How to Become a


The complete career guide to be a Muralist: salary, job growth, employers, best schools, and education you may need to get started.

Why We Love It

  • $54,170
    Potential Avg. Salary
  • 3%
    Job Growth Rate
  • Growing Demand
    Job Outlook
  • Creativity Focused
    Career Attribute

A muralist is responsible for creating original works of art utilizing different kinds of media and techniques, for creative expression as desired. To be in this industry, one has to be comfortable working on indoor and outdoor surfaces.

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What is a Muralist?


Muralists typically perform the following tasks on a daily basis:

  • Pay close attention to all artistic works in progress, as some murals may take up to months and years to complete.
  • Implement various techniques such as marbling, sketching, texturing, computer imaging, graining wood and ragging on a range of materials to complete small and large-scale murals within the assigned deadline.
  • Starting from initial project plans to the final product, collaborate with clients for a clear understanding of their specific requirements, to bring their vision to life.
  • Maintain meticulous art portfolios to keep an ongoing record of unique styles, skills and interests for developing a solid reputation in this field.

Day In The Life

Muralist spend most of their time working on existing projects or signing up new ones. Murals require painstaking levels of attention to notice the finest detail, thus taking up hours in a day. While much of the work involves painting, murals differ due to the vast possibility of materials used and not being limited to the confines of a frame. You may be recreating a classic painting at an entrance lobby or designing mural paintings for a courthouse or city hall. Depending on where your work takes you, you could be working for long hours in an uncomfortable position at a studio space or on a property (either public or private).

Work Schedule

As a muralist, work hours are mostly flexible and based on your own preferences unless there are agreed upon deadlines for projects. This rarely arises except in the case of a major event, such as an exhibition or competition. Artwork assignments can be pursued at one’s studio space or require travel to the respective space. For instance, you can expect to design and paint artistic works on wide surfaces, which include walls, floors or ceilings. For this reason, your work setting may be a public building structures and cultural institutions, whether it is a library, church, or museum in an urban or rural area.

Growth Of The Job

As per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for muralists and other artists, will grow slower than other professions at 2 percent between 2014 to 2024. With very few part-time or full-time engagements in this sector, there is no shortage of talented and experienced artists. Several studios and private clients are always proactive scouting for potential muralists that can demonstrate a superior level of skill and creativity. Muralists often offer to finish murals for reasonable fees at corporate offices, hotels, restaurants, marketing agencies, etc. in order to promote their work and spread the word.

Typical Employers

Muralists are employed by a wide range of businesses, often utilising their artistic skills and design expertise. You may be hired to enhance the decoration and theme of public-facing industries like hotels, bars and restaurants. City government bodies also require muralists from time to time to support urban development projects for creating original artwork or replicating classic works of art for improving public buildings around the area. Other possible employers are educational institutions like schools, colleges or universities and individuals keen on beautification of a property through murals.

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How To Become a Muralist

One of the basic requirements to flourish in this career path is building on a portfolio of creative projects to find better job opportunities as they come along. While a specific formal education is not outlined for aspiring muralists, most fine artists gain an academic specialisation or a technical skill to distinguish themselves from other competition in the industry. For example, many muralists have a degree or diploma in fine arts.

The key to success as a muralist is to start early by familiarizing yourself with relevant subject areas such as art history and design theory. Attending art classes can also give you greater exposure to different artistic styles and techniques. You can also hone your craft by finding inspiration in the art of major artists. Further, a college-level certificate workshop or coursework for credit will always help when developing your knowledge as a muralist. Some also recommend acquiring experience through the apprenticeship model, whereby you work alongside an expert painter or tile artist to learn the skills of the trade first hand.

Muralist Salary Data

We’ve provided you the following to learn more about this career. The salary and growth data on this page comes from recently published Bureau of Labor Statistics data while the recommendations and editorial content are based on our research.

National Anual Salary

Low Range




High Range


National Hourly Wage

Low Range




High Range


How do Muralist salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Muralist's can make an average annual salary of $54,170, or $26 per hour. This makes it an Above Average Salary. On the lower end, they can make $29,250 or $14 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #337 Nationally for All Careers

Highest Education Among Muralists

  • 1.9%   Doctorate
  • 12%   Masters
  • 45%   Bachelors
  • 9%   Associates
  • 18.4%   College
  • 10.7%   High School
  • 3%   Less than High School

Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs


2024 Est. Jobs


Job Growth Rate


Est. New Jobs


How does Muralist job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of 800 jobs for a total of 27,100 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a 3% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Below Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #519 Nationally for All Careers

What Companies Employ The Most Muralists

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Self-employed workers 14,300 100 0%
Independent artists, writers, and performers 3,400 200 0%
Other miscellaneous store retailers 600 --- ---

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