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Examples of Painting Trades Careers

The painting trades careers include industrial painting, house painting, painting maintenance work and a lengthy list of technical skills. The painting trades are also businesses, involving a lot of contract work, site work, and time management.

Career path

The painting trade career starts with an apprenticeship. This is a combination of classroom work and on-site painting experience. Training involves working with many different types of paint, surfaces and different work environments. This is actually extremely good training for painters, who will be expected to work in multiple environments working on many different and sometimes technically demanding jobs.

Career progression

The painting trade is allied with many other trades and types of businesses, including:

  • Construction
  • Industrial production
  • Renovation and interior design
  • Landscaping
  • Commercial premises maintenance
  • Auto industry (industrial painting contracting)

As you can see, each of those industries also involves many different types of painting methodologies, from automated to traditional manual painting jobs. This type of painting is also a creative process, often involving creating colour schematics as well as the technical aspects of physically painting.

In industrial production, the painting may be done by machines but the colour mix and composition of the paints is costed and decided by painting technicians. Modern painting is an extremely technical trade, including use of the new polymer-based paints and new methods of application.

The change in the nature of the painting trade has also resulted in a change in the types of career progression available. There are in fact many more career opportunities available in this trade than ever before. Career progression is based on technical skills, business skills and experience.

Because much of the work on the painting trade is contract work, this is also an extremely competitive business environment. One of the basic mechanisms of career progression is a range of business associations, including contract relationships with developers, builders, interior decorators and in some cases major industries. Many painters specialize in particular types of painting and 'tune' their businesses to local demand.

The painting trades career is a lifetime career, and with extremely portable job skills painters can both work for other people, get work easily and operate personal businesses for additional income. Successful painters know the industry, know their markets and know how to deal with other businesses on a contract basis.

Commercial painting requires a very high level of skills, but many painters are quite literally started with a paintbrush and wound up and operating large corporations. For those wanting a career based on personal skills and business abilities, the painting trades career may be the perfect opportunity to put those skills to work.