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Occupational Profile

Craftsperson

Craftspersons use artistic and manual skills to design and make objects that may be functional, ornamental or communicative.

  • Avg. Salary N/A
  • Avg. Wage N/A
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook N/A
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Artisan, Artist, Carver, Craft Artist, Glass Artist, Leather Worker, Potter, Weaver

NOC & Interest Codes
The Craftsperson is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Artisans and Craftspersons
NOC code: 5244
INNOVATIVE

Interest combinations are unique to each of the occupations in this National Occupational Classification (NOC) group. Please consult the 2003 NOC Career Handbook for further information.

OBJECTIVE

Interest combinations are unique to each of the occupations in this National Occupational Classification (NOC) group. Please consult the 2003 NOC Career Handbook for further information.

METHODICAL

Interest combinations are unique to each of the occupations in this National Occupational Classification (NOC) group. Please consult the 2003 NOC Career Handbook for further information.

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation. 

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Craftspersons work with a wide range of materials and produce many different types of products. They are often known by titles that describe what they work with or produce. Therefore, there are myriad of terms used to describe workers in this occupation.

Craftspersons may specialize in designing and creating particular types of crafts or they may work in several media. Some of the crafts produced include:

  • clay products such as pottery, ceramics, sculpture, tiles or art objects
  • leaded, cut and stained, flameworked and blown, cast, fused or other glass objects ranging from beads to architectural installations
  • traditional or contemporary jewellery
  • metal objects such as furniture, utensils, light fixtures, knives or architectural details from materials such as wrought iron, steel, or cast bronze or aluminum
  • wood objects such as furniture, tableware, wildlife sculptures, musical instruments or architectural features
  • fibre and fabric objects such as quilts, costumes, paper, woven goods or fibre art
  • saddles or other leather objects
  • ethnocultural or Aboriginal objects such as traditional or contemporary ceremonial pieces or dance outfits
  • special event items such as Ukrainian eggs or wedding jewellery.

In addition to working in their craft, craftspersons spend a considerable amount of time on business activities such as marketing and accounting.

Working Conditions
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Most craftspersons work in home-based studios and set their own hours. Depending on their craft, they may have to observe safety precautions to avoid injury when working with hazardous chemicals, materials or processes.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Craftspersons need to possess:

  • a passion for making things
  • creativity and talent
  • determination, self-discipline and self-motivation
  • good visual, tactile and spatial perception
  • good hand-eye co-ordination and dexterity.

They should enjoy using knowledge of their media to design and construct new things, and using tools and equipment to do work requiring precision.

Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 26, 2017

There are no standard educational requirements for craftspersons. However, to be successful, they need:

  • in-depth knowledge of their forms, materials and processes
  • knowledge of related history and culture
  • the ability to be innovative
  • small-business skills
  • the ability to build a reputation through networking, self-promotion and marketing.

Craftspersons generally acquire their skills by taking related courses or programs, working with master craftspersons, or immersing themselves in cultural traditions. Many craftspersons travel outside of the province or even outside of the country for advanced study in their field.

Training programs in crafts, arts, design or human ecology may be offered by post-secondary schools, artisan guilds or private studios. Continuing education programs may be offered on an as-needed basis. For many continuing education courses, there are no specified admission requirements.

In some crafts, safety training is extremely important.


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Elsewhere in Canada, related courses and programs are offered by colleges and private vocational schools including:

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Most craftspersons are self-employed. They may do custom work, sell wholesale to retail outlets and craft galleries, or market their work directly to the public. Those who market their work directly may sell items from home studios or at craft shows, or arrange to have their work displayed in retail stores, galleries, museums, office buildings or other public spaces. They also may market their work on the Internet or through publications and competitions.

Some craftspersons are employed as instructors by post-secondary schools, private studios and recreational organizations. Craftspersons also may be employed as arts administrators, exhibit designers or curators.

Craftspersons are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 5244: Artisans and craftspersons. In Alberta, 75% of people employed in this classification work in the following industries:

The employment outlook (PDF) in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the industries listed above)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions)
  • size of the occupation.
Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Craftspersons often work in other occupations to supplement their incomes until they have established a market for their products. Incomes for established craftspersons vary considerably.

According to the 2013 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans in the Artisans and Craftspersons occupational group earned on average from $16.63 to $20.78 an hour. The overall average wage was $18.53 an hour. More recent data is not available.

Related High School Subjects
  • Fine Arts
    • Visual Arts
  • English Language Arts
  • Trades, Manufacturing and Transportation
    • Fabrication
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Fine Arts and Performing Arts
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Alberta Craft Council website: www.albertacraft.ab.ca

American Craft Council website: www.craftcouncil.org

Canadian Crafts Federation website: canadiancraftsfederation.ca

Cultural Human Resources Council, The Art of Managing Your Career website: www.culturalhrc.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 20, 2017. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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