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Art Director jobs and careers

An Art Director is a conceptual role typically found within agencies. The Art Director will often be paired with a Creative Copywriter. Their job is to create concepts and then work closely with the rest of the creative team (especially Designers) to deliver those concepts into creative collateral. An Art Director could be above the line, below the line or fully integrated into delivery. The Art Director is a senior and often leadership position within the agency team. Art Directors are often good illustrators, handy with a pencil and pad - able to sketch and scamp ideas when needed. Some Art Directors prefer to focus on the conceptual aspect whereas others will be confident visualising their designs. 

Why consider a career as an Art Director?
Art Direction is a fast-paced and varied role where no two days will be the same. You’ll get the opportunity to be creative on a daily basis and enjoy defining the creative vision across a wide range of media. 

What a career or job as an Art Director may entail…
As part of a creative studio, your job will be conceptual in the main. Depending on team structure, you may work in partnership with a copywriter when crafting ideas but this varies from studio to studio. The Art Director will work closely with the Creative Director to deliver concepts across a variety of channels; these could be digital, DM (direct marketing) or digital. Once an overarching concept is defined, they will work collaboratively with the rest of the creative team (Designers, Artworkers, Copywriters etc.) to finalise the concepts into finished designs ready for launch.

Typical role titles include
Junior Art Director
Midweight Art Director
Senior Art Director
Senior Creative

Career progression example
Art Director
Senior Art Director
Head of Art Direction

Salary Benchmarks
At an entry level, Art Directors on average will be earning between £32k-£40k. At the mid-level you’d be looking to earn £40k-48k and Seniors would be looking to earn £48k+.

Is it right for me? The skills it takes...
An overarching knowledge of design concepts is key, as while you don’t necessarily have to come from a design background, you should have sound knowledge of design to be able to effectively lead creative teams and direct design processes and projects.

What qualifications does it take?
You will usually need a foundation degree or diploma within a relevant subject. For example, these could include graphic design, graphic communication, illustration, art, creative writing, marketing or branding.


Our Creative recruitment team

Our latest Creative jobs

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  • 3rd Sep

    Studio Coordinator

    — Seeking an ambitious design grad

    Further your career in UX/ UI/ tech and product development Enjoy a modern, start-up culture. Opportunities to train and develop My client is looking for a design graduate with a will to learn, develop and grow within this role. The organisation needs a coordinator for their brand new design studio and with it comes the opportunity to work with and be mentored by a number of talented designers, developers and product staff. What you’ll be doing This is a cutting-edge working environment with pioneering tech, a progressive approach to work and little hierarchy. The team produce tech products and services and you will be involved with supporting all aspects of their production. What experience you’ll need to apply An entrepreneurial spirit, self -starting ad open to varied agile working. Supporting portfolio management, innovation and the daily activities of the innovation team. You will need to have an undergraduate degree in design (or equivalent) Stakeholder management skills, team collaboration and the ability to work between different product teams and internal staff. Understanding and the ability to perform in and agile environment that is ever changing and stretching. Have a real passion for user experience and the industry as a whole. What you’ll get in return for your experience  Performance related bonus. Up to 30 days annual leave. Strong pension contribution. Healthcare. Life assurance and training and development resources. This is a graduate role with a focus on learning and growing as you are exposed to new ways and techniques of working. What's next? Please apply with an up to date CV to be considered.
  • 28th Aug

    Production Manager/ Project Manager

    — 5-Month Contract - Creative Agency

    Bath (outskirts)
    Up to £36k/ £160 per day
    5-month Production Manager contract available with an immediate start. Lovely offices in a rural location – commutable from Bristol and Bath via car. Work for an award-winning digital studio on cutting edge creative projects. This is a fantastic opportunity for an experienced Production Manager to join an impressive agency on a 5-month contract to deliver an animation project for one of their key clients. What you’ll be doing You will be working on a brand-new project from one of the agencies longest standing largest clients with tight deliverables, so will be thrown in the deep end from day one. You will be working closely with the creative team ensuring that projects are running smoothly, on time and budget and deliverables are going to be met – and everything along the way from writing briefs, budget management and working closely with the account management team to ensure the client is updated along the way.  The pace can be fast and projects exciting, the team share a true passion for the sector specialism, which results in the production of award winning and stunning online, mobile apps, animation orientated and digital solutions for some of the country’s best loved brands and titles. What experience you need Experience in a similar role as Production Manager, Project Manager or Senior Project Manager. Experience delivering film and/or video projects. Animation experience is desirable. Experience working on pre-production, storyboards and design pack desks. You have worked in a fast-paced environment and able to keep a cool head under pressure. You will be immediately available (or available within 1 week) and able to commit to the full duration of the contract (5 months). Due to the rural location of this creative studio, you’ll need a driving license and access to a car.  What you’ll get in return for your talents In return you can expect a salary in the region of £30k - £36k or day rate £150 - £160 per day, a fantastic working environment and the opportunity to work for one the most creative agencies in the South West. What’s next? If you fit the above criteria then apply now with an up to date CV.

Creative case studies

Create Health

Establishing a creative department with the right mindset

  • Create Health is specialist healthcare marketing agency with a mission and fascination for new healthcare technologies, treatments and methods of care. 
  • In the search for a new Creative Director we were approached to match them with an individual that could take their creative to the next level, be part of the board and support the growth of the agency over the coming years.
  • We ran an end-to-end recruitment campaign in search for this pivotal hire, including advertising and an extensive head hunt within our diverse network.
  • Since 2014, we’ve helped the Creative Director establish a permanent creative team with the right mindset – consisting of an Art Director, Designers, a Copywriter and a freelance pool of trusted creatives that scale up the studio at short notice.

“Since joining Create Health, I’ve had a clear vision of what I want to build. ADLIB have invested the time to truly understand this, meaning the permanent and freelance candidates they send through are always spot on. This not only makes the process easier and more enjoyable, it saves a lot of time.”

Phil Blackmore, Creative Director at Create Health

Candidate Experience

Rita Cervetto, Service Designer

  • Rita is a Service Designer, with a background of UX and visual design.While working full time in a design studio in Manchester (Lovedby), she had recently moved to Bristol and approached us to get an understanding of the local market, especially opportunities in product and UX and to line up projects in the South West.
  • We took the time to understand what really makes Rita tick, appreciating that contract was her focus at the time but also understanding that the right permanent job could be a great move for her.
  • We matched her with exactly that as one of our clients were looking for a UX Lead to work on a new digital service. An opportunity that really got her excited.
  • She started in this Lead role, as Senior UX Designer within Ovo Energy, looking after the experience of thousands of customers from day one.

"From the moment I got in touch with ADLIB I felt I was in safe hands. Sam’s understanding of the industry was instrumental in me making the decision to give up consulting and take this epic opportunity at Ovo. He helped me throughout the interview process, kept me informed and offered great advice at key times. I’d recommend them to any professional looking for knowledgeable support finding great career opportunities.”

Rita Cervetto, Service Designer

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