Sunday, December 14, 2008
Starving (Lady) Artist
The NEA has just released a comprehensive study of the pay differences between men and women working in the arts. Sadly, working in the arts does not set us apart from the rest of the work force. In fact women in the arts make .75 to every dollar that a male artist makes. That's two cents less than the overall gender pay gap.
As the chairman of the NEA, Dana Gioia, puts it "Committed and entrepreneurial, women artists are making enormous progress, but still lag behind their male colleagues economically, especially in fields such as photography, design, and architecture.”
Don't be afraid to ask around and find out how much the guys you work with are making. I know this is hard, been there done that, but over the years it will totally matter. I once heard financial advisor Suze Orman suggest that a woman tack on 20% to a freelance job "Because women generally underestimate their worth". This is a good lesson for freelancers and fine artists.
There are a whole bunch of other interesting statistics you can check out. You can download the study here:http://www.arts.gov/research/ResearchNotes_chrono.html
Or read about it here: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/culturemonster/2008/12/nea-women.html