10 Skills You Need to Become
a Successful Digital Artist

See also: Creative Thinking Skills

Skills are a fundamental requirement in today's world, both at work and in life in general. Skills act as a bridge between yesterday's achievements and today's requirements. Although some of the skills required by digital artists are specific to this in-demand profession, others are more general and will be useful whatever field you chose to work within.

So, what are the skills you need to become a successful digital artist?

Here's a list of the most important skills that digital artists, and others, will need for a successful career.

Detail Orientation

While it is crucial to have all technical skills, this is a mandatory soft skill. Being detail-oriented means having an eye for the minute things. This skill needs to be developed through a constant process of observation and practice.

  • Attention to detail is a prerequisite for creating successful and appealing digital art, be it art for personal use or professional.

  • Focussing on the details is extremely important to bring out the best in art, and is a requirement in both paper and digital art.

Design, Photography and Digital Painting

As a digital artist, you'll need to have a strong foundation in design and photography. This will help you create well-designed and visually appealing artworks.

You don't need to be a master of both disciplines, but it's important to have a good understanding of the basics. If you're not confident in your design or photography skills, there are plenty of online courses and tutorials you can take to improve your abilities.

Digital painting is a specific type of painting using a computer and special software. It's become increasingly popular recently, offering many possibilities and effects that traditional painting can't match.

If you're serious about becoming a digital artist, then learning how to paint digitally is a must. Procreate is a great option to begin with when digital painting and you should ensure you use a selection of the best Procreate brushes for the best results.

Technical Skills

Of course, you'll also need to have strong technical skills to be a successful digital artist. This includes knowing how to use various design and editing software programs, as well as understanding basic concepts like color theory and typography.

If you're not confident in your technical skills, there are plenty of online courses and tutorials you can take to improve your abilities.

Coding Skills

To become a digital artist, you will need to have some coding skills. While many people believe that coding is only for computer programmers, this isn't true.

Coding is becoming an increasingly important skill for all artists, including digital artists. These skills can help you in several ways, for example, by helping you to create websites and portfolios.

They can also help you design interactive artwork and installations. And, of course, they can help you create the actual code for your artwork.

Digital Marketing & Social Media

If you want to sell your art or get noticed by potential clients, you need to know how to market yourself and how to use social media marketing / digital marketing.

Marketing yourself and your work includes creating a strong online presence, knowing how to network, and understanding how to sell your work. While it's not strictly necessary to be a marketing expert, it is helpful to know the basics.


Communication is a key skill in any profession, but it is especially important for digital artists as they often work with clients who are not familiar with the art world. Therefore, it's important to be able to explain your artwork and what you're trying to achieve. It's also important to be able to listen to feedback and take it on board.


This one is obvious. To be a successful digital artist, you need to be creative. But what does that actually mean?

Being creative means being able to come up with new ideas and seeing things in new ways. It also means being open to trying new things and taking risks. It's essential to experiment with different techniques and styles.

Stress Management & Time Management

The life of a digital artist can be stressful as you will often have tight deadlines and high expectations. Therefore, it's essential to be able to manage your stress levels.

There are several ways to do this. For example, you can take breaks, exercise, and meditate. You can also try different stress management techniques, such as deep breathing and progressive muscle relaxation.

Also, as a digital artist, you will need to manage your time well as you will often have tight deadlines to meet. In addition, if you're working on a project with multiple team members, then you will need to be able to coordinate your work.

It's essential to be able to plan your time and manage your workload. This way, you can ensure that you meet deadlines and don't get overwhelmed by work.


As a digital artist, it's important to network. This is because you never know when a potential client or collaborator might come along.

Networking also gives you the opportunity to meet other artists and learn from them. You can also get feedback on your work and find out about new opportunities.

Continuous Learning

The world of digital art is always changing. New software and hardware are constantly being released. And new techniques and styles are always emerging. Therefore, it's essential to be a continuous learner.

This means that you should always be learning new things and keeping up to date with the latest trends. It's also important to experiment with different techniques and styles as, this way, you can find what works best for you and your artwork.

Intercultural Awareness

As a digital artist, you will often be working with people from all over the world. Therefore, it's important to have intercultural awareness.

This means understanding and respecting different cultures, being aware of any potential cultural misunderstandings, and being open to learning about new cultures.


There are many skills that are required to be a successful digital artist, but this list provides a good place to start to evaluate your own skillset. You could also try taking the Skills You Need Interpersonal Skills Assessment to see what other soft skills you have or are lacking.

However, there is no denying that digital art is one of the fastest emerging professions and so investing in the skills required to succeed in this profession will be time well spent.

About the Author

Vibhu Dhariwal is Co-Founder & Director of Marketing at Digital Gratified Pvt. Ltd., a SaaS Digital Marketing Company. He likes sharing his experience through outreach marketing, link building, content marketing, and SEO with readers. To know more about him, you can connect with him on LinkedIn.