Welcome to the first article in a series of topics on Professional Practice!

Being a successful freelance artist isn’t easy, but it’s the only kind of work I’ll ever do. There’s nothing more fulfilling than working for yourself. In my time as a freelancer, I’ve gone from barely being able to pay rent to supporting a family of four–plus two stupid dogs. I am not a wildly successful or world renown artist, but I am doing well and making a good living.

I started freelancing during college back in 2000-2001, which means I’ve been working for clients for over a decade. In the last four or five years, I’ve moved into art direction and project management, so I’ve seen just about everything from both sides–although I still get surprised from time to time. Over the years, I’ve accumulated a catalog of do’s, don’t’s, tips, and suggestions that might be useful to other creators, whether you’re just now coming up or already keeping busy.

I’ll cover a lot of different topics in these articles from specialized subjects to the basics. They’re intended as resources for professional creatives and freelancers: Writers, artists, programmers, and people who do a little bit of everything (as many freelancers must). I’m writing most of the articles based on my own personal experiences, but I’ll also include guest posts from Outland folks who specialize in other fields. We hope this series evolves into a resource that you’ll find helpful on your journey as a professional creative.

I’ve got a list of topics, but I welcome your suggestions. Please let us know if you have a question or a topic you’d like us to cover! Just drop a comment below or message us here.

Thanks for reading!

JM