Regarding surveys, there's some interesting data at
<www.aauw.org/3000/fellows.html>. It's a report on members
of the American Assoc. of University Women who have received
fellowships, and how it impacted their lives. There's
information on job satisfaction, salaries, etc.
There's also a survey which was made of artists in 4 major
U.S. cities. I have the info at home and will try to
remember to post it. It says that over half of the artists
surveyed make under $7000 on their art per year. Sad
As for CA academic salaries, Britt is correct. Staff artists
and art instructors in the university and community college
systems seem to make somewhere between $33,000 and $50,000 a
year. There is a lot of competition for those jobs and
people who get them tend to keep them; they don't open up
very often. My experience (having subscribed to an academic
job notice and having applied for one such position) is that
in most cases they DON'T want a scientific illustrator.
They're more interested in a fine artist. Or a graphics
person with lots of digital skills and knowledge.
Every once in a while there's a newspaper article about the
"glass ceiling". While not focused on artists, these
articles always point out that the glass ceiling is still
there, and that women generally make less than their male
counterparts. That's by several percentage points.