured on various major financial publications, including Investopedia, Business Insider, GoBankingRates, and more.

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