How Freelance Graphic Designers Can Make Downtime Productive

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Graphic design is a robust industry that is growing in importance in the digital age. Both businesses and individuals want to invest in their brands online, and visual style is at the heart of their concerns.

Time spent browsing all the internet has to offer is much more likely to be captured by eye-catching visuals than even the most carefully targeted copy.

For creative professionals who excel at graphic design and know how to present their services well, there is a lot of money to be made. As you might expect, however, supply has grown to meet demand, and there may be more graphic designers than ever before, especially freelancers.

Some graphic designers have excellent reputations and can charge large sums. Others are just starting out and looking to prove themselves. The waters are blurred even more by part-time workers: people who have basic graphic design skills and occasionally hope to supplement their sources of income.

Even if you’re the best of the best when it comes to graphic design, the wide variety of professionals (and the speed at which visual design trends come and go) will ensure you have downtime on occasion. You could Choose that downtime on occasion, of course, not particularly wanting to work hard all the weather.

But whether it’s inevitable or optional, it’s not a good idea to let downtime become wasted time. It can still be productive.

Productive ways to get more value from downtime

To help you get more value from your downtime, we’re going to look at four ways to use it more productively. Let’s come to them:

Learn to use new tools

Perhaps the most useful thing for a graphic designer to do during downtime is to work on their skills. The more successful they are at what they do, the more they can increase their rates and the more easily they will find a job in the future.

Someone who works primarily with Adobe tools like Photoshop and Illustrator might benefit from the Coral suite, for example. There is a lot of overlap, of course, but you might find CorelDRAW better for some things.

Plus, sometimes we all fall for repetitive patterns, and graphic designers are no different. It’s easy to find a way to achieve a particular effect – even if it’s slapped a bit – and keep using it in perpetuity.

Downtime can be used to try new methods, which may prove to be more efficient and / or more efficient, particularly if they involve macros.

Produce educational courses to sell

When you have skills in demand, providing them for a fee isn’t the only way to monetize them. You can also benefit from teaching others to do what you are doing.

Since it’s not specific actions that make you an expert (it’s the totality of your expertise, creativity, and work ethic), you can show people how to do things like cut people off or create compelling rain effects without disclosing anything that could threaten your career opportunities.

Helpfully, there are various services that make it easy to distribute any course material you may create. I especially suggest checking some Teachable reviews (the one from LearningRevolution.net being particularly enlightening) to see how it works and get an idea if it might match your goals.

The bulk of the job, however, will be producing material – whether it’s video tutorials, written guides, or even podcasts – that can grab attention.

Network in the communities concerned

It is not always the most qualified candidate who gets the high-value graphic design job. Trust is another essential element, especially on a key project. It may be less important to get a fantastic result than to get a satisfactory result (i.e. tick all the boxes). And it’s hard to trust someone you don’t know. This is why networking will always be important.

After you finish a job, stay in touch with your customers. Look for opportunities to attend social events with them.

Plus, while graphic designers who focus solely on their abilities can turn out to be great, they should always find the time to engage with other graphic designers. More than ever, it can be done online. Sites like Reddit and Dribble host rich conversations on everything from negotiating with clients to finding a niche:

By networking and participating in graphic design communities, you can glean valuable information from your professional colleagues and use your different styles for mutual benefit by agreeing to recommend them for certain jobs that are best suited to them if they do the same. thing for you.

Focus on financial planning

Finally, every freelance writer of all types should know how to manage their finances. It’s hard to deal with irregular income, after all – especially for millennials. What if vital industries collapse for some reason and the demand for graphic design suddenly becomes flat? You must be able to endure difficult times without reaching the point of total disaster.

Being the greatest educational resource humanity has ever assembled, the online world is teeming with guides to financial management, many of which are aimed at freelancers. mint, for example, has some great tips to get you started.

Look for finances Planning online and offline resources, learn all you can about good financial management, and generally commit to building up your savings and creating a wise spending plan for irregular income.

If you have good financial management and a good spending plan in place, you can thrive as a freelance writer with stable finances.

However, you should not put all your downtime to productivity. You need to find time to relax and rejuvenate, but allow a good deal of the downtime to help you further your career.

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