Get advice on finding freelance gigs, marketing your work, pricing, writing contracts, and more.

Freelancing can be a very attractive career path for many creative professionals. It affords high levels of flexibility, freedom, and variety. However, it also has its unique challenges. Freelancers should be prepared to learn basic business skills as well as commit to marketing their abilities. But don’t worry, there are plenty of helpful tools and resources available to support freelancers of all levels. This page outlines some of the key things to consider when freelancing, along with some helpful resources you can use.

Market and Promote Your Work

As a freelancer, knowing how to market yourself is essential. Getting your work in front of the right audience is a key ingredient to sustaining a freelance career. Learn how to create an effective online portfolio, market via social media, and create compelling marketing collateral using the resources linked below.

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Network to Find Work

A significant portion of the way people find work is through networking. In fact, many freelancers find opportunities from connections and referrals. This means that building relationships with people in your community (both real-world and digital) and spreading the word about your talents is an essential way to get more opportunities. Use networking sites and the RISD alumni network to connect with the creative world!

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Finding Freelance Job Boards

When starting out, it can be helpful to look for available freelance gigs that are posted on websites dedicated to the freelance community. The quality of opportunities can sometimes vary on these sites, so you should be selective in what you pursue. Still, these can be a good way to test out the freelance market and get some early experience. Use the resources linked below to find opportunities!

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Price It Right

Knowing how to price work is often one of the most daunting challenges for emerging freelancers. Many often choose between pricing by an hourly rate versus a flat fee per project. Learn different pricing models, industry pricing rates, and more in the resources linked below.

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Contracts and Legal Issues

Using contracts and understanding your legal rights is a crucial element of a freelance practice. In this section you can learn about key factors for writing contracts, understanding intellectual property, and find resources for expert legal advice.

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Accounting and Finance

When you freelance, you are basically running a tiny small business. So, you need to have a basic understanding of accounting and tax fundamentals to be smart financially. This section has links to teach you accounting basics, software to help organize your finances, and ways to find additional expert assistance.

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Freelancing Video Tutorial

Watch this for advice on freelancing best practices presented by long-time freelancers Ed Shems '91 IL and Justin Perricone.