I’m not talking about waiting tables or tending bar.
I’ve had a lot of jobs. One day at my current day job, someone asked me how many I’ve had. After counting, I realized that I have had over 30 days jobs. Some of them were great day jobs for actors. Others not so much. Here’s the run down of the jobs that I have seen work out best for actors.
Interior Designer – Most designers work as consultants, setting their own hours. They work independently while creating their designs & plans. After plans are drawn up, Interior Designers will often oversee the work that is done on the home or office. Some get heavily involved with the decoration or installation while others merely implement and oversee the plans. eHow has a great article on becoming a designer.
Personal Trainer – Great for fit actors who are good teachers. Personal trainers often have the benefit of setting their own schedule. The pay is good but you have to build up a client base. You must complete a minimum education requirement and pass a certification exam to become a trainer.
Freelance writing – If you consider yourself a decent writer, you might try finding some gigs as a freelancer. Elance.com is a great resource for freelancing. Companies often need ad copy, website copy, technical writing, and other forms of writing done, and you can build up a great client base by creating great work.
Graphic Design - As more and more companies build websites and create online content, the need for graphic designers has exploded. If you are handy with Photoshop, Illustrator, and other design software, then you could make a career here. Graphic designers often work from their home or the local coffee shop. How to be a graphic designer. Read about Graphic designer & artist Alex Gerasev.
Programming – I have a friend who works out of his basement. He gets paid not on the hours that he works, but on the projects that he completes. He has quite a bit of flexibility in his schedule and he makes enough money to support his wife and two children.
SEO & Internet Marketing – SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. While there is a lot of technical things that need to be learned when it comes to SEO, but creative people tend to do really well in search marketing. To learn a little more about the SEO field, visit Aaron Wall’s SEOBook.com.
Research Assistant – College professors (especially the busy ones with lots of grant money) need smart, self starting assistants who can help them with … well, research. Whatever that is. The bonus part: research assistants often set their own hours in what often amounts to years long research projects. As long as you don’t get a crazy professor as your boss, you’re golden!
Event Planner – If you throw a killer party, you might try being an event planner. It’s a great gig if you can land those all important corporate clients. A little bit of salesmanship, a constant smile, and one very organized indivdual can lead to a great second career.
Promotional Modeling – I’ve done this myself on occasion. Don’t let the term modeling confuse you. As long as you aren’t too short and it doesn’t hurt to look at you, most promotional companies will take you. What do promo models do? Show off cars, hand out goodies, take pictures next to important people. Do a Google search for promotional modeling companies near you.
Photography – I won’t say who, but a certain friend of mine has made a career out of photography and he didn’t have any experience before he landed his first big gig. He did a good job with it and got some great referrals out of it, so it all worked out. Not everyone can do that, but if you’ve got an eye for composition, lighting, and beauty then you can make a great side income as a photographer. Especially with weddings, where photography packages are often in excess of $3000.
What about you? What days jobs have you seen other actors succeed at?