Freelancer Focus is a regular feature, where freelance designers are invited to answer a series of questions about themselves and freelancing. This week Richard Baird (pictured left) is the freelance designer in question. If you would like to take part please read my previous post. Any designer or illustrator can also take part in Design Case Studies.
1. Your name?
2. Where are you are based (Country/Area)?
3. What type of work do you do? (design for print, web, multimedia etc)
Print and Web
4. How many years had you been working in the design industry before you went freelance?
5. How long have you been freelancing?
6. Why did you decide to go freelance?
I always wanted to have full control of a design project from concept to final artwork and knew I wouldn’t get that at a consultancy for a few years.
7. How did you market yourself (find design work/new clients) in the beginning – (online portfolio/brochure/direct mail/email/phone etc)?
I started with a website and got every free online portfolio.
8. How do you market yourself (find design work) now?
I write design articles for magazines, try to get design related quotes in news papers and word of mouth
9. How did you decide what to charge? What was the process?
By working out what I ideally wanted earn per year and divided it up into a hourly charge and added an extra couple of pounds to make up for the time I don’t have work.
10. Do you work from home/have an office/work in-house at design agencies?
I work from home but often work in-house with other design consultancies.
11. How do you organise your workload, do you work long hours?
Sometimes there isn’t work for a few days and other days I work 10 hours a day. I often work with clients and manufactures abroad so have to adjust time I am awake.
12. How much holiday do you give yourself?
13. How do you keep up to date with what is happening in the industry?
The internet, Computer Arts and Design Week magazines.
14. What blogs, magazines, podcasts etc do you subscribe to?
I don’t subscribe to any particular publication but do write my own blog.
15. How do you generate ideas/what techniques do you use to stimulate creativity?
Pencil and paper.
16. What about the business side of things, accounting, invoicing, bookkeeping, how do you manage it?
On a monthly basis I write up all of the months financial activities.
17. What is the biggest piece of advice you would give to someone starting out freelancing?
Be prepared for the lowest of lows but the highest of highs.
18. Would you ever go back to fulltime work?
Never designed as a fulltime employee but would never say no for the right price in the right company.
19. Any thing else you would like to add?
Recently featured in Design Week under business insight.