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Process for (creative) freelancing?

Discussion in 'Graphics & Multimedia' started by jasoncdu, Jul 6, 2015.

  1. #1
    Hey all,

    I was just wondering what kind of process you all go through when freelancing for creative services?
    SEMrush
    How do you communicate with your clients (from initial contact to finalization), how do you usually work with them throughout the entire design phase and how do you deliver your final product / collect money?

    The reason I ask is because recently I'm thinking of creating a platform to help freelancers like myself simplify the work process and I'm not too sure what kind of things you guys already use or would want to use?

    Any thoughts?

    Thanks!!
    Jason
     
    jasoncdu, Jul 6, 2015 IP
    SEMrush
  2. rickruizdana

    rickruizdana Member

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    #2
    Hi Jason, here are my two cents, hope they help you somehow.

    For my freelance work I do everything by e-mail. I get contacted by the client by e-mail, by facebook message or similar. Then, I reply them the same way. Sometimes we chat on Skype, sometimes just the mail does it. During this process I send them the price quote and more samples. Also delivery time estimates.

    Usually I ask for half the money upfront and send them the invoice for that amount. On other times, I do some milestones, and program the payments with that.
    For example, if they ask me for 6 cartoon mascots, I do one by one, and charge a milestone every 2 finished pieces.

    My working process:
    • Start with the initial sketches, getting feedback from client.
    • Round 2 of sketches, letting the client decide for a final one. Make changes if need it.
    • Do the penciled art, send for revision, and do the inked art over it if requested. (Some pieces doesn't need inks, just color)
    • Send flat colored artwork with a few variations, using different color palettes.
    • Finally, make the glossy cool colored piece and talk with the client for minor changes on the coloring.

    I deliver the final piece by mail, using dropbox or google drive, all in hi-res. Also I can sometimes send the PSD layered art if they asked me to, and paid for it.
    I want to be in constant communication with the client over the process to assure he/she can get the best artwork possible.
    The difficult points for an artist working as a freelance are to get good communication with the client and getting paid.
    For the client, is to get the art right and on time.

    Basically, what I would love to see on a freelancer platform is something that can help the client to get happy with each stage of the process so we don't have to make changes to something that was already finished or approved. I think it all has to be with good communication.


    Jason, if you have more questions or want to address anything, let me know, your idea of making a platform to help us freelancers is awesome!
    Saludos!
     
    rickruizdana, Jul 9, 2015 IP
    jasoncdu likes this.
  3. jasoncdu

    jasoncdu Active Member

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    #3
    Wow rickruizdana thanks so much for the detailed explanation . I really appreciate your feedback and suggestions!

    I was (and still am, albeit less active) graphic freelancer and was doing the same thing as you .. as in communicate via email for everything until I realized how backwards that entire process is. We are in the age where we can chat with bnb owners via airbnb, call a cab on our phones, we use slack for team communication - yet for many parts of the design process - why do we still talk to clients via email trying to explain everything we've done? Wouldn't it be a much easier experience if throughout the entire contract / freelance process, we could not only communicate, but also lock in & accept milestone payments after each stage is "completed"? As well tools that freelancers often need like file storage & sync, project management, payment and invoicing etc would all be in one place? I totally agree with you about "get clients happy at each stage of the process" because often they can change their mind on the dime (meaning more work for us haha)

    At least that's my opinion and I'm not too sure about other people on this forum. I would love to work on something like this but I'm just wondering if there are enough people out there that would benefit from something like this?

    I've built a landing page for what a potential product would look like - www.legionapp.com just to get the ball rolling .. any feedback regarding this would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!
    Jason
     
    jasoncdu, Jul 10, 2015 IP
  4. rickruizdana

    rickruizdana Member

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    #4
    Ah, amazing potential product, as you call it. It looks fantastic and gets to the point. It definitely would be useful for us as a freelancers. Keeping track of each project, (and each stage of those) is crucial. Also, an alarm timer for some tasks would be useful. Sometimes you need to pressure yourself a little to keep working and not get distracted. Also something for collaborative efforts to do teamwork may be a plus for your platform, letting freelancers to join on bigger projects.

    The platform has a lot of potencial. Other big hassle that freelancers has to overcome is precisely to get new customers. I know there is not a magic trick for this and one need to slowly build our brand, but I'm sure that I will try anything that lead me to that, or even accelerate the process.
     
    rickruizdana, Jul 13, 2015 IP
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  5. WANSEC

    WANSEC Greenhorn

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    #5
    A few guidelines I try to go by are

    -Have a solid portfolio
    -Talk to them in person as much as you can. Situation permitting.
    -Get half upfront
    -Over-deliver
    -Get done by the deadline
     
    WANSEC, Jul 14, 2015 IP
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  6. VAKTA MONDAL

    VAKTA MONDAL Banned

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    #6
    I usually try to follow these guidelines.
    Always try to communicate instantly
    Make a solid portfolio
    Always finish the work within timeline
    Keep good relationship through good work.
     
    VAKTA MONDAL, Jul 14, 2015 IP
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  7. jasoncdu

    jasoncdu Active Member

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    #7
    Thanks for the replies everyone, would you see yourself using something like www.legionapp.com to help with your process?? why or why not?

    Best
    Jason
     
    jasoncdu, Jul 15, 2015 IP
  8. mentat47

    mentat47 Greenhorn

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    #8
    To be honest, I use freelance sites like Elance and Upwork for prospecting, but once I establish a certain trust factor with them, I'll start to work with them independently. That way, I can take ownership of my clientele.
     
    mentat47, Jul 15, 2015 IP