With a new year I like to revisit the past year and reflect on any major changes and see how they could have been done better. Besides moving across the country this past year, I also became a full time freelancer. With slow and busy periods, this next year holds a lot of opportunities to improve and expand.
As a freelance artist, you never stop job hunting. Every day offers the opportunity to browse more job boards or add to your ever expanding list of potential companies. – I work in an industry that usually requires me to be onsite, so I rarely contract work for home. – This also means that I need to be always prepared, because at any moment I can get that email asking if I’m available tomorrow or next week. Which is usually followed with frantic emails challenging holds for my time and trying to make sure I keep everyone happy. Communication has become key.
When not working (between gigs) it is wise to set up a schedule to keep yourself in flow. This is a big focus point for the coming year. Flexing artistic muscles and expanding knowledge can do nothing but help in future jobs or even open a path that was previously unobtainable. Make it routine, since this is now part of your job. This is in the upkeep section of freelancing along with all the invoices and tracking of funds. If it helps, look into creating a to do list framework. I set up this one (Todoist and Skillshare) so its easy to know what to do even when you’re overwhelmed or lose focus.
One thing that surprised me this past year was how much networking I did. My new New York network has grown substantially which has given new opportunities. Never underestimate the power of your network and never stop networking.
And as a final note, don’t forget to update that demo reel or portfolio with all that new work coming in. Show how you are growing and improving. And with that my to-do list just grew.