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College of Design

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Importance of Freelance Work

So I decided this week to talk about freelance work. I've had the opportunity to do quite a few freelance projects during my time here at the U.

The first freelance project I was asked to do was a promotional card for one of the CDes academic advisers for a dance performance he was doing. That one was super easy, and the only freelance work I've done that I wasn't paid for. That was winter break of freshman year.

I didn't do a project again until spring semester of my sophomore year, when I was asked to design some posters for a Modern African History course. That summer, I was asked to create the marketing materials (read: gigantic poster) for the U's team in a national food science competition creating a new food product.

The following winter, Chris (the adviser) was doing another performance, but this one was a collaborative performance in New York--that one was a little trickier, but all three parties really enjoyed the outcome.

Last spring, I volunteered to do some public relations work for a lady one of my professors knew who owns a PR agency in California. I was running around this really interesting trade show for a full day, and at the end of the day she asked me to take on some web design work for her. I'm still doing that to this day.

The point of this entry is that in lieu of having a real job, it's important to start getting your name out there as soon as possible. We talked about the importance of freelance work in our design career planning course (DES 3201), that just in case you shouldn't find a job right after graduation, pick up small jobs wherever you can to show that you're still designing.

Hopefully I won't have that problem!

Patrick Puckett
Graphic Design BFA

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Samples from an electronic portfolio I've assembled: the Modern African History poster and Chris Schlichting & Ursula Eagly's performance postcard.