Although many Bohemians had a budget
provided to them by their parents or guardians, others had to
support themselves, and many chose to follow a career in spite
of their financial circumstances. To many outsiders, Bohemians
were defined by their work - any painter, writer, or student
was automatically assumed to life a Bohemian life.
There were three main occupations held
- Painters - The most popular image of the Bohemian shows
him at an easel, as in the engraving at right by George du Maurier.
Indeed, many did take up the brush to pay the rent.
- Writers - Others followed a literary path, selling their
works to magazines or attempting to write great novels. Because
it was extremely difficult to make a living by writing poetry
or fiction, many wrote
- Students - Not a way to make money, but a vocation that
allowed for plenty of free time to spend at cafes. Those who
were not studying the liberal arts or a profession such as law
or medicine attended Arts Academies
to become better painters.