Pros and Cons of Freelancing: A Passion or a Profession?

Posted in Freelance, Tips, Web Design • Posted on 13 Comments

First of all we need to know what a freelancer is and what “freelancing” means? A freelancer is usually a self-employed person who works as a web designer, developer, content writer or even a blogger. More precisely, he contracts a small/medium (rarely large) task from various clients and receives money when the work is done. This means that, as a freelancer you can work at home while staying in your bed, anytime and keeping your own schedule.

Most of my friends, as do most people, are of the opinion that freelancing is the common, easiest choice of the lazy. “Call me when you have some money and then say you have a job…” is the most common expression I’ve heard in my career as a freelancer.
As a freelancer, you need one or more clients, the work should be perfect to impress future clients, you work on your schedule but the task you have has a deadline, which in most cases is yesterday. In conclusion freelancing is a job, a serious way of making money, but you are the boss and you work according to your own schedule.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of being a freelancer.

Pros:

  • Work at Home
  • Organizing your own schedule
  • A lot of opportunities on the web
  • You can’t be fired or laid off anymore

Cons:

  • You will become “tired and bored” of your home
  • Your schedule is never the same with the clients deadline
  • Clients can always choose another freelancer
  • No tasks is equivalent to no money

Want to Become a Freelancer? Necessary Steps:

1. Portfolio

From where I stand, freelancing implies 99% ambition + work (or maybe work + ambition) and 1% talent (I’ve learned it from Thomas Edison). Working as a freelancer involves being a professional in a particular domain (no matter which one) and the ability to work hard. To my shame, I do not have a whole lot of experience, but in my short career I’ve worked really long hours daily. One way to learn is using tutorials, but nothing is possible without conscientious work and a lot of time spent in front of your computer as to become competitive.
All your work (which will be called “portfolio” from now on) should be good and eye-catching to entice possible customers. Taking all these things into consideration, what’s required: a personal site, blog or any promo & ads and an impressive portfolio. This is such an important aspect because it represents you, it shows all your real abilities. Many freelancers can say that they make a new YouTube like project faster and better, but their portfolio can let potential customers know if this it is true or not (if he/she has worked on similar or more difficult projects than the one the clients wants, that should mean that the freelancer is able to do the job). In my personal opinion a portfolio is like a TV commercial: it can either be a launching ramp or just your ordinary unappealing add.

Below are some awesome portfolios to inspire you.

1- Branded07 Portfolio

2- Clear Media Portfolio

3- Jamison Banham’s Portfolio

4- Bain Bridge Studios Portfolio

5- Ploc Media Portfolio


What should I do, until reaching the highest level? (Suppose hard work…)

2. How to be the best!

I am afraid to say that the answer is still work, but not unproductive one. Each time you give the best in your work, try to forward it or ask people what do they think about your work, and if they like it, post it on a website in the field you work. Anyway a pro in domain has a different eye as your friends which in most cases are uninterested in what you have done. To know where you are and to know your true abilities try showing your work on the www. There are a lot of ways to publish your work. In the majority of these places somebody (who is a pro or maybe master) will leave you a comment probably like these:”Nicely done”, “Good work”, “You should try again”, “What is that?”. In case you are a logo designer, then Logopond is the best place (my opinion) where you can post your logos. Here are some other sites where you are advised by the best logo designers in the world:

1- Brand Bucket

2- Logospire

3- Logofury

4- Logofaves

5- Creattica

6- Logomoose


I have also found a few which offer important suggestions for developers on the web:

1- Codebetter

2- Codemonkeyism

3- Scott Hanselman

4- Web-development-blog

5- Leigeber


Great sources for web designers:

1- Smashingmagazine

2- Vandelaydesign

3- Idesignstudios

4- Webdesign-tutorials


3.How to make money?
As I said previously, you “don’t work in vain”. Even if you are a beginner, try to compete with the best to achieve hard standards because World Wide Web (WWW) is a market for freelancers, an important and an exponentially growing one. Below are some places where you can find jobs as a freelancer:

1- Rent-a-coder


On this website, prices are low even though www.rent-a-coder.com is a sounding name. “RAC” is the best opportunity to gain experience because there are many projects from various domains such as logo design, web design, content writing, development, translating, but also MATLAB and Excel algorithms. What you have to know is that getting the first project, may be difficult as you have no feed-back, which is a really important criteria for any customer. Another advantage here is that you can bid as much as you want.

2- 99designs


www.99designs.com is intended only for designers, but this is where the crème of logo & web design. Prices start from 150 $ (the cheapest product ever met here) to 350 $(a web page design is 300-350$ or more and the average logo 200-300$) which means a perfect income for beginners because there is no need to have a portfolio or previous work. You simply submit a “.jpeg” picture of your design and the contest arbiter gives you ratings staring from 1 to 5. After many failed projects on what will be a very important day of your life you will win a project; then you send the *.psd/*.ai format to the client and your account will be “full” of money.

3- Elance


In order to work on this website, it is required to pass an easy exam which consists in few questions about how to pay a freelancer, to receive money or any other frequent problems. You can also post your portfolio, without forgetting that experience and feed-back are as important as I said before.
Surely you can find on the Internet other very good places where to find jobs as a freelancer, I selected only three which I tried personally. I am working on a list of all the online marketplaces for freelancers, and I hope to post it soon.
In conclusion, nothing is possible if you don’t put all your will behind your work and that’s why I have a precious piece of advice: go to work and do your best!

22 Written Articles

13 Comments Best Comments First
  • BBL

    Saturday, April 3rd, 2010 23:36

    1

    Amazing article

    Thanks

    0
  • Oleg

    Wednesday, April 7th, 2010 18:19

    5

    Hi!
    I’m beginner ukrainian freelancer. This information is very importatn for me. Thanks.

    0
  • Nick Combs

    Tuesday, April 6th, 2010 17:26

    4

    Great article! This is excellent advice and great reading, as well as writing! good work!

    0
  • Jitendra Kumar

    Sunday, April 4th, 2010 11:15

    2

    Good information Daniel!
    It would be nice if you could put some light on how to get your first freelancing client..

    0
    • Daniel Pintilie

      Thursday, April 8th, 2010 21:19

      6

      Thanks for response.Keep in touch with us, an future article will clarify your demand.

      0
  • krike

    Sunday, April 4th, 2010 11:22

    3

    Nice article, but the contra’s are not really the same for everyone

    *You will become “tired and bored” of your home
    Being freelancer doesn’t mean you have to stay at home 24/7, the best part about freelance is to schedule when you work and when you go out doing some sport or anything else. If you are good at what you are doing and you have a good schedule you can organize more free time.

    * Clients can always choose another freelancer
    yes that’s through but it’s your job to make sure they don’t choose other freelancers by creating a unique portfolio, having unique relationship with your clients, etc…

    * No tasks is equivalent to no money
    I’m not sure I understand what you mean? if you don’t do anything you don’t earn money? well that’s obvious I think :D

    I think that if you really want to be the best and you are not the type of person to go from 8 am till 6pm working in a company, following other rules, etc… then freelance live is for you. Of course being a freelancer means you got to work harder. I’m still a student but would love to be a freelance web designer/developer and now I’m trying to find tools and ways to automatize certain task or how to do things the right way without losing time.

    I thought I would share my point of view about being a freelancer

    0
    • Daniel Pintilie

      Thursday, April 8th, 2010 21:29

      7

      Thanks for comment krike.Regarding your opinion about freelancers: everything depend on your own personality. I can’t say that my opinion is better than yours or your is better than me. I wrote the article based on the opinion of the majority of freelancers;you present only your point.Anyway I really appreciate your comment.Good luck!

      0
  • Daniel Pintilie

    Thursday, April 8th, 2010 21:35

    8

    My opinion: try all the sites with jobs for freelancers;then you should apply all the tasks you believe that is for you. After some time a client will became interested about your services and that is the first job.There is no recipe of success unfortunately.Be patient and good luck!

    0
  • Duncan

    Thursday, June 30th, 2011 02:51

    13

    Good day! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after checking through some of the post I realized it’s new to me. Nonetheless, I’m definitely glad I found it and I’ll be book-marking and checking back frequently!

    0
  • Jenny

    Monday, April 4th, 2011 17:11

    12

    Awesome collection.
    Work at home is a big pro for me.
    Thanks.

    0
  • Lily

    Monday, July 26th, 2010 14:35

    11

    Hi,
    Good article and very helpful to all who want to work as a freelancer. Through this article many from us get well information about freelancer work. Also they will mentally prepare for it and also could find the different ways of solutions.
    Thanks for sharing… :)

    0
  • SShah

    Tuesday, April 20th, 2010 07:48

    9

    Nice sharing, Daniel. I believe that in any endeavor, there must be that ‘passion’ to do something in order to achieve something, or you’ll be someplace else. Many have made the mistake of thinking that freelancing is a lazy man’s job, an easy way out, or an instant get-rich program. These are those who are likely to meet failure straight in the face. Freelancing should be something you love doing, which becomes your professional career.. that doesn’t feel like work at all. Have fun!

    0
  • Jefferson Faudan

    Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 19:25

    10

    i have been working as a freelancer for 3 long years now… and seriously, i work more than 8 hours in a day compared to that when i used to be in the corporate arena… but why?

    1. i love what i do
    2. the money you make is better compared to your 9-5 job that no matter what input and ingenuity you do won’t be monetized nor be credited
    3. i get to choose who i want to work with

    0
  • Duncan

    Thursday, June 30th, 2011 02:51

    13

    Good day! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after checking through some of the post I realized it’s new to me. Nonetheless, I’m definitely glad I found it and I’ll be book-marking and checking back frequently!

    0
  • Jenny

    Monday, April 4th, 2011 17:11

    12

    Awesome collection.
    Work at home is a big pro for me.
    Thanks.

    0
  • Lily

    Monday, July 26th, 2010 14:35

    11

    Hi,
    Good article and very helpful to all who want to work as a freelancer. Through this article many from us get well information about freelancer work. Also they will mentally prepare for it and also could find the different ways of solutions.
    Thanks for sharing… :)

    0
  • Jefferson Faudan

    Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 19:25

    10

    i have been working as a freelancer for 3 long years now… and seriously, i work more than 8 hours in a day compared to that when i used to be in the corporate arena… but why?

    1. i love what i do
    2. the money you make is better compared to your 9-5 job that no matter what input and ingenuity you do won’t be monetized nor be credited
    3. i get to choose who i want to work with

    0
  • SShah

    Tuesday, April 20th, 2010 07:48

    9

    Nice sharing, Daniel. I believe that in any endeavor, there must be that ‘passion’ to do something in order to achieve something, or you’ll be someplace else. Many have made the mistake of thinking that freelancing is a lazy man’s job, an easy way out, or an instant get-rich program. These are those who are likely to meet failure straight in the face. Freelancing should be something you love doing, which becomes your professional career.. that doesn’t feel like work at all. Have fun!

    0
  • Daniel Pintilie

    Thursday, April 8th, 2010 21:35

    8

    My opinion: try all the sites with jobs for freelancers;then you should apply all the tasks you believe that is for you. After some time a client will became interested about your services and that is the first job.There is no recipe of success unfortunately.Be patient and good luck!

    0
  • Oleg

    Wednesday, April 7th, 2010 18:19

    5

    Hi!
    I’m beginner ukrainian freelancer. This information is very importatn for me. Thanks.

    0
  • Nick Combs

    Tuesday, April 6th, 2010 17:26

    4

    Great article! This is excellent advice and great reading, as well as writing! good work!

    0
  • krike

    Sunday, April 4th, 2010 11:22

    3

    Nice article, but the contra’s are not really the same for everyone

    *You will become “tired and bored” of your home
    Being freelancer doesn’t mean you have to stay at home 24/7, the best part about freelance is to schedule when you work and when you go out doing some sport or anything else. If you are good at what you are doing and you have a good schedule you can organize more free time.

    * Clients can always choose another freelancer
    yes that’s through but it’s your job to make sure they don’t choose other freelancers by creating a unique portfolio, having unique relationship with your clients, etc…

    * No tasks is equivalent to no money
    I’m not sure I understand what you mean? if you don’t do anything you don’t earn money? well that’s obvious I think :D

    I think that if you really want to be the best and you are not the type of person to go from 8 am till 6pm working in a company, following other rules, etc… then freelance live is for you. Of course being a freelancer means you got to work harder. I’m still a student but would love to be a freelance web designer/developer and now I’m trying to find tools and ways to automatize certain task or how to do things the right way without losing time.

    I thought I would share my point of view about being a freelancer

    0
    • Daniel Pintilie

      Thursday, April 8th, 2010 21:29

      7

      Thanks for comment krike.Regarding your opinion about freelancers: everything depend on your own personality. I can’t say that my opinion is better than yours or your is better than me. I wrote the article based on the opinion of the majority of freelancers;you present only your point.Anyway I really appreciate your comment.Good luck!

      0
  • Jitendra Kumar

    Sunday, April 4th, 2010 11:15

    2

    Good information Daniel!
    It would be nice if you could put some light on how to get your first freelancing client..

    0
    • Daniel Pintilie

      Thursday, April 8th, 2010 21:19

      6

      Thanks for response.Keep in touch with us, an future article will clarify your demand.

      0
  • BBL

    Saturday, April 3rd, 2010 23:36

    1

    Amazing article

    Thanks

    0

Comments are closed.

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