Starting your Freelance career can be a daunting task. When I first ventured out on my own, there were many questions weighing on my mind…
- Where will I find work?
- How much do I charge for my skills?
- How will I afford to feed my family upon start up?
- How do I start?
These are just several of the many questions that came to mind when starting my home studio. I will walk you through how to deal with these questions and more throughout the remainder of this article.
Becoming a Freelance Graphic Designer
When I first toyed with the idea of becoming a Freelance Designer, I relished the idea of being my own boss, working my own schedule and taking on a workload that I was comfortable with… but I am a realist! I am well-aware that the Design field is highly competitive, and filled with skilled designers all competing for the same gigs. Don’t let this scare you away!
I have learned many things throughout the process… and I want to pass along a few golden nuggets of knowledge to you…
Finding projects can at first seem like a monumental task. Clients like a Freelancer who is on top of their game… always willing to make time for them and willing get to know their brand inside and out. Not only do you have to learn their favorite colors and flavors, but you have to learn their market as well. If your client is a furniture store, learn some furniture industry buzzwords. Research their competitors, and find out what they are doing to make their businesses work. This will help you devise a proper plan on how to attack the project.
Do not give your clients the runaround. Always be a straight-shooter! If you are behind on their project, let them know and assure them that you will complete the project as promised. Insure them that you are willing to put in the extra hours to get their project finished on time. DO NOT LIE TO YOUR CLIENTS!
Use a Project Finding Service
There are many websites out there allowing Freelancers to bid on client projects. More often than not, the client ends up NOT hiring the Freelancer from the website, because they found a local Designer who was available and willing to have face-to-face meeting. This is were the EC Model & Talent Agency Network at ectalentagency.com can be a lifesaver. They allow you to create a profile based on your location that clients are able to search for by skills, location and even proximity. If your skills are a clear-cut above the rest, chances are that remote clients will find you for their projects as well. On top of this, EC Model & Talent Agency Network also has an extensive Job Board that allows you to apply for any kind of Design project. From full-time to contract jobs, they offer it ALL!
Nothing helps a Freelancer out more than other Freelancers. Using Peer Reviews allows you to communicate with other Designers, and gives you a chance to talk about your project. Show them your work and ask for their honest opinion. Remember… YOU HAVE TO BE OPEN TO THEIR IDEAS! Sometimes you have to roll with the punches. As a Graphic Designer, you can not get defensive about your designs. Be open to constructive criticism.
EC Model & Talent Agency Network is a great way to meet, communicate and learn from other Freelancers. It is more than a job finding website like most others… It is a social Network for all you creatives out there. It gives you a chance to meet other peers, use Peer Reviews, join Peer Groups, participate in Forums and make Friends and Colleagues. It truly is a Freelancer’s Best Friend! 🙂
At the end of the day, using these tips has helped me and many other Freelancers become successful in their fields. It may seem like a huge mountain to climb, but in reality it is quite simple. Take the leap of faith, utilize the abundant tools out there and enjoy the freedom of becoming your own boss!