What is a Creative Professional?

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  • Written By: Erin J. Hill
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 11 March 2020
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A creative professional is someone who works in one of several career fields. Graphic designers, writers, fashion designers, photographers, and web designers are all examples of creative professionals. The term is generally used for anyone in a field which requires creative design or ideas. These can include various fields in advertising, media, or home design.

Since there are so many careers which fit the term "creative professional," there are various things which a person within a creative field may do. Even those with the same type of job may do different types of work. For instance, writers may specialize in ad copy, brochures, web copy, books, articles, or reports. Similar professions may also involved various types of work among professionals in those fields.

The educational requirements for a creative professional may also vary based on the actual job. Many creative professional careers are in advertising. They can include graphics professionals, writers, photographers, and concept managers. Each of them works together to create ads, brochures, websites, and other advertising media. Similar teams occur with magazines, websites, and book publishers.

Many creative professional careers require a college education, although some do not. Writers, web designers, and graphic designers do not always need a degree. This is especially true for those who work as freelancers. Other times a certification program may be all that is required. To work with an ad agency, though, a bachelor's degree is highly recommended.


In most creative professional careers, a “book,” or a portfolio, is also generally required, both for freelancers and those looking to work with publishers or ad agencies. This refers to a portfolio of past work. To get samples for the portfolio it is often necessary to do spec work, offer services for free in order to gain experience, or do samples for imaginary companies. All of these options are considered legitimate ways of finding business.

Creative professionals can also include interior decorators, wedding planners, and anyone else who has to use their creativity to do their jobs. Those who come up with concepts for ad campaigns and other projects are also creative in nature, even they are not the ones who carry out these plans. Salaries vary widely depending on the job, the person’s education level, and the location.



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