How to keep your first design gig from spiraling out of control

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So newbie, you just landed your first big design gig huh? What are you designing? A company web site? a fancy business card? maybe some print marketing material? Congratulations on landing your first gig! Now, the key is to keep everything under-control and manageable. Getting your first gig can be exciting, but there might also be a lot of things you never thought about. Here’s how to keep your first design gig from spiraling out of control: (PS. I’d love

Take your design career to the next level with a freelancing mentor

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Have you been freelancing for a while now with less success than you had hoped for when you started out? Maybe you’re just getting started on the freelance scene and feel like a fish out of water. Whatever concerns you have  about freelancing, many of them can be resolved with a freelancing mentor. What is a freelancing mentor? The concept of finding a freelance mentor is not a new one. Plenty of freelancers do it. A freelancing mentor is simply

The best tools for tracking freelance design spending

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In many peoples’ personal financial world, the method is spend and forget. When you’re running a business, however, it pays to spend and remember. Keeping track of your spending can help you spend wiser and even save money. Any money you spend on your business can be deducted at the end of the year on your taxes. Basically this subtracts the amount you spent on the business from your taxable income and lowers your taxes some. Believe me when I

Designers: conquer the budget beast once and for all!

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Odds are, if you’re just starting out with your freelance business, money is tight and you definitely want to make the most of it. Budgeting can be very beneficial in helping you plan your spending.

10 tips for creating the ideal freelance design workspace

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One of the main draws of the freelance lifestyle these days is the ability to work wherever and whenever you want. Setting up my freelance business has left me with these guidelines for the ideal workspace.

How long should a designer fight a client about a poor design decision?

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If you’ve been designing for long, you’ve experienced a scenario like I am going through right now: You’ve met with your client, discussed the details of the project, signed a contract, and made some major progress on your project. Now, significantly through your process, your client hits you with a request that just makes your teeth hurt. It’s one of those requests that goes against everything you’ve ever learned about good design. Whether it’s auto-starting music on their web site,

What motivates you to be a freelance designer? Freelance for the right reasons.

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Each week at GDB, Dan Sweet provides priceless tips and helpful secrets to make your freelance design venture a success. You can connect with Dan on twitter or at dansweetdesign.com. I  quit my job last spring, mostly because my wife and I had our eyes set on the “big city metropolitan lifestyle,” and we were getting tired of the small college town we lived in. After several half-hearted attempts at finding full-time employment, we decided that it was time to