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If you are an illustrator, freelance platforms are one of the most feasible and easy ways to kickstart your freelance career.
The good thing about these websites is that besides connecting you with clients, they allow you to build a reputation and experience that will let you gain more clients and join more projects.
There are many types of freelance sites and you should evaluate each one to see which one best suits your needs. They all offer different benefits, different types of customers, and can benefit you in different ways.
But joining a freelance platform is just one of the many ways to get clients.
You can also have a portfolio website that also offers you many advantages to publicize your work and generate profits with your services.
However, on many occasions freelance platforms insert the option of creating a portfolio profile, so having these two options together in the same place makes these freelance sites the best option to reach an audience that is interested in your services.
The key to getting more customers is expanding your online presence and in this article, you will learn about all the possibilities that exist and what are the options that can best benefit you.
Top Freelance Sites for Illustrators
Every freelancer should know that job platforms are one of the most viable options for finding new clients and job opportunities.
In fact, 73% of freelancers are dedicated to looking for work on these pages.
While it is not the only way that a freelancer can find new clients, it is one of the most used options and if there are so many freelancers using these tools, it is because it gives good results.
There are many types of freelance platforms to find projects and each one offers you different advantages.
Before selecting your favorite, it is good that you take into account what your salary aspirations are, what type of payment is best for you, what is the percentage of commission that you are willing to give to the freelance platform where you work, among others.
Having an idea about these important points will make it easier to choose the freelance platforms where you want to offer your services.
FlexJobs is a freelance platform that guarantees serious job proposals with major companies that will surely leave a good mark on your resume.
Because each job offer that is published on the platform is manually reviewed to guarantee safety and quality to freelancers, to be part of this platform you must pay a monthly fee of $14.95.
It is not very common for freelance job websites to require a monthly payment, but on FlexJobs you will find offers from companies as relevant as Apple and Dell.
You will not find scams or jobs that are not what they promise; there are opportunities for people with experience or without experience and the structure in the offer listings is very simple.
Minty is a platform specifically created to connect clients with freelance illustrators.
Here, clients must complete a form with information, and in this way, the platform helps them find the illustrators that are closest to what they need and seek.
It is a platform that highly values the work of illustrators and is designed to respect and favor their work.
In fact, every time you accept a job proposal from a client, Minty will generate an employment contract to protect both parties.
Also, if you include your Minty link on your Instagram profile, customers can hire you with just one click.
99Designs is a platform that houses a large number of designers and illustrators from around the world, who compete with each other to win projects stipulated by the client and, of course, earn money.
The dynamic is as follows: if a client needs an illustration for their company, they will publish the necessary characteristics for it in 99Designs and these will be sent to the freelancers registered on the platform, who will compete among themselves to win the project.
The main idea is to become a good illustrator focused on a category since throughout your career, while you are winning projects among your competitors, you will be moving up in positions and with that your services will be better paid.
Indeed is a job metasearch engine. This means that it groups job offers from different web portals on its platform.
In this way, Indeed can offer a large number of job offers, giving you the possibility of finding a greater number of results for your professional profile and saving you a lot of time browsing between different websites.
As a job portal, it also offers its own job offers and you can also create job alerts in your email under the criteria of your searches. So you will be up to date with the latest job offers you are looking for just by opening your email.
Behance is a social / work network of people related to everything that has to do with the visual arts (photography, illustration, architecture, etc.) where each one shares their work, thus creating their online portfolio with their best work.
The key to finding a job using Behance is constantly updating your portfolio to showcase the best of your work.
Here you can not only show your finished works but also the process of creating your projects.
That way clients can see how you work and how professional you are.
This platform is an excellent space to make yourself known and connect with potential clients.
Source: Creative Market
Creative Market is a marketplace for graphic artists and is focused on graphic resources, fonts, photos, templates, WordPress themes, etc.
In the design line, this marketplace highlights its simplicity and ease of finding resources, and every week they offer 6 products for free.
These products are usually promoted by the illustrators and creators themselves, to advertise themselves.
In these free goodies, you can find everything from WordPress themes to photo packs.
If you are an illustrator and you plan to sell online, a marketplace can be a way to make yourself known quickly.
In addition, you will get a 70% commission for each sale. Creating a store is very simple since they have a very intuitive and friendly design.
Without a doubt, it is a platform where you must be present and with which you will benefit.
Here you can find attractive illustration projects and the page offers you many possibilities for your professional growth.
In Upwork, you can create your portfolio to show your work and as you carry out projects, you will earn a reputation that will make you stand out among other freelancers on the platform.
In addition, if you make sure you put together a good profile and portfolio, it is also likely that clients will be in charge of contacting you on their own instead of you approaching them.
Dribbble is an online platform that allows a user to expose their creative works on the internet and receive feedback on them.
This feedback can be in the form of a comment or “like”. Like in any other social network.
Dribbble has a different purpose than other social networks. Its goal is to create a very exclusive online community for graphic artists.
You can turn your Dribbble account into your portfolio.
After all, Dribbble is a great network of portfolios of artists from around the world. The good thing about this is that you can even get a job.
Many companies use the web to post their job vacancies or recruit new staff for their companies. Vimeo, Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook or Eventbrite are some of them.
Toptal is a fairly exclusive platform that seeks that the best freelance illustrators and developers contact clients to carry out various jobs.
Unlike other freelance markets, the Toptal team personally helps the clients to find the best freelancer they need, and since they allow so few freelancers, this guarantees jobs for all.
Toptal only allows the world’s best freelancers in their platform, so if you want to join you must go through an exigent process where they will evaluate your skills.
This is how they guarantee to the clients that here they will get the best freelancers of all. Although it is difficult to be accepted on this platform, they guarantee you payments that go far above what you will find on other platforms.
In Fiverr, freelancers make their profiles where they write the type of services they offer along with samples of their work.
Hirers are simply looking for freelancers that best suit their needs. The clients can visit the profiles of freelancers and transparently view their profiles, work samples, and reviews of previous collaborators making the decision easier.
Prices start at $5 but some enhanced services or high-quality work can be priced much higher than that.
The good thing about the millions of users on Fiverr is that there will always be someone interested in what you offer.
And when you make sales you will receive a rating that will make you level up, the more levels you go up, the more sales you can make successfully.
Source: Smashing Magazine
Smashing Magazine is a basic resource for graphic artists. This digital information product, a mix of a magazine, tutorial, newsletter, and editorial, also has a job board where you will find freelance job offers related to the illustration niche.
Smashing Magazine is a very broad community that helps illustrators find unique job opportunities with highly relevant companies in the market.
In each job offer, they specify which are the requirements that must be met and the skillset that must be had, along with a brief description of the position.
To apply, you are redirected to the website of the client that published the offer so that you can better know what they need and the company that published the vacancy.
DesignCrowd is a community design service. By joining this page you must make it clear what you specialize in so that later the platform will recommend you to clients when they are looking for someone with your specific skills.
When creating your profile, remember that the more professional data you add, the easier it will be for the client to know who you are and, if they like your work, choose you to be their illustrator.
The most positive thing about this platform is that it is focused on graphic artists, so there are a large number of job offers that you can apply to if you are an illustrator.
Envato Studio is an independent marketplace for designers, developers, and other creative talents.
It is part of the well-known Australian company Envato, focused on all kinds of services for graphic artists and web designers.
Envato Studio is totally focused on digital services, especially related to design.
Freelancers create a profile showing their work and fees, and clients can get in touch with job opportunities.
The platform charges freelancers a 30% fee upon completion of a project.
In this market, they are very demanding with their freelancers and you cannot just go and sign up.
They are the ones who choose the professionals that will work on the platform to guarantee a high quality of work.
So if you want to be admitted, you better have a good portfolio to show. In return you will get good, well-paid jobs.
Working Not Working
Working Not Working calls themselves the most innovative place to hire creative talent.
Here you can search for jobs by geographic location or skills. In this job board, you will find many job offers from recognized and important companies where you would surely like to work.
Many of these jobs are focused on graphic artists of all kinds, so if you are an illustrator there are many projects that you could carry out.
Unlike other job platforms, the vacancies posted on this page are long-term projects and not small gigs.
LinkedIn is a social network for totally professional use, in addition to having several sections or utilities that make this platform a multifunctional and very useful tool if you want to move in the professional world, position your profile, increase your network contacts, among many other things.
Having an active profile on this platform will increase your chances of being invited to a job offer.
It is necessary that in your profile you include the link to your portfolio website so that the companies that visit it can see your work.
Without a doubt, it is a social network in which you must be present if you want to boost your freelance career.
Art Wanted is an online community where you can also sell your art.
The purpose of this website is that you can learn about the work of other illustrators and that there is feedback between artists.
One of the greatest advantages of this platform is that they do not charge you a commission if you sell any work, so the % 100 of the profits go directly to your pocket.
Art Wanted also offers you statistics on the dissemination of your work on the platform, they show you how many people click or interact with it, this will help you to know which are your most popular works or which are more profitable.
CrowdSpring is a basic and excellent logo design service.
Here you must put together a portfolio so that clients can see it and decide if they want you to be part of their projects.
As you successfully land and complete jobs, your reputation on the page will grow, allowing you to level up and apply for more attractive offers.
The net earnings of each freelancer are usually high, as clients value the quality of the work and not just the budget.
Also, the platform does not charge when you process your payments, but the funds you earn will be available after thirty days.
Is It Worth Signing up to Multiple Job Platforms?
As you can see, there are many great platforms that you can choose.
Being successful on a freelance site is something that although it can happen within a few weeks, is something that undoubtedly requires effort.
Not only is it enough to sign up and fill in the basic data of your profile, but you must spend time filling each available space.
The more complete your profile is, the more trust you will generate to the clients.
There are platforms like Upwork that benefit more those users who remain active on the page and who take the time of complying with all the required information.
While filling out your entire profile can be tedious, it is all to benefit you.
The broader your online presence, the more likely you are to find customers.
However, it is not so helpful to use multiple work platforms and not give them the attention they need.
The best thing you can do is join one or two job platforms and get the most out of them.
By managing a few work platforms you will be able to pay more attention to them and update them frequently.
You can also try various platforms to see how they work and end up using the one that best suits your needs.
The important thing is that whatever website you choose, you stay active by sending job proposals and updating your profile and experiences.
How to Make Sure You Land a Project
Every time you apply for a vacancy, the most likely thing is that the platform will allow you to write a proposal or that the client will leave you some questions to answer.
Sometimes answering is not compulsory but if you want to land a job, it is best to answer the questions they ask you.
Give the information needed and write a proposal where you show your genuine interest in the project and explain why they should choose you.
For clients, it is essential to find freelancers who are interested in their projects, so if you manage to make that clear they will surely take you into account.
Knowing how to set prices for work is never an easy task. Especially for those who are just starting out.
It can be a challenge to discover the correct value of each service, especially when the client suggests something different.
However, a good freelancer is one who knows how to negotiate to reach a price that seems fair to both parties.
It is necessary to know how to explain the reasons why you are charging a certain value and to know that, depending on the situation, it is worth considering a proposal to build customer loyalty or gain more experience.
Before landing a job, make sure you can fulfill what they ask you to do, not only in terms of your skills but in terms of time.
Many people who start working on their own end up taking on multiple jobs to guarantee a higher income at the end of the month.
However, it is not always a good strategy.
It is important to pay close attention to your commitments so that you assume only those jobs that you can do with quality and within the stipulated deadline.
Most of the time, it is more profitable to take on fewer projects so that you have time to do them calmly and deliver something valuable to the client.
This way you convey a professional image and gain credibility in the market.
Another thing that will position you better than other freelancers is having courses or certifications because this will show the clients that you have the required knowledge and skills.
The more skills you have, the better valued your job will be.
The good news is that you do not need to go to university for this, but you can do it from home through one of these online platforms:
CreativeLive.com is a project that consists of offering courses related to illustration and other trades for free.
All courses are offered by professionals and there is a calendar with the courses available. Simply according to your time zone, you can see what time is the live broadcast of the course.
If you forgot to take a course or did not have time, you can pay and then the content will be available to download and so you can see it at the time you want. Anyway, many rather see it when the transmission is live.
- Recommended course: Make Things Make Money: The Business of Illustration and Lettering
Through Skillshare you will be able to learn abilities and skills via online in video format, so you can improve the knowledge you already have.
There are many courses about different topics and you surely will find extremely helpful courses related to illustration.
The difference with other platforms of this type is that Skillshare courses are not presented in individual offers nor are they accredited by the platform.
Every user with a monthly subscription can access any available educational content without any inconvenience, so this will help you to save money.
- Recommended course: Digital Illustration: Doodles to Designs
LinkedIn Learning is a paid LinkedIn educational platform and can be accessed through your LinkedIn profile.
LinkedIn Learning courses are taught through video tutorials and are added as an experience on your LinkedIn profile, which will improve your chances in the world of work.
If you have a LinkedIn Premium account you can access it directly from the menu. In the event that you have a basic or free account, you must pay to access these resources.
Once you can access LinkedIn Learning, you will be able to see all the videos you want.
You have no limits. Plus, LinkedIn adds new videos every week, and you will receive personalized course recommendations based on your current job, your skills, and what other professionals like you are learning.
- Recommended course: Essential Illustrator
Udemy is an online platform specialized in training.
The difference between most platforms that offer this type of services and Udemy is that while the other platforms provide courses created by different colleges and universities, which include exams and a final degree. Udemy is based on courses created by teachers, trainers and coaches who create their own materials and sell them through the platform.
For students, the wide variety of Udemy courses and prices, as well as the ease of access and use of the platform, offer great advantages when it comes to training in practical knowledge, whether for use in their professional or personal lives.
- Recommended courses: Adobe Illustrator CC – Advanced Training Course
Make An Effort And You Will See the Results
Freelance sites are essential in your growth as a freelance illustrator, there you can find your first clients and those who will be your most loyal clients.
You must create your work profiles and all your projects with great patience, ensuring that you provide all the necessary information to give your clients the correct idea about who you are and about your work.
Investing time in freelance work platforms will give you good rewards, so do not hesitate to use several platforms to increase your online presence and your chances of winning clients.