4 Common Hobbies You Can Make Money From (You Probably Have at Least One)

4 Common Hobbies You Can Make Money From (You Probably Have at Least One)

We’ve all got our hobbies—pastimes that we dedicate some of our spare hours to because we find them fun or fulfilling.

But some of these hobbies, if we’re willing to take them seriously, can be turned into a stream of income. Depending on how you direct your talents and interests, you can get anything from free stuff to extra spending money to a full-fledged business or platform for marketing your own or others’ products—all by doing something you might’ve done anyway.

Here’s a list of 8 common hobbies that you can potentially make money from, whether it’s through freelancing, becoming an affiliate, building an audience, or starting a business.

Everyday Hobbies that Make Money:

  • Writing
  • Illustration and design
  • Comedy
  • Cooking
  • Traveling
  • Photography
  • Gaming
  • DIY crafts

1. Writing

Writing and publishing online has the potential to offer you a lot of practical value outside of being a mere hobby. You can use it to further your career and establish yourself as an expert on a topic. You can build a platform for sharing your ideas. Or you can rent out your skills.

The most obvious way to make money writing is to sell it as a service—freelancing on sites like Upwork or Fiverr, or reaching out directly to blogs for paid gigs. Good content writers with niche expertise are usually in demand.

However, if you have the discipline and know how to write a good blog post, then you can create your own blog-based business by picking a niche and building an audience over time.

Whether you care about tech or travel or cooking, our guide to starting a blog that you can turn into a business will walk you through what you need to know.

2. Illustration and design

Like writing, illustration and design are skills that you can offer as a freelancer. Fiverr, in particular, is where a lot of newer artists with a variety of illustration styles find clients in need of their skills, whether it’s for marketing projects or custom portraits.

But if you’d like to maintain control, you can put your art on things, from t-shirts to posters to canvases and sell those instead. It’s important to understand that in order to turn your art into a product, you’ll need to cater to a specific market or build a unique brand. The former is usually easier.

Hate Copy is an excellent example of a business that was started by an artist putting their art onto things that people can buy.

And you don’t need to front the money for inventory either. Print-on-demand services offer a low-risk way to monetize your art by selling apparel and home decor. You’ll just need to create mockups of your products to list online. Once you make sales and know what designs and creative get the most demand, you can consider investing in your own inventory.

3. Comedy

Are you good at making people laugh? Do you know what the hottest memes are right now?

Why not take that sense of humor and use it to build an audience on the internet?

You can probably think of several Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter accounts that have amassed large audiences simply by curating memes and viral videos, or tapping into a niche of humor that no one else is serving.

Once you have an audience, you can partner with brands to do sponsored posts or turn your best running jokes into t-shirts and other products.

Examples of this include:

  • The Dog Rates Twitter account
  • The Meme Bible
  • Yes Theory’s YouTube Channel

4. Cooking

Food has become an art form worthy of taking elaborate pictures and the time to perfect as a craft. It’s not only amateur chefs who are involved, but people with adventurous palettes looking to explore new tastes.

It’s a hobby you can share with the world in a variety of different ways, from starting a blog, YouTube channel, or Instagram account dedicated to recipes, to diving head-first into a business by creating your own food or cooking products. Some even hit the road with a food truck business.

According to Google, 59% of 25 to 34 year-olds take their mobile devices into the kitchen, using resources on the internet to find and practice new recipes, so there’s definitely a market of do-it-yourself chefs looking for content (as well as products) you can create to serve them.

For inspiration, check out:

  • Try the World, which offers a subscription box of recipes and ingredients from a new corner of the world every month
  • Bees Knees Honey, which created and sold their own condiment.
  • How to Start an Online Food Business (guide)