Meet Wendy: A freelance creative designer in Canada.
FREELANCING: What attracts me most is the word FREE. To me it means freedom: freedom of thought, freedom of actions, free hours in the day when needed, free to express, free to bitch, free to be the best for my clients. It does not mean I work for free! As a creative designer, I have been doing freelance marketing and graphic design for seventeen years. I’m a senior now and I get more creative every day. I love the work and the work loves me.
Do I work in my jammies? Sometimes, but not often. On a cold, dreary day, it’s like comfort food. But even though I only walk a few steps to work each day, office attire is important. It can make a difference in one’s professional attitude. It’s like smiling on the phone. No one can see it, but they know you’re smiling!
No doubt being your own boss is a big responsibility, but decision making is liberating. One of the benefits (and delights) for me is the diverse client base I have. And because I provide exceptional service, plus my ace in the hole, my slogan (“never knowingly off duty”) the bulk of my business is referrals. That creates an unknown element to the next new client and project. It’s exciting and a great deal of fun. However, a downside of freelancing can also be the unknown: never knowing when the next project might be.
Since my work is graphic design, being a creative designer is all encompassing. It is brain draining and exhausting. Attracting new clients and bringing in new business is also a full time job. It is always a balancing act. When you offer creative services, the majority of your clients (the ones paying the bills) want you to drive their business. Increase sales, increase customer base, increase brand visibility. We creative types like as much freedom as we can get to design a unique campaign that will deliver for the client. Business marketing and clever creative requires synergy and that brings us to understanding the client’s needs. It’s called ‘doing your homework’ or in the professional world, due diligence. If you are serious about freelancing providing your income, this is a critical element.
The really fun side of my freelancing is creating. I’m obsessed with design (and fonts and colours). I research the latest trends, carefully observe what client wants and needs and then let my creative designer mind do the work!
Thank you Workhoppers for giving us “Freelancers” the opportunity to express ourselves! Check out my profile.
Written by: Wendy Ross
Slogan: ‘never knowingly off duty’
30 years of corporate marketing and communications
17 years of freelance graphic design and marketing
When do I think I will retire: never
Best personal traits: honest, forthright, thoughtful, trustworthy, interesting, great story teller
Best business traits: honest, punctual, researcher, intuitive, creative, service oriented, entrepreneurial