How to Become a Freelance Designer
If you’re creative, self-motivated, and have a knack for design, you can become a freelance designer!
Choose your design focus
If you want to start earning income off your design skills, you’ll need to get creative! Freelance design is all about finding your niche and building your portfolio. Start by choosing the types of design services you want to offer. This can be logo design, brand creation, website imagery, or other specialty work. If you’ve worked on previous design projects, build your portfolio to send to prospective clients. New designers should create project examples focused on the types of work they plan to offer.
Build Your Workspace
Setup your workspace and business needs
As a freelance designer, you’ll need a space to create a desk, office, or even a local coffee shop. You’ll also need design tools such as a sketchpad, computer, and software, and business management tools.
Many designers utilize programs like Sketch, Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop & InDesign. For nitty-gritty business needs, we recommend Freework, an easy-to-use app with time-tracking, invoicing, and client organization tools. Freework is perfect for all types of freelance careers! Freelance Designer Philipp uses Freework to manage his daily work. Check out his story:
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Research your pricing strategy
Set your project prices according to your skill and experience level. Many designers charge at an hourly rate for smaller projects and charge at a flat rate for larger projects. Remember that design work can be tedious and takes time! Consider things like project size and design requirements before sharing your price list with your first client.
Build your client base & design business
Design work is needed by virtually every business and organization. If a brand or company uses a logo, website, or other marketing materials, it’s likely they need design services, too! Start by reaching out to friends, family, and local businesses who may be in need of design work. Offer your experience, portfolio, and ways you can make their brand pop.
Having trouble finding your first client? Freelance websites advertise thousands of design jobs for people just like you! Check out Upwork, Fiverr, or Freelancer to get started.
Get creative and get to work!
Now that you have your first client, it’s time to start designing! Be sure to deliver all projects on time and within the agreed upon hours or rate. Always communicate with your client if anything changes such as the amount of time needed for a project or the total cost.
Create invoices and get paid
Finished with your creative work? it’s time to get paid! Calculate your hours worked or use a flat rate to create an invoice for each freelance design project or client.
Freework makes this step easy with time tracking and invoice tools. Setup your client profiles, input your design rates, and use the time tracking tool to quickly generate your invoices. Simply tap the send button to submit invoices to all of your clients. The Freework app makes it easy to get paid to do what you love!