Finally Freelancing


I done a spot of freelancing a year or so back which was mostly based in Flyers and posters for nightclub events in glasgow. I gave this up to return to college but that didn't quite go as planned due to personal things going on at the time and I've never really got back into it.

Last year I bought my domain and hosting and have a shell of a website which I have been putting off doing. Problem being, I've severely lacked in confidence the last few months and of course, every portfolio needs work to add to it!

Now that we've come into a new year I've took a completely different look on things, and have put alot more faith in myself and the things I can do. So I finally (after all this time!) feel like I could make the move I need to get back into things. I've decided 2009 IS my year to change things and I know if I don't do this, I never will, and design is all I've ever been interested in.

What I need though are a few pointers in how to get my name out there.

I have very little "work" that has been done for clients as I lost alot of my stuff when my computer died and I stupidly didn't back it all up.:icon_mad: However for the last few months I've spent alot of time creating a few personal pieces which I feel would work well in my portfolio, is this a common thing to do?

I know the first move to make would be to get my website up and running.

I do lack in qualifications (I have none in this field other than my GCSE art, ha) but I'm a firm believer that you can show what you're capable of in such an industry by the work you produce.

I feel somewhat lost in this whole thing. I want to do as much as I can to get myself out there, but worry that I may not be "trusted" as such because I don't have a degree in design. I also wonder if, with the current economic business going on, now is the right time to start?

Having spent the last 4 years raising my daughter confidence is also a big issue, I have dedicated the majority of my time to her so it's slightly daunting to try and get into such a new, and quite frankly, competitive industry.

I just wondered if anyone else had any tips, or any help and ideas that they could pass on to help me start off? I'd appreciate anything of advice that any of you could offer.:icon_smile:
I have yet to have a client ask me what my qualifications are before asking me to do a job. It all comes down to the quality of your work and testimonials (if you have some).

Getting your website up with at least samples of your personal pieces will be a good start. I really can't talk on this count, I am dreadfully behind on getting my new website up and running and I need to get my arse into gear!

Now is probably a good time to start, especially if you can offer cheaper rates to clients who might be looking to decrease budgets.

I started off with one client 3 years ago and since then have worked for over 200 more, all of that through word of mouth and referral. I have spent nothing on advertising other than a few banners on some business forums. That will change for me this year though as I want to move up a gear.

Take it slow and steady, get a part time job to help ease the stress of bills a little.

Good luck for 2009.
Good advice there PI.

Soprano, welcome to the forums!

First of all, I echo Pixels comments regarding degree's. For design, you're judged on your work first and foremost. If you can impress the client with your portfolio and how you present yourself then you'll do well for yourself. Getting a degree in design is always helpful, mainly for learning rather then your CV (in freelance terms anyway). Of course if you're looking for employment, a degree will have more weight than freelance, but your portfolio will still be the main thing taken into account.

To get some work on board, offer out your services for free, with the requirement/option that they give you a paragraph afterwards as a testimonial. Once you've got some portfolio work done and learnt how business works, you can start charging for your work. To get started with offers click here.

Good luck, if you have any questions don't hesitate to ask, and post up some work when you've done it so we can see :).
Yea as suggested start off for free like myself - get a professional portfolio built up as well as a personal one. And as I was told, even if your not getting paid for the first few, testimonials are worth their weight in Gold.

Good luck with it mate :icon_smile:
Some good advice so far.

Some of the best designers do not have formal qualifications. Talent, reputation and experience go a lot further in the industry.

I would definitely recommend starting slowly. A part time job will ease the stress and give you some guaranteed income.

Best of luck :icon_cheers: