6 painful lessons I learned as a rookie web designer

painful mistakes as web designer graphic design blender

It was 2007 and business was booming. I was getting 2-3 requests for web development work a day and could barely keep up. To cope with the growth, I brought my brother and a friend into the business with me. Neither had much experience, but I figured I could train them quickly. Then, I met the client. I’ll call him Bob. He was a nice guy and it looked like it would be a great project. He was designing his

How to grow your freelance business without hiring more staff

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If you were around at the beginning of the year, you remember that in late 2011, GraphicDesignBlender.com was seriously hacked. The site was down for a few weeks and it was quite a challenge to recover fully. Once we finally got back on our feet, we upgraded the whole site and I kicked off the new year with a question: What do you want to read about in 2012? Well, tons of you answered and gave us some great material

Build a gigantic client base from scratch

gigantic client base graphic design blender

I was recently in a lunch meeting with an entrepreneur who lives near me. We had become acquainted through some random business opportunity and, both being, internet marketers, we started to hit it off immediately. He launched his own business around 2 years ago and has been quite successful. One accomplishment I couldn’t help but noting is that he works with some of the biggest brands our community has to offer. Brands that, if you’re from the U.S., you’ll recognize

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

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?

Location Freelance Business Graphic Design Blender

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