What can you expect from living as a freelance designer
I’m a freelance designer and the one thing that keeps me coming back are the clients I work with. For example I used to work in retail and I would be in a team of maybe 7 or 8 and if I didn’t get on with my work colleagues then I couldn’t show that, I’d have to keep it bottled in and that’s something that’s very frustrating… imagine dating a guy/girl and you hate them with a passion but have no choice but to go out with them? You wouldn’t do it. And that’s what’s great with being a freelancer.
There’s a freedom about it and the fact that in a job you have to be restrained to speaking to the same people who you work with day in day out. Now I meet a whole range of people from all over the world, whether that’s in person or through a computer, I am broadening my horizons and possibilities in the future without really realising it. I love to experience different parts of the world and there’s so many different and wonderful people with differing nationalities that being a freelancer gives me that opportunity to reach out and help them with jobs they need doing.
The advantages of a freelance life
In jobs in the past where you’re confined to being in at a certain time and leaving at a certain time but being a freelance designer enables me to express my work when I want and how I want, without having the restraints of people looking over my shoulder to make sure I’m doing alright; this means I can make sure my client is 100% happy with what I’m doing and I can focus on their individual needs and timeframes. It’s that individuality that can shine through being a freelancer and I can’t express enough how good it feels to be doing something you enjoy but also to have a happy client at the end who really values your time and effort and the hard work you’ve put into producing their work; this is not something that working for big companies you’ll hear that often, if at all.
Another big plus is you generally get to work at home and can have lay ins. I remember 4 or so years ago I was working on boxing day in the sales and that means an early start. I mean very early. 4am starts are now a thing of the past and now they’re in the past the pressure has gone with them. We all feel pressure and for me being a freelance designer eliminates a certain pressure which I couldn’t deal. This is what is great with being a freelancer; you can work at any time of the day and you can have as many toilet breaks and drink breaks as necessary! However, if you love working in the early hours then that’s fine also so being a freelancer has so many positives and you may be asking where are the negatives?
One of the biggest negatives personally is you’re not always guaranteed work which can be frightening for some people. It’s daunting not having set hours and a payment plan that’s weekly or monthly, while you can work at any hours which is a big positive it’s also a big negative but only if you allow it to be. To be honest, you can get away with being lazy quite a lot in a normal day to day job especially in a big retail company but it’s different being a freelance designer. The more effort a freelancer puts in to finding work and getting clients, the more chance they have with getting continuous work and the money can be anything you want it to be. This is where if you don’t put the effort in then you could become moneyless very quickly. Having said that, being a freelance designer means you do the stuff you enjoy doing… why wouldn’t someone who enjoys what they do for a living want to put the effort in?
At the moment being a freelance designer enables me to try out different things and see what I enjoy doing the most. I’ve designed websites for clients and I’ve also designed logos for other clients along with writing articles which I all enjoy doing! I have the qualifications and the experience to be able to be a freelance designer and live quite comfortably which is a relief and puts my mind at ease. It’s something that I’m sure everyone wants to do; I mean to be you’re own boss? You’d be crazy not to! If anyone asks me if they should become a freelancer, my answer would categorically be yes, but make sure you put the effort in!