Whether you consider yourself a professional artist or not, as long as you love to draw, there are plenty of ways for you to make money!
Here are seven creative side hustle ideas you can use to “draw” in extra cash.
#1 – Illustrations
Before you start howling about not drawing well enough to create illustrations, think again. Minimal, even primitive, illustrations are extremely popular right now. Artist Lisa Congdon built an empire around simple drawings. Self-published authors are constantly looking for good sources of illustrations, particularly for children’s books. Take a peek at Creative Market and browse the illustration collections sold there. Etsy and Fiverr are other good marketplaces to sell your drawings, especially if you’d like to offer customization or commissioned work.
#2 – Coloring Books
Yes, YOU can create a coloring book filled with your own original drawings! Even though the initial flurry of excitement about adult coloring books has calmed down, sales are still brisk. YouTube channels have been launched by popular “colorists” who post videos of themselves using colored pencils in coloring books like Johanna Basford’s Lost Ocean and Kerby Rosanes’ Imagimorphia, providing free promotion for the artists.
#3 – Greeting Cards
While Hallmark may not beat a path to your door, there are several “print on demand” services where you can upload your card designs for customers to purchase, such as Zazzle, Cafe Press, Greeting Card Universe, and Red Bubble. If you’d rather produce your cards on your own high-quality printer, Etsy and Shopify are both great sales outlets.
#4 – Cartooning
Drawing cartoons can be both therapeutic and lucrative. You can self-publish your cartoons in printed books and/or Kindle, or you could create your own webcomic like Sarah Andersen of Sarah’s Scribbles and other cartoonists on GoComics.com. To learn how Sarah got started, check out her fun class on Skillshare.
#5 – Caricatures
Unlike cartooning, which is published for the masses, caricature drawing is a one-to-one service offering to customers. If you’re outgoing and don’t mind people watching over your shoulder while you draw, you could set up a small table or booth (with permission, of course) in a public place. Or, if you prefer working at home, you can offer your services on Etsy or Fiverr for people who’d like a caricature to use in their marketing materials, or as art for their homes.
#6 – Tattoos
While many tattoo artists refuse to ink anything but their own original artwork, others are happy to reproduce art that customers bring in. If you’re passionate about tattoos and love creating distinctive designs, this could be a great option for you. You could take it to a whole new level by offering to translate a customer’s vision into a one-of-a-kind design. Getting started is as easy as posting your drawings on Pinterest (they have a crazy-active tattoo community) with links to your website or Etsy store.
#7 – T-shirts
People of all ages love t-shirts. People love cute or funny designs, and they don’t have to be anything complicated. Sweet, simple designs for babies and children are always in high demand, as are silly/clever images for adults. You can sell your t-shirt designs on Etsy and Shopify, then have them produced at a print on demand service like Printful, who will pack and ship the shirts directly to your customers. Easy peasy!
I hope these seven ideas got you fired up about earning money with your drawing ability. Let me know what you’re thinking of launching in the comments below.