Careers in the creative industries: a new approach

Do you want to be creative, and make that creativity the driving force in your career? But you keep hearing that there’s no future in the creative industries? Well, think again. Careers in the creative industries not only play a pivotal role in shaping social narratives, pushing boundaries and redefining the way we experience the world – they’re a crucial part of the economy. Meaning creatives like you have opportunities to put your ideas to work, in a wider range of roles than ever before.

Creative industries sectors

Careers in the creative industries encompasses a diverse range of jobs that revolve around imagination, innovation and artistic expression. These jobs span various sectors, including visual arts, performing arts, media, advertising, design, fashion and more. Collectively, the realm of creative industries stands as a testament to human ingenuity, offering a wide range of roles that enrich our lives, challenge norms and contribute to our ever-evolving culture and innovation.

For example, in the realm of visual arts, painters, sculptors and illustrators breathe life into their creations, while photographers capture moments that evoke emotions and tell stories. Performing arts contribute a distinct dimension to the industry, with actors, dancers, musicians and directors collaborating to deliver captivating performances that entertain, challenge and inspire audiences.

The media sector incorporates professions like writers, journalists, presenters and content creators who wield words and visuals to inform, entertain and influence society. Meanwhile, designers of all kinds, from graphic and interior designers to fashion and game designers, combine functionality and aesthetics into their works, shaping the way we interact with our surroundings. Find out more about why the arts matter.

New opportunities

Beyond the traditional roles, the creative industries have expanded with the digital age. This has given rise to new opportunities such as user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) designers who shape the way we interact with technology, as well as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) developers who craft immersive digital experiences. Additionally, the music and entertainment sectors have evolved to include roles in sound engineering, video production, and social media management. This underscores the transformative role of technology in reshaping creative avenues.

As the world becomes more interconnected, jobs in creative industries continue to adapt and encompass emerging fields like content creation for online platforms, social media marketing and e-sports management. As a result, a lot of positions within the creative industries are pretty interdisciplinary. The skill set you’ll need to thrive is broader than it was in the past.

An expert view

Take journalism. Here’s what highly experienced journalist – and Charles Sturt academic – Jock Cheetham has to say.

“I think future journalists need to be multi-skilled and multidisciplinary.

“It’s hard to do as they still need to do everything else they did in the past, but also add in new skills. So, for example, if you want to be a print journalist, you still need to be well across current affairs, be able to fact check, have writing skills, network for contacts, know about legal requirements in your craft, apply ethics to your work, and so on. But increasingly you probably need to be able to add some photographs to your stories if required (even if just on your smartphone). Plus, be able to shoot video, in a lot of cases edit video. Furthermore, you also need – whatever platform you’re on – to work with social media in a skillful way, and have an awareness of the digital environment to increase the reach of your work.”

Creative industries growth

Sometimes it can seem – according to media reports – that the creative industries are in terminal decline. That they offer nothing tangible to culture, society or the economy.

That’s simply not true.

No less an organisation that the United Nations states that cultural and creative industries provide 6.2 per cent of all employment globally, nearly 50 million jobs worldwide, and employed more young people (15–29 year-olds) than other sectors.

As a creator, you’ll cultivate the ability to think critically, to think big, and also to think outside the box. So when someone says the creative industries are useless, think about how you might tell a different story.

Tips for success in careers in the creative industries

Creativity is important for a career in the creative industries. That’s a no-brainer. But it’s not enough alone. To find your niche and progress your career, you’ll need some more aptitudes and tactics. Here are our top tips.

Keep learning

One of the things that makes the creative industries such an interesting field to work in is that it’s always changing. New ideas, technologies and trends emerge all the time. Dedicate time to practice, learn new techniques and stay up-to-date with industry trends. It will not only mean you will have access to interesting and inspiring tools and ideas, but you’ll also demonstrate to employers that you take the initiative in your learning and are passionate about your field.


Networking is crucial in the creative industries. Attend industry events, workshops and conferences to meet fellow creatives, potential clients and collaborators. Building relationships can lead to exciting opportunities, partnerships and referrals. Use social media platforms and online communities to connect with professionals in your field.

Cultivate resilience

Rejections, setbacks and failures are an inherent part of any creative journey. Rather than viewing them as roadblocks, see them as valuable learning opportunities. Analyse what went wrong, extract lessons and then use that knowledge to improve. Resilience is a key soft skill that will help you see setbacks as necessary stepping stones on the path to success.

Build a strong portfolio

Your portfolio showcases your best work and demonstrates your expertise. Curate a collection of your most impressive and diverse projects to demonstrate your versatility and skill set. Regularly update your portfolio to reflect your latest accomplishments. Also, tailor it to the type of work or clients you’re targeting.

Be professional

If creativity is the heart of your career, professionalism is the backbone. Meet deadlines, communicate effectively and maintain a high level of quality in your work. Respond promptly to emails, be reliable and treat every project, no matter how small, with dedication. Professionalism enhances your reputation and builds trust among clients and collaborators.

Explore careers in the creative industries with the Bachelor of Communication

At Charles Sturt, we know that careers in the creative industries never stop changing. So that’s why we’ve completely reimagined our Bachelor of Communication1. It now gives you skills – hard and soft – that enable you to explore various careers in the creative industries. To take an interdisciplinary approach. And also to find a unique niche where your creativity can flourish.

Get in touch and let’s get you getting creative.

1CRICOS: 0101020