Design work abroad...


shazza

shazza

Member
#1
Hi all,

I live in the UK, but want to get to a hot country for the Winter months and work as a graphic designer :) (I've been qualified for 20 years too BTW!)

Maybe it's a weird question not designed for a board like this, but does anyone have any advice on how to go about this, or companies they know of who'd need people etc?

Thanks!
Sharon
 
Paul Murray

Paul Murray

Moderator
Staff member
#2
I haven't done it myself, but I half-heartedly looked at working in Cyprus a few years back. Good grasp of English is a solid skill that you can lead with, I noticed many grammatical errors with translations.

I guess you'd just look for companies in hot countries that need an English-speaking designer for a short period during the Winter months. What's happening in that country during Winter that would require a need for extra, English-speaking designers to work in-house? If you can find a market or industry with that need, you'll have an easier time finding somewhere. I think the hard part will be finding an agency/studio that needs you for just a short period of time, but also requires you to be working in-house rather than remotely.
 
scotty

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
#3
I've looked at it before myself when I've gotten sick of the Winter months and sites like Indeed can give you an indication of what's out there by say searching "Graphic Designer, Spain (or wherever)".
Sounds a bit clunky but by searching in English plucks out the jobs that are advertised in English and often aimed at English speakers.

I guess the issue would be to find something that's essentially just seasonal which would narrow things down a lot.

Thing is.... Freelance Design is one of those jobs that is perfect for nomadic working as you can do it remotely anywhere and I know a few that have/do and there are quite a few sites and blogs about the subject.
Very few of my clients are in the UK.
Why not concentrate on building on that and then the world's your oyster.
 
shazza

shazza

Member
#4
Thanks both for your very helpful answers! I am going to look into your suggestions :)

The next question now is, how did you get your own clients? I work in London and rely on agencies to get me all my work, handy but not good if I want to work remotely!

Thank you!
 
scotty

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
#5
Initially, I got mine from stuff I've put out on the web like my folio site or Behance and the like and then more often from personal recommendation.
I also did some tut's and freebies and I got a lot of work from those at the time.
Pretty much from self promotion.

There are some pretty good articles out there about self promotion and getting clients and to be honest, most of them make the same kind of noises.

CreativeBloq is a great place to start and has tons of articles and you can search them out in the search bar.

On a side note, this thread is giving me itchy feet again.
 
scotty

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
#6
What kid of work are you doing down in London through the agencies?

It often helps having or promoting a bit of a niche getting remote clients.
 
shazza

shazza

Member
#7
Thanks so much for all this info! I have never been able to find my own clients (I probably haven't tried too hard!), but I specialise in creative PowerPoints (!). There's loads of work in it, maybe it's just as simple as contacting the companies I've worked for in the past, not sure this is bad etiquette and a bit poachy though!
 
scotty

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
#8
If there's plenty of work in it then you're off to a great start and this is a niche and nothing you couldn't do remotely.

I'd start with putting a website together to showcase what you do and you can easily direct people there and get some info about SEO.
Do contact the people and companies you've worked for in the past!

In all honesty, I don't promote myself a fraction of what I should/could but I've gained a new skill set so I've got to do the same and pull my finger out a bit. ;)
Yes, it's a bit of a slog but you can chip away at it and you'll get there.
I think there's a saying about "Build it and they will come" or something.
It may be much more reliable than finding a seasonal gig in a nice place in the sun.

It probably sound a bit daunting to build up your own freelance client base but think of it this way.

If you want to be a semi-nomadic freelancer lifestyle then if you have your own client base then you will have much more flexibility, freedom and control than if you were relying on in-house gigs.
You can go where you like not just where the work is.
Say if you wanted to visit Spain.
Most of the design jobs seem to be in Madrid so the cost of living may be higher and so on and Madrid might not be for you but you're tied to it.

A guy I know has travelled the world, through South America and (I think) is and has been for a while in Buenos Aires where the cost of living is lower and he gets more bang for his buck.

I still get tempted to go nomadic myself and I was watching the Ben Fogle programme "Lives In The Wild" last week where a couple and their two kids fitted out a bus as a motorhome and travel around NZ.

Their cash ran out so they started a blog about their travels and through advertising, they make their income that way.
Like you, lots of people are interested in this lifestyle and want to know more about how to make it happen.

Oh....and the book "4-Hour Work Week" is supposed to be good although I only made it half way through.

 
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