Do you want to make more money from your Design, Art & Multimedia services? We asked a top-earning guru and an employer who’s hired in the category to share their tips.

Here are 8 ways you can polish your profile today to attract more clients and win more jobs!

Freelancer Perspective:

Atula Siriwardane, illustrator

Atula Siriwardane specializes in illustrating comic books, storyboards and portraits. Here are his tips about how to sell freelance design, art & multimedia services.

1. Focus your services around one main type of work you enjoy.

Book illustrations were my first experience of art. As a child I was mesmerized with illustrations on the books I read, referring to them continuously as I read. I offer a number of services that are related to book illustration, such as graphic novel illustration and storyboards (basically comic books transformed for movies). The idea is that an employer who seeks one of my services may get inspired by the others I offer.

2. Create a collage of your work.

A collage of images makes a very effective profile cover. Creating a collage allows you to overlap areas to cover the less important elements while highlighting your most attractive work. When done right, a collage impresses viewers and welcomes employers to dig deeper into your portfolio.

In a collage, there must be a flow of images that doesn’t allow the viewer to stay focused on any one image. In my collage, there happens to be a main point of interest, and I create a secondary point of interest by including some colored images among the black and white.

3. Show variety in your Work Collections.

I selected work examples that show the variety of styles and techniques I use and my adaptability. The majority of my work is comic books and graphic novels. I prefer to work in black and white, but I added work in color for those employers who need one artist to use all the way up to coloring.

4. Be truthful about your abilities.

You need to be aware of the employer’s needs and be careful not to give false hopes when you cannot deliver. Don’t try to portray a larger-than-life image of yourself. But don’t sell yourself short, either. It’s best to be honest about what is and isn’t possible. If an employer is disappointed with your work, the workflow will be disrupted and you may lose inspiration or even find yourself in a dispute.

5. Take the high road in disputes.

No matter how good and truthful you are, delays, mistakes, and misunderstandings may create disputes. Try not to get disturbed even if you are the victim. Respect the fact that the employer is in as much trouble as you. The employer may feel they have lost time and even money on the project. If you deserve the blame, accept it. Explain your position, and be truthful. Resolve disputes directly with your employer while you can. If you are honest in the process, you will know that you did your best.

If things go too far wrong, cut the connection as gently as possible, and pay what is due. Though we may work as individuals, we are a team and we have a collective reputation as Guru freelancers. Do everything you can to regain the trust of the employer – if not for yourself, then for Guru freelancers as a whole.


6. Offer outstanding client support.

Sometimes, how you involve and guide an employer through the project is more important than the actual work. You should be available for open communication, and openly state your preferred methods of contact. I prefer communication through chat. It’s more time-efficient than email, and gives you more time to think and respond than you have on a phone call.

Bottom line…

In the end, we all have to face the fact that we can’t win all the time. You win some and lose some. These are just my suggestions, but experience is the best teacher.

Employer Perspective

Diego Cardenas

Diego shares what he looks for in a design, art & multimedia guru.

1. Accumulate plenty of positive feedback.

I always check a freelance designer’s feedback before hiring them. Seeing a number of detailed reviews gives me more confidence in the freelancer. Sometimes location also plays a part in my decision, as I prefer working with Filipino and Hindu freelancers.

2. Be patient with clients.

Be very patient. If you are not, you will go crazy. I’ve been on the provider side of the equation, and I know it can be extremely nerve-racking to deal with demanding clients. This is especially the case when dealing with clients who aren’t tech-savvy. These clients require that you work while educating them at the same time. Be ready to answer a client’s questions, and keep your answers concise.

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