Here are some first-hand stories of how graphic design graduates and film graduates have become successful in the Creative industry. Digital Arts Magazine is British, so you may not have heard of the Tertiary institutions they mention!
Here is a visual summary of the findings from the Arts Council's 2010 study into artists and their careers.
You can start getting your art 'out there' at an artisans/craft market. Craft and art overlap at some of the trendier markets.
Get an idea of where your art study could take you by looking at the job descriptions in the following websites.