How to Set Up as a Freelance Illustrator

How to Set Up as a Freelance Illustrator

Freelance News Freelance Skills Freelance Tips

Ben Tallon’s illustration poster for WWE Magazine Whether you’re graduating from an illustration degree, or have a creative day job you’d prefer to ditch for a freelance life, you’re likely feeling unsure about setting out on your own. You may be wondering how you could ever make a living purely off illustration, where to begin freelancing – or if that’s even the best option for you right now. But here three leading illustrators give you advice on how to make freelancing a success. Setting up as a freelance illustrator can be a scary career move, but with the right enthusiasm, willingness to work long hours and a few contacts under your belt, you’ll be ready for just this moment. Brooklyn-based freelance illustrator Abbey Lossing – who used to work for the likes of BuzzFeed and Vice – and UK illustrator, author of Champagne and Wax Crayons and host of the Arrest All Mimics Podcast Ben Tallon explain the ins and outs of how to set up as a freelance illustrator. British freelance illustrator and animator Peter Henderson , now based in Latin America, discusses how to apply for a job at an agency (most illustrators do this first to get a stable income). Find practical advice on whether you should go freelance straight out of university or not, managing money, how to find work and create contacts, what’s important to have on your website, which social media platforms you should be advertising yourself on, how to balance illustration with another full-time job and how to mentally prepare for a freelance lifestyle. Jump down to a specific topic: Can I successfully go freelance straight out of university? How to mentally prepare for a freelance lifestyle The best way to advertise your work Juggling illustration with other full-time work Finding work and networking How much time should I be dedicating to personal work? Tips for managing money Parting advice Abbey Lossing Can I successfully go freelance straight out of university? For most people who love illustrating, being able to work on your own projects at your convenience is the dream. But people have to drop this dream pretty quickly when they can’t gather enough work, and end up working at an agency for a few years first anyway. Trust me, we’re not trying to crush your dreams – working with others first is always a good way to gain experience to put on your CV, earn a stable income and figure out if illustration is still for you, plus making some great creative-minded friends along the way to keep you sane. It doesn’t mean you can’t build a portfolio and list of contacts on the side in preparation to go freelance. “Getting a part time or full time job is a healthy thing,” says illustrator Ben Tallon. “It lifts the pressure – a major factor. Some thrive under pressure, others buckle and with income from elsewhere, we have time to play, take time to understand what we want and seek it […]

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