How to Start a Career as a Freelance Graphic Designer

A freelance graphic designer is in the business of producing unique graphical arts used on various mediums like website, print media or any other form of mass media. These visual artists utilize their creative abilities to come up with a wide range of designs for materials, products and displays of their clients. Whether it is a logo for a company, design layout for a magazine, or work related to television or other interactive media, graphic designers play an important role in the type of media that is produced. If you have an aptitude for such creative design and can learn the latest computer advancements, then this career option might be the one for you.  Read the below mentioned guidelines to help you map out the path in becoming a freelance graphic designer.

Obtain the Appropriate Skills

Needless to say every artist must have creativity, talent, imagination and skill that is specific to the field chosen. In order to begin your career as a freelance graphic designer, consider the following tips:

  • Choose electives in high school that are related to art and graduate with fairly good scores.
  • Find a program that offers formal training in graphic designing.
  • You could either opt for a 4 years bachelor’s degree or 2 years course as a part time study.
  • Participate in as much events, competitions and seminars as possible related to your subject.
  • Be up-to-date on recent developments in the industry.
  • If you get an opportunity to work as an intern, do not miss it.
  • Business and advertising courses in the same sector is highly recommended for freelancers.
  • Training in art school and taking up computer graphics classes separately is also a good option.
  • Having a portfolio that displays your work is mandatory, the world of graphic design, portfolio plays a crucial role than scores.

Nature of Work

Freelance graphic designers get the opportunity to work for various sectors like publishing, advertising, retail, manufacture and wholesale. Freelancers have to invest a lot of time in advertising their own services and managing the administrative tasks on their own. Although the working hours are flexible, most often there will be a necessity to adapt to the requirements of the client. Some of the typical tasks of a freelance graphic designer are:

  • Interacting with clients to be familiar with their requirements.
  • Preparing design specifications for approval.
  • On approval, working on giving form to the designing specifications.
  • Reporting the same to the clients for approval.
  • Making changes as and when asked to.
  • Constantly coming up with ideas to advertise your service and increase your reputation.

 Salary and Advancement Opportunities

Designers who start with entry level tasks gain experience with time. Some freelance designers also turn out to be chief designers or directors for specific projects. Starting your own design studio is also a possible option after gaining extensive experience. Freelance graphic designers make more money than salaried professionals who earn around $35,000 to $65,000 per year, depending on their experience and skills. However, this depends on your talent, drive and experience.