What should you get paid on your first freelance project?

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So you’re ready to freelance huh? You’ve got your web site up. You’ve got some school projects in your portfolio. You’re ready to start calling clients and pitching your services. So what’s stopping you? If you’re like a lot of designers I talk to regularly, you don’t know how much to charge for your first freelance project. The most common deterrant Believe it or not, I think this is one of the most common reasons freelance designers don’t take the

How to stick to your business goals when the going gets tough

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Did you read my earlier post about how I set my first 10 design business goals? It’s been less than a year since I first wrote them, and already I have reached some of them (and set new ones)! (PS: Preston also posted a video blog about the importance of setting annual goals.) Okay, okay, so you know you should have business goals, and hopefully you developed some great ones, but now months have passed… are you sticking to them?

What’s the best way to backup your design files?

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I get questions all the time about running a design business and usually, I can kindly point readers to a past post on Graphic Design Blender, but I absolutely LOVE it when a reader stumps me with a question. Why do I love it? Because now I get to ask you and learn from you! That’s right. Today, the tables are turning and I need your help answering a reader’s question. Here’s a summary of the email I received from

Is your location killing your freelance business?

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One of the beautiful things about being a freelance designer is the freedom to live where you want, be it within walking distance of the ocean, near family, or three floors above the most awesome coffee shop downtown. But does location matter? Are freelancers elsewhere enjoying more business success due to their location? Would your business benefit from moving? Whether you’re enjoying a steady stream of work or hoping for that next client, answer the questions below to determine whether

50 Stunning graphic design portfolios you MUST see before (re)designing yours

50 graphic design portfolios

Feeling like your graphic design portfolio needs a face lift but in need of some inspiration? I’ve compiled a list of 50 awesome graphic design portfolio examples and a short blurb on why I’ve chosen them, categorized alphabetically by awesome design element, to spark creativity for designing or redesigning yours. Take a look and let me know which ones are your favorite by leaving a comment on this post! Great Use of Color Authentic Style :: The brown and orange

How designers can charge more without having an awkward client conversation

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You all know April, right? If you don’t yet, I would recommend you read through some of her posts here at GDB. She’s quickly becoming a seriously great author on this blog. Not only does she write about some awesome stuff (as evidenced by the number of comments, tweets, and shares that her posts get), but she’s also a great business person. (At least I think so, after you read this post, let me know if you agree or if

Untapped resource: attend trade exhibitions to find new design clients

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(A note from Preston:) A little while ago Laura, who wrote this post, approached me with this idea. I thought it was an incredible untapped resource. One I had never realized a designer could profit from. This seems like a great place to find design clients. After reading, let me know if you agree by leaving a comment. As a graphic designer, having a fantastic portfolio may be impressive but nothing will beat potential clients seeing your work in person.

Make this very important change to your design contract today!

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Often as freelancers (budding or otherwise), our goal is to get ‘out there.’ We want as many people as possible to view our LinkedIn portfolio, visit our blog, appreciate our Behance project, and contact us for work. We have no qualms about exposing our names and contact information, and we often forget that others have different privacy preferences. Really?! You mean there are people, or even entire companies, in this day and age who don’t want their information spread across