Acknowledging the successes and failures as part of life, Simran is a design graduate working as a freelance graphic designer. She quit her full-time job due to feeling less productive and found solace in working with various clients and projects as a freelancer.
She advocates social media platforms to get quality leads and recommends having a personal website to showcase a work portfolio. For her, there is no specific formula to pricing, it depends on the requirements of each client. She believes that planning is essential to ensure productivity and to meet deadlines.
As a freelancer, she cherishes the freedom and the respect that you get as a sole expert here. Aiming to be a well-known freelancer one day, she wants to level-up her design standards and work with big clients. We admire her outlook on continuous learning and growth in life. We wish her success in the future.
Read Simran’s interesting journey:
1. Introduce yourself to us?
Hey, I am Simran, I’ve recently started as a freelance graphic designer, currently living in Gwalior. Previously, I have worked for a couple of companies for around 4 years as a creative designer in the field of UI design, branding, custom packaging, and mostly all fields of graphic designing. I did my bachelor’s in design from Banasthali University, Jaipur.
2. Why did you choose the field of design? How did you get introduced to this field? What fascinates you the most about your career choice?
Well, to be honest, when I joined the course, I wasn’t very aware of what actually designing is. However, when I started to learn, I realized I was in the right place, learning the right thing, and it just suited me somehow. I was amazed at how the process works. The level of creativity in the ways I never thought of, and how design is so helpful in solving a problem, be it even as simple as a daily life problem.
Now, when we notice, everything around us is designed in every other way. There are so many possibilities to what one can do. Building a brand, creating a product, presenting it to the world, promoting it, marketing it, selling it, each and every aspect requires designing in it.
3. Why did you choose to freelance? When did you begin to freelance? Were you planning it, or how did it happen?
I had worked typical 9-5 hours in a job, which was nice in the beginning as I got to learn and experience a lot of things. But after some time, it got too monotonous working on the same thing every day.
I started feeling not productive enough some days, even though I was earning really well, but it still didn’t feel good and it started to feel like my brain was rusting, somehow. I quitted job after a time, got married in the meanwhile and started as a freelancer, as a new start, and started getting clients to work on interesting, new and different projects.
4. What are the most prominent techniques that you use to market yourself as a freelancer?
Social media is like everything and essential nowadays, I started a page as ‘The Tiny Pencil on Instagram & Facebook and showcased my few works and some digital illustrations. I have also created a website to showcase my portfolio for a web presence. I started sharing my projects on LinkedIn as well and I got a lot of good responses from there.
5. How do you price your services as a freelancer? Any essential points that a new freelancer should know of?
It was very hard in the beginning, to be honest. It took a great deal of time for me to understand how not every client is the same, and not every client has the same budget for a particular thing. Mostly it really depends if it’s a startup or a big company you are working for, and what is the standard of design they are looking for, then you got to state the pricing accordingly.
I am very selective in what kind of project I want to work on, as I focus more on quality over quantity, and that is what I want my client to invest in. So, mostly I propose an individual client according to needs and requirements they have, and it is different with every client.
6. What is the one major pro and/or con of freelancing, according to you?
Well, a major pro is that you are your own boss, and you get to choose what projects you want to work on. You are the sole expert here, and the other person respects you for that.
A con, I would say, is, basically financially for me, like in the job, you have an amount that you will get at the start of the month. But, in freelancing, god it’s hard to get the money in the beginning. I mean it was the case for me at least, as initially, you are not really aware of how you are going to set your pricing because you invest a lot of time in a project which is paying way too little.
7. What do you do to polish your skills as a freelancer?
Well, I believe working every day helps you learn different things, and taking up challenging projects helps a lot to upgrade your skills.
8. How do you ensure productivity? What are the critical points to keep in mind to ensure efficiency?
Planning is the key to productivity. If you can plan your work schedule properly, one can be efficient enough in meeting deadlines and keeping the flow of work smoothly. I think, if the decision to choose a project/work is in your hands, then it’s a motivation in itself.
9. Have you turned down a potential client? If yes, why?
Yes, I have a couple of times, because sometimes I didn’t have the bandwidth to take up that project. That’s a con of being a freelancer sometimes.
10. What mission and vision do you have? How do you want history to look at you?
I don’t really have long-term goals, they change anyway, always. But I wish to be well independent, financially and personally. To be able to take good care of my family and I.
Career-wise, I wish to one day be able to be a freelancer to big fat, well-known clients! I want to take my design standard to that level, to be known.
11. What would do you differently if you had to begin your career again? What would you focus on once you restart?
I don’t think I want to change anything, life has been pretty good! I love the experiences I have had, whether they were successes or breakdowns, that’s all as part of life. It is important for one to experience to be able to learn and grow.
For delivering quality work on time, having a good brief is necessary. To know more, read our blog on what an ideal brief should be like.