Andi Best Freelance Designer

Being Freelance


  • Published 12-06-2022
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Being Freelance
Plunged in a gauzy hue of foliage and a temperate ambience from the breeze grazing it, I roll over in the late afternoon sun and cast aside the residual crumbs of a Digestive from the picnic blanket. I pour myself another cup of tea from my flask and I marvel at the diamonds of light skittering across the ceramic. Piercing. Infatuating.
Birdsong stitches the air and several rabbits nose the leaf litter curiously, completely unphased by my presence. One of the creatures unearths something with a rustle and gingerly deposits it into my outstretched palm. It's the sixth, crisply rolled parchment of the day, now unfurled and bearing its decree that yet another client invoice has been paid in full and on time. A hedgerow of biscuits bursts into full bloom and a nearby weasel cheers.
It's just another fine day being freelance.
OK. This isn't actually what it's like being freelance. My days aren't idly whiled away in a meadow without a care in the world. My cares are actually great and many, and keep me very much away from meadows almost all of the time.
If you are interested to know what it's like being freelance, you should have a chat with fellow freelancer Steve Folland because he is (among other freelance things) the creator and host of the popular Being Freelance podcast. At the time of writing the podcast is in its seventeenth season and has featured interviews with some 270 guests, each sharing the stories of building their freelance businesses, their anecdotes navigating self-employment, and their tips and advice from knowledge accrued over the years.
In episode 278 I had the great pleasure of sharing my story, as Steve invited me to join the ranks of freelance talent guesting on his show. There's not even an alternate dimension where I turn down that invitation.
I've been a fan of the Being Freelance podcast for several years and have gotten to know Steve fairly well through that and the associated network and social media activity, so on the day of recording it felt a lot like merely calling up a friend for a chat. We rolled the clocks back to my freelancing debut, we discussed how clients collaborate with me, and we played an enjoyable round of Spot The Lie - a Being Freelance podcast staple. We got on like a house on fire - so much so that a literal fire manifested by the end and Steve had to flee from his building to save himself.
For my first ever contribution to a podcast I believe it went pretty well. Naturally I saw it as a novel way to introduce my illustration, graphic design and coding business to a wider audience but I was also conscious not to hijack the session as a shameless marketing opportunity. Most importantly I tried to remain authentic. "Be myself". It's not really my style to vehemently espouse wisdom like some sort of admonition hose nobody can turn off. I had no sound-bites prepared, no guru-esque monikers to throw around, just an honest journeying through all the critical experiences that have shaped my career to this point.
I almost wish I could do it again, just so I could articulate things better and elaborate on a few topics. Despite that it certainly was a lot of fun and I hope that when you listen to it you enjoy the conversation.
You can listen to the episode here, and if it's the sort of thing you like have a roll back through the catalogue to hear plenty of other fab freelancers sharing their adventures breaking away from employment, grappling with problem clients, levelling up their businesses, taking the afternoon off to frolic with nature and making successes of themselves.
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