17th May 2021
The Global Media Site for Entertainment.

The Dangers of Gig Work

gig work
By Artist's Strategy

Gig work has been the foundation of an artist’s side hustle for as long as I can remember. Most of us have been waiters, hostesses, babysitters, drivers, bartenders and whatever else seemed to keep us afloat. Creatives are drawn to gig work because it allegedly allows them to put the bulk of their attention on their art. Gig work supposedly provides the flexibility we require in order to really do what we love. Today I’m here to challenge these notions and provide some insight into the dangers of gig work.


  • Flexibility of schedule
  • Easy, fast money
  • Personal disconnect
  • Can jump from job to job


  • Flexibility of schedule…at the risk of losing the job at any point
  • Easy, fast money…that’s inconsistent, with little control over how much you take in at any given point
  • Personal disconnect…zapping you of energy and putting you at risk of a negative mindset
  • Can jump from job to job…maintaining the hectic, scattered lifestyle we’ve come to expect that keeps us from structure and organization

We believe in building a holistic approach to all the facets of your business (including what brings home the bacon) in order to keep your focus on your primary goals.

On Shark Tank when they discover that some of the entrepreneurs (which all artists are) are currently holding down second jobs on top of the one they’re trying to start, they all balk and demand they give all their attention to what they’re trying to accomplish. That’s because the sharks know that they need to be “all in” in order to make it happen.

You may think that gig work allows you to be “all in” for your artistic career, but it actually isn’t. It’s a temporary fix, often one that comes with a lot of insecurity and stress. You are avoiding asking the question of how am I going to do this for the rest of my life?

Our circumstance is unique in so much as, for most, our jobs continually come to an end. Because we are so rarely afforded the opportunity to rely on our art, and only our art full time, we must build a secondary income stream that affords us true flexibility of schedule, the ability to set an expected plan for what money is coming in and keeps us motivated and organized.

Building that secondary income stream is a course unto itself so, for now, consider the gig work of the past, present and /or future. Given the thoughts above, does it continue to serve you? If not, let us know. We have some more insights into what may.

Also by Artist’s Strategy:

Formatting is Queen

Black Lives Matter: We Must All Do Better

Join TheatreArtLife to access unlimited articles, our global career center, discussion forums, and professional development resource guide. Your investment will help us continue to ignite connections across the globe in live entertainment and build this community for industry professionals. Learn more about our subscription plans.

The Market

Love to write or have something to say? Become a contributor with TheatreArtLife. Join our community of industry leaders working in artistic, creative, and technical roles across the globe. Visit our CONTRIBUTE page to learn more or submit an article.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email