THE BUSINESS EDITION NO.3 - WHEN TO START FREELANCING?

Tuesday, 16 May 2017







PREPARATIONS

Before starting out your career in the creative industry you should be well prepared. Prepared in the sense of having some money saved because it will take some time until your career kicks off  and clients appear. You’ll also need your tools for your chosen line of work. Have the right mind set when starting out is also very important because you’ll need to believe in yourself to stay motivated and focused, even in times when business is slow.

Now let's talk about money, money of course is important as well. You'll have to be able to pay your bills and rent ect: I suggest saving what you’ll need for tools and getting a part time job to allow you to make a few pounds to get by.

Let's get to the third point, tools. Whatever your niche is you probably need certain things in order to do your job. In my case it is illustration and visual art, so my tools are a laptop with various drawing programs. I also own paint, ink, a variation of black and white posca pens and mixed media paper and canvases. Your portfolio/website is one of the biggest tools you’ll have, as you’ll need to be visible online when starting your creative career. Having an online presence is very important, this ensures anyone and everyone can find you and your work. It also allows you to have a professional look for your website making you more approachable.  Bare all these points in mind when getting started.

FREELANCING 

When being a freelance artist, you’ll have to think about the services you’d like to offer. IE: Commissions.  The good thing about being self-employed is you can change the services you offer if one doesn’t work as well as another or you discover is different style you’d rather do. Being self-employed allows you to be your own boss, meaning you can call all the shots.

In my case as a visual artist and illustrator I’m open for commissions for brands or galleries. My work is available to buy as prints on etsy.  At the moment I like to create various art pieces to have them displayed in galleries and make some money via selling prints online.

It’s important you know what direction you’d like to go in as an artist before making any decisions like quitting your day job. Becoming an artist where you sell work for thousands in galleries and art auctions is near impossible, although you can combine the two by getting as many exhibitions as you can and then build a fan base and sell prints and/or various other merchandise.  Being freelance is a different creative route from this, in which you as the artists offer various services to brands or other clients, this is a easier way to make money once you get your work out there as your services will appeal to all types of people and businesses.

I highly recommend you sit down and make a small business plan and add up all the costs. Figure out if or what tools you’ll need and how much they’ll cost you. Then move on to getting a domain for your online portfolio. Once you have a clear vision of what you are doing and what services you’ll be offering, you’re ready to get started. 

/ZOE-EMMA

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