How to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai

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Graphic Designer in Dubai

How to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai

We’re sharing tips on how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai.

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai UI Design

Becoming a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai is no easy task — but it’s completely worth the effort.

Of course you could just stay at your desk, hating your job forever. Or, you could take my advice below and learn how to become a freelance graphic designer.

Being a freelance designer in Dubai can be freeing. Working on projects you care about; determining your own schedule; being your own boss.

There’s nothing better.

 

So if you’re ready to join thousands of creatives who we’ve helped teach how to become a freelance graphic designer in Dubai, keep reading because this article is for you!

Of course, this all assumes you have some sort of background in design. While I wish we could teach you how to become a graphic designer in Dubai in one article, I’m afraid I can’t.

Prior to the step 1: You can get your freelance license in the following government authorities:

Dubai Media City Free Zone

Go to gofreelance.ae and register as a freelancer, there you will find what activities you can register as a freelance designer in Dubai. They’ve also listed the frequently ask questions, visa requirements, fees and everything you need to know on being a freelancer in Dubai.

Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED)

To register for the freelancer license, applicants can call ADDED on 02 815 8888 or register a new account with the Abu Dhabi Business Centre on www.adbc.gov.ae

Sharjah Media City Free Zone

Shams.ae is Sharjah based free zone that offers similar activities and fees.

Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (Rakez)

Rakez.ae is Ras Al Khaimahbased free zone that offers similar activities and fees.

Ajman Media City Free Zone

www.amcfz.ae is Ajman based free zone that offers similar activities and fees.

 

Creative City Fujairah

www.creativecity.ae is Fujairah based free zone that offers similar activities and fees.

1. Find your first clients (fast)

If you want to learn how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai who actually stays in business — instead of going back to your day job — then the absolute most important task at hand is getting your first clients.

Why? If you don’t have clients, you don’t have a business. And if you don’t have a business, you haven’t become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai. You’re just a hobbyist.

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai Meeting

Too many Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai waste time building a portfolio, coming up with a business name, designing their invoices, and doing other tasks that won’t ultimately help you become a Freelance Graphic Designer.

Getting your first freelance graphic design dubai clients will give you confidence, momentum, and traction from which you can become a freelance designer more quickly.

As a 3D/graphic designer, you give your clients fresh, sleek visual identities. Your specialty is packing personality into logos, websites, and more. If you’re looking for a way to make money as an artist while keeping your schedule flexible, freelance graphic design could be the career for you.

But knowing how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai and actually being one takes a few crucial steps. What are those steps?

  • Assess your skills and choose a niche
  • Create your unique brand
  • Build your portfolio with new clients​
  • Protect your business

Follow these and you could be well on your way to one of the highest paying freelance jobs. This is your guide to becoming a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai. Let’s do this!

Over-deliver for your first clients

The next critical step on your journey to learn how to become a freelance graphic designer is to make your current clients very happy.

It doesn’t matter if you found your first clients through your personal network or through freelancing websites, in either case each client represents an opportunity for more work.

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai Over Deliver

How? Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai who over-deliver on their promises with design clients:

Get more repeat design work

If you do a good job the first time (more than good, really) your client is far more likely to hire you a second time. You might even be able to convert your one-time client into regular, recurring revenue.

Get more design client referrals

Over-delivering for one client doesn’t just impact the amount of freelance graphic design work you receive from that one client, but also impacts the likelihood of getting referrals from that client in the future. More on that below.

Assess your skills and choose a niche

If you’re considering a career in graphic design, you likely already have an artistic sensibility and some digital design know-how. As you get started in creating 3D/graphic design work, make sure you have familiarity with the following tools:

Adobe Creative Suite programs (or the like) — As a freelance graphic designer, much of your work will entail creating reusable .pngs and .jpgs for use across the web. Most graphic designers use Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign in some combination. However, if you’re not ready to invest in these programs, check out alternatives like Affinity Photo and Fusion.

Pantone Color Matching System — Many of your future clients will use your design for both printed and digital materials. Use Pantone swatches to find the right shade for print materials.

Sketching tablet — Many graphic designers like to start off by drawing. Rather than scanning from paper to your computer, get familiar with sketching on your tablet so you can easily import designs to your editing software.

3D Modeling Software — Many graphic designers upgrade to 3D designer or architectural skills and does not stay in 2D designing. There are many 3D software around to create 3D and architectural designs like, AutoCAD 3D, Rivet, Maya, 3DS Max, Cinema 4D, Blender, Fusion and many more.

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai Finding Niche

Once you have the appropriate skills and tools for graphic design work, consider what kind of project’s you’d like to take on. A graphic designer could specialize in any of the following:

Of course, many Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai excel in more than one of these areas. Choose a few and start assembling a list of services for your website.

Tap into your personal network

If you’ve been working a desk job for a while or you’ve been a student for a few years, you probably have a decent personal network. That’s something you can (politely) tap into in order to help you become a freelance graphic designer.

Instead of blasting social media posts into the void, strategically think through friends or relatives you have that might know someone who has need of a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai.

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai Tablet

Connect with them using a customized, personalized outreach email and ask them to start putting feelers out there. You’ll be surprised what might come back.

Fore more ideas, read How to Get Freelance Clients — our article featuring 7 ideas that work for getting clients.

Build your portfolio with new clients

Once you’ve built your website and created a design portfolio, you’re ready to start looking for Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai work. Use the following resources:

Networking — Link to your new website on your social media pages and ask for friends and family to follow your new business page on Facebook and Instagram. People in your social network may already be looking for a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai.

Databases — There are a number of boards that regularly post jobs for Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai. Check out the following:

  • Dubizzle
  • Khaleej Times
  • CreativeGuild
  • Behance
  • beBee Network
  • Indeed
  • Freelancer

Portfolio websites — In addition to your website, you can advertise your services on platforms like Design Hill and Fiverr.

Once you have your first few design projects, you’ll be able to build out your portfolio and your network. Consider giving your happy clients a small discount on the next job if they refer you to a friend (and that person hires you, too).

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai Personal Portfolio

Build a minimum viable portfolio

You wouldn’t believe the number of Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai who I work with on a daily basis that tell me they’re not ready to start marketing their business because their portfolio isn’t finished yet.

What a sad waste.

To avoid the same fate and master how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai who actually gets clients and grows their business, here’s my advice:

Build a minimum viable freelance portfolio.

What do I mean by “minimum viable”? It’s a phrase stolen from tech startup world that essentially means you answer the question “what’s the least I can do to prove my hypothesis and satisfy my customer?”

If you’re serious about learning how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai, you should build a small (maybe even just one-page) portfolio that highlights only your best work and encourages visitors to hire you.

I’ve written extensively on the topic of minimum viable portfolios for Freelance Graphic Designers. The most in-depth piece (and most helpful, in my opinion) is this one:

Have a quick read and then come back here to finish out learning how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer.

Brand yourself and name your business

Once you’ve got a few client leads cooking, you can start to think about the other elements of how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai.

Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai Designer

First up, is to think through how you’ll brand and name yourself. This is important to tackle fairly early on because, for most Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai, word of mouth proves extremely important.

Many freelancers debate whether you should use your own name or a business name. If your goal in becoming a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai is to stay a one-person business forever, then use your own name as the company name.

But if you ever want to grow your freelance business to be bigger than just you, you may want to consider coming up with a name for your design business.

If you need more help on coming up with the right business name, you might also want to take a look at our business name-generating workbook here.

Master proposals, invoicing, and paperwork

Learning how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai isn’t just about getting clients and doing the creative work, though.

As a freelance designer, you’ll also need to run your design business.

That means learning how to write an invoice, sending proposals to your clients, working with contracts at times, and lots more.

While you can do the bare minimum (Google Docs or similar) when first getting started, I recommend quickly finding some sort of freelancer invoicing software you can use to make your life easier.

Image for post

For example, my top recommendation, Freshbooks, not only helps you create professional invoices in less than 30 seconds, but also automatically follows up with any clients who forget to pay their invoices.

Readers of this blog can try Freshbooks free for 30 days and then it’s only $15/mo after that, which I think is a pretty good investment.

If you’d like to try something else, Quickbooks makes a pretty good alternative to Freshbooks.

I can also confidently recommend Honeybook or Bonsai.

Design your business to last

As a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai, your goal is to create designs that hold up over time. Build your business the same way. Use these steps to help transform your passion into a job you love.

  • Assess your skills and choose a niche
  • Create your unique brand
  • Build your portfolio with new clients​
  • Protect your business

With these simple steps, you’ll create a business with as much staying power as your designs.

Image for post

Always be finding new clients

Do you know one of the biggest complaints I hear about becoming a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai?

The feast-famine cycle.

It’s such a common concern for freelance designers. Essentially it’s the challenge of having plenty of work this month, and not nearly enough work next month.

And it happens far too often to people striving to learn how to become a Freelance Graphic Designer in Dubai — and make it stick.

How can you not fall trap to the feast-famine cycle of freelance design?

Always be finding new clients.

Image for post

No matter how much extra work you have to do; no matter how many client projects you currently have; no matter how swamped you feel; always make time to find new clients.

Dedicate a certain number of hours each week to client outreach activities such as cold-emailing, networking, or SEO.

Of course, if you’re totally swamped, I recommend you automate your client-finding activities by signing up for free services like Google Alerts or paying a small fee for services like SolidGigs.

10. Get referrals every chance you have

Some of the happiest freelance graphic designers I’ve interacted with get most of their business through word-of-mouth marketing.

Image for post

No expensive ad campaigns. No constant cold-outreach. No pestering local businesses at a meet-and-greet.

But getting automatic word-of-mouth promotion can be difficult early on in your journey learning how to become a freelance graphic designer.

Which means you’ll have to build it in.

Sources:

https://www.thimble.com/blog/how-to-become-freelance-graphic-designer
https://millo.co/10-steps-to-becoming-a-successful-freelance-designer

Posted in medium.com

 

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