How Do I Become a Freelance Graphic Designer?

Fancy a career in graphic design? Perhaps you are already a graphic designer looking to become a freelance artist or you are new to the career seeking experience. This article will help you answer the question, “How do I become a freelance graphic designer?” with wise tips and guidance.

Whatever your reason might be, a career in graphic design can be enjoyable, rewarding, and profitable. But where do you start? Making your name for yourself as a freelance graphic designer can seem like a daunting task that few of us are brave enough to venture into. 

Apart from you, reading this right now. You have taken the step to independence and working for yourself; you go! But now you have found yourself wanting to know more, yes? Curious about getting work, knowing what to charge, and where you should work from?

Well, wonder no more! Today we will walk you through how to become a freelance graphic designer so that the world can see your fantastic work! 

How do freelance graphic designers get work?

There are a few ways that freelance graphic designers can get work. One option is to join an agency. Graphic design agencies will connect you with potential clients interested in your work for a commission charge. 

These agencies all work in slightly different ways. Some will charge you a fee; others will take a percentage from each piece of work that you complete for a client. 

Another option is to approach clients yourself directly. Speaking to the client directly cuts out the middleman agency and allows you to keep 100% of the money you make (aside from tax).

You can find these clients on social media or job sites where companies are looking for a freelance graphic designer. In these cases, you will need to discuss payment, the brief, and any questions you might have with the client directly, which can be time-consuming. 

Another option is to wait for clients to contact you. An attractive website and extensive social media following usually help spread about a new freelance graphic designer around town. 

In these cases, posting regularly on social media, networking, and engaging with as many people as possible will boost your profile and increase the chance of clients contacting you. 

Most graphic designers will use a combination of these methods to secure freelance work. 

How much do freelance graphic designers charge?

How do freelance graphic designers get work?

A tricky part for every artist is knowing how much to charge for your work, and unfortunately, no one answer suits every graphic designer. The amount you charge will vary on the brief you have to complete and your experience level. 

Generally speaking, beginners will charge roughly $25-50 per hour, with more experienced and senior designers charging up to $300 an hour. It can feel daunting asking for this much money an hour, but remember, your time is valuable!

It is often easier to offer a client an hourly rate, as you can charge extra if the project takes longer than anticipated.

For example, if you are asked to create a series of digital backgrounds and estimate the work will take 10 hours at an hourly rate of $25, but the work takes an extra 2 hours, you can comfortably charge the client an extra $50. 

When charging for your work, you include charges for the work taking longer than expected to ensure there is always transparency between you and your client. 

You can also charge rates based on a project rather than an hourly rate. When deciding how much to charge per project, consider the time it will take, any resources you will need, and the scale of the work. 

In these cases, offer a total price for the whole project. You can break down the cost for clients and explain how you have come to the cost if needed.

As a first-time freelance graphic designer, it is often worth reaching out to other designers who can assist with how they worked out their prices. 

How much should I charge for a logo design?

Working out how much to charge for a logo design can be difficult for freelance graphic designers. Generally, graphic designers charge between $30-300 on their experience and the brief in hand.

When deciding how much to charge for a logo design, consider the time it will take to create the logo, similarly to when determining how much to charge for your work. 

Logos are a piece of work that will feature across the brand’s social media and physical presence. When it comes to charging for a logo design, you can use the following formula to work out how much to charge: 

Level of expertise + brief specification + time taken + service and support + level of demand + current economy + physical location = total cost. 

In some cases, you might not have a cost for each part of the formula; that’s okay. Work with the factors that you do now and be as transparent as possible with the brand.

Remember that there can be negotiations with the cost, but do not undervalue your work, and it’s worth it!  

Can you work at home as a graphic designer?

Yes, you absolutely can work from home as a graphic designer. Your ability to work from home will vary depending on the medium you use and space you have at home. For example, if you work on a tablet or laptop, you have the flexibility to work anywhere. 

For those working on larger PCs or iMacs, you might want to consider a separate office in your home that will provide you with a larger space to work. 

Working from home is not without its challenges, though. There are often more distractions here than a dedicated office or studio that you travel to. Your ability to work from home will depend on yourself; many graphic designers swear by it! 

The perk of being a freelance graphic designer working from home is that you can set your schedule and work in areas that suit you best. You might work in bed during the day or spend the evenings at your kitchen table; the flexibility is yours! 

When deciding whether to work from home, consider your home setup, distractions, and childcare responsibilities. These can all provide distractions that need to be dealt with and can take time away from your work. 

Final word

Here we are, at the end of today’s article! As you can see, becoming a freelance graphic designer is not the daunting task you thought it might have been! 

Setting your hours, charging the rates you deserve, and working with a range of exciting clients is now within your reach! 

About Chris Craft

Hi! I'm Chris(topher) Craft. I'm a believer, husband of an amazing woman (Wanda), and father of three talented kids (Naomi, Maria, and Elijah). I love writing, making music, learning about God's Hand in History, entrepreneurship, and basketball. Thank you for reading my stuff! ❤️ Connect with me on Twitter @CraftWrites.