November 18, 2004

Curious George: Freelance web sites Do any of you creative types out there use freelance sites to get work? In particular, I was wondering about, but I would really like to know about other similar sites like and (but not including Craigslist, Monster, HotJobs or Careerbuilder).

Background: I'm a graphic designer who quit my job in September and decided to go back to school in the fall of '05. So, to keep the cats fed until then, I was hoping to find freelance work instead of a 9-5 office gig. I have all the software and hardware needed, so I'd really prefer to work from home. Thanks for any suggestions or reviews.

  • I've never used one, but every one I ever looked at was a race to the bottom. $10 logos and $100 websites. The people on Craig's list posting job openings want the world and have $10/hr to prove it -- if you're lucky. Most of the time they just offer the glory of working free for a start-up on the chance that it might go somewhere. You could do better working at MickeyD's, plus they give you a free uniform.
  • I think the story is these places are where you go when you can't find anything else, and maybe you'll get a longterm relationship with a client who lucks into some money. Or get some experience. You'd probably have better luck chatting up random strangers at the bar.
  • Yeah, I agree with everything already said. It is the worst of the worst. They only serve to damage our industry. You're better off talking to an agency like Aquent, who will place you on contract gigs. I don't have a very high opinion of them either, but they're better than those shite websites you mentioned. But the best route to doing freelance work is networking.
  • I have tried the freelance thing here in Seattle for the past year or so. All the while looking for steady work. In 2 weeks, Im moving to Boston. I give up. I have gotten about 4 paying gigs, 2 of which were for non-profits. Daniel is right tho, it is entirely about networking. I have had some luck from temp/placement agencies here. We have a couple in Seattle that are devoted to creative jobs. CreativeGroup - nothing. CreativeAssets (now "filter" after combining with ArtSource) has hooked me up with a few. That may be a better route for you to check out...
  • Freelancing: you try and try and nothing works, and then one day it happens. For me it happened after I got a fulltime job and it was too late for me. Not entirely too late, I guess, I do what I can in the evening, but I could probably be making a living with short contracts and freelance which is what I had intended to do.
  • Might as well ask here... any of you web-design monkeys interested in some very low paid/out of the goodness of your heart design work? I've been looking to overhaul my blog, and have little to-no design skill, and little to-no money. I can probably get ya some free CD's though, or a couple bucks.
  • Freelancing? Are we talking writing or what? I've never, ever, ever seen a good freelance gig posted anywhere. The only way I've ever gotten them is by approaching someone with an idea. Maybe that's different in different industries (probably is), but in writing it's up to the person who wants work to come up with some way to get paid.