in Misc

Living the life of a freelance artist

A freelance artist is a chameleon-like creature, who offers his/her services to people or companies in need of help or expertise. These projects may have a contract for long-term cooperation. Sometimes the freelancer deals with one-time assignments and charges per hour, a fixed-price, or in case of a writer a rate per word/page. Many different clients rent a freelancer’s services. A freelancer doesn’t work for anyone but works together with clients, who can be regulars (or agencies) on their projects.

Thinking a freelance artist’s life is like figure skating on Olympic ice is a bit naïve. Problems you may encounter while living your freelance dream life are unpredictability. Unless you work on a long project and get paid by milestones, you don’t know for sure how much you will make the next month. That’s why some writers prefer to offer their products for sale online. Working with for example the best essay writing services, like PapersOwl. This is a fine example of how a freelance essay writer can sell his original essays online. It’s hard for a freelancer to maintain self-motivation. Working within an organized platform-concept keeps the fire burning.

Even then, clients aren’t always aware of what they want and need. Patiently a freelancer must get to the core by finding out what his clients can’t express in words. The talents that help a freelance artist or writer through the day aren’t restricted to creative skills and knowledge. Also flexibility and clear communication have their rightful place. A freelancer has to be the ultimate, self-disciplined professional. Not a freewheeling ice-skater.


What inspires freelance artists and writers?

Leonardo da Vinci used to take a stroll in the garden of his patron, his eyes piercing the blue sky. That’s how he came up with his amazing inventions, drawing, and writings. Now, if you believe that you might as well print your own banknotes. Inspiration comes with working hard. A freelance artist gets inspiration because of experience, work ethic, and finding out how to help his client. Before the deadline materializes, our freelancer followed the itinerary. That’s research, conceptualization, towards completed creation.

In order to bring this schedule to an end, he or she obtained a well-organized and proved routine, comparable to a 9 to 5-er. Including the occasional overtime.

A freelancer has an office, which is due to the nature of his/her activities largely online. For a writer, this means owning a laptop with sufficient storage. Files of previous research, the artists’ (online) portfolio, a compilation of other great artists’ work. A collection of useful photos, course material, templates, e-books, and guides. When the artist/writer feels it’s time to do some work, pressing the power button opens an entire library and workshop. And inspiration.


What fields they work in?

For professional artists of the 21st century, their art is a craft based on skills others don’t own. It’s the result of a productive, creative process. Art is bound to rules. The original old Greek work for it evolved into our modern speech as technique and technology. An artist doesn’t live in a shed, being drunk all day long. It’s about doing real and practical work. Examples are illustration, design, photography, copywriting, essay writing, and so on.


Where they find clients?

Unsurprisingly, many self- employed freelancers work part-time. They still have ties with their old job. Finding enough clients and getting paid sufficiently to burn all the bridges doesn’t happen overnight. The freelance activities supply additional income until they can replace working for a boss. Building a clientele takes time. Let’s get into the shoes of a freelance writer.


Possible clients
– University and college students
– Website owners
– Business owners
– Job seekers
– Other freelancers


Other freelancers? Since we all only have 2 hands, and can’t be experts on everything, even freelancers hire freelancers. They do their editing, proofreading, graphic design. Sometimes even their writing (that’s called ghostwriting). It’s obvious that a writer isn’t necessarily skilled in let’s say IT-related hocus-pocus.

Students often look for a professional writer to help out with papers, essays, thesis, …

People looking for a job need a resume or CV. Or the freelance writer edits an existing resume or writes it from scratch.

– Job boards/market places (Reed, Monster,, Upwork, Guru, PeoplePerHour, …)
– Professional online writing services
– Social media (LinkedIn is the Facebook of professionals)
– Own network (website, email list, etc.)


How they get paid?

Old-school artists had patrons. Well, the geniuses had. We are thinking of the Mozarts, the Shakespeares and the Michelangelos. The rest of us need to work. There is a contemporary equivalent called Patreon. Artists on Patreon rely on financial contributions from subscribers, aka fans. This in return for exclusives or other firsthand privileges. Most freelance artists and writers, however, use earthlier sources of income.

The freelancer completes the work agreed on and gets paid by the client. It’s not more complicated. This involves sending invoices, using a business bank account or PayPal, receiving checks.


What they invest in?

No professional can work without tools. So, investing in them is a wise business decision. A freelancer needs accounting software, tax preparation software or service, proofreading software. Free versions may need upgrading to get more features. From time to time investing in the services of freelancers with skills he or she doesn’t have (yet).

On a philosophical note, a freelancer also invests in progress. Getting better and more experienced, faster without giving in on quality.



As you can see, the life of an online freelance artist/writer looks a lot like that of any businessman or woman. The romantic interpretation of a globetrotting free-spirited adventurer isn’t realistic. Yes, it is a nice way of living, with more freedom and autonomy compared to an office job. But a freelancer runs a business. He delivers work: The best possible article, an original essay, engaging guest posts. She promotes her service and closes sales deals. Here you can read what a day in the life of a freelance artist looks like. Many essays, blogs, and articles describe the daily routines, perks, and up/downsides of the Freelancer’s life. The majority are written by freelance writers. Worth checking out.


Bogdan is the founder of Top Design Magazine. You can find him in Bucharest-Romania so next time you want to drink a beer there and talk about web and stuff, give him a message.