Much like annual cicadas, art college seniors will be unearthing themselves in droves during the early summer. This article, however, is NOT for them. It is for all the juniors out there who are finishing their studies among empty classrooms and celebrating peers. Let’s discuss what can give you the best head start for next year, when the real fun begins.
Visibility is a key aspect of design freelancing, and social media keeps your work highly visible while boosting your client outreach. Many new designers make the ultimate mistake of being timid and/or thinking their work is “not good enough,” but the reality is that keeping a schedule is critical. If you are working on a piece that will take longer than a week, take some photos of the progress stages. People are more interested in the journey than the destination.
Striking a balance between having a ton of channels and producing quality work is the goal. Instagram, Pinterest, Behance, Dribbble, Twitter, and Facebook are all excellent platforms for artists to have their work seen or heard, but people will notice if you spread yourself thin. Unless you are a massive, multi-billion-dollar company, a few of these will do. If you are a massive, multi-billion-dollar company this article is not for you anyway, so you might as well refresh your drink.
Whichever channels you choose, present a consistent brand to make it easily recognizable. My brand image was all over the place when the Devilish Rogue Project went live in 2014, but solidifying it helped my customers identify my “official” channels online and increased turnover. For individual designers, all that this means is having a consistent logo, font choice, or imagery over all platforms. After all, you guys are designers!
Finally, I recommend that all new designers start out with the bare minimum of an Instagram and Behance account. Artists have incredible presence on Instagram, which is an image-based sharing system, and Behance gives new artists a cheap and beautiful way to present their artwork. As an added bonus, Adobe provides a portfolio site along with an Adobe account, which many designers have anyway.
Thank you for taking the time to stop by, and I hope this small write-up will be of use. Please join me next time when we examine more tips for aspiring freelancers.