featured in Flawless Magazine, https://bit.ly/2lgZ3oa
Whether you are an established make-up artist or an emerging one or simply a beauty lover you do know that freelancing life is a glorious adventure indeed. God only knows the twists and turns it has – worthy of a thrilling Netflix series.
Here is a list of 13 things about freelancing life that you may not have known, it has useful practical info to:
1. Expect the unexpected – networking does work as does word of mouth recommendations, so engage and communicate within the industry – be proactive in approaching people you admire. This way you will open a lot of doors for yourself and advance in your career. A great website and IG feed will also help.
2. Even as an experienced MUA, people do take you for granted – no matter your experience there will always be people in the industry who will try and make a profit out of your work with no intention whatsoever to pay you.
3. Clients will compare prices and most of the times choose the more ‘budget-friendly’ alternative. This is why you need to create your own brand and focus on a certain niche so you can always appeal to clients who want you for you and not because your services are affordable.
4. When working TFP, you won’t always get the pictures you expect back – lower quality or nothing at all. This mostly happens when you start out as a freelancer – but also later – make sure that you know the photographers you test with personally or you work with people you were recommended by your peers – this will decrease the chances to work for free and get nothing in return.
5. Once you have a solid portfolio you can start saying no to unpaid work, as frustrating as it may be, it is also necessary. This way you increase the respect that people have for your talent and profession. And you will also be doing the industry a big favour.
6. Your portfolio should reflect the direction you want to work in – it is almost as if you would be an actor and you would build a brilliant career by choosing the right roles for yourself. After all, you are the creator of your success path and responsible for your own professional growth.
7. It’s best to check the official industry rates when quoting your clients – stick to your guns and follow the guidelines established by trade unions (e.gBECTU in the UK) so that you get a fair pay for your time and effort and you don’t undermine the industry rates.
8. If you want a balanced work life, leave no room for ego. You might get booked 10 times in a row by a client and if 11th you will not get the booking do not panic – the artistic universe is sometimes random and things just happen. As long as you stay professional and do a great job you will definitely get contacted in the future.
9. You need to use accounting software like Xero or Wave to keep track of your invoices – it will help so much with your taxes if you don’t want to hire an accountant (yet). Keep all your receipts safe and sound – they will be a lifesaver and will help you save up money at the end of each tax year.
10. The earlier you start saving into a pension fund, the better for your mental comfort. Not to mention that it gives you more time to increase your savings before retirement and more time to benefit from tax relief on your contributions.
11. As your work is based on ongoing contact with people, it’s highly recommended that you have public liability insurance to cover any legal claims from private or corporate clients– anything from an allergy to one of your products to a stain you accidentally made on a pricey designer item can massively affect your budget if you do not have insurance.
12. Contracts are never to be underestimated. It can make or break you as a professional. Especially if you do event and bridal makeup, you will find yourself postponed, canceled last minute, not paid and the list can continue. If you are clever and write down all your terms and conditions before doing makeup on clients you have your plan B in case nothing goes as planned. Bonus: you can get money in advance for your work as deposits from clients who want to secure the booking with you.
13. The artist community is real and people will help you out in times of need – they know the struggle so do not refrain from asking for guidance or support – artists all know how it feels to hit rock bottom, but they also know how to pull themselves up, keep fighting and do the victory dance. Use up all social media channels/groups to share your thoughts and ask for advice and/or support from fellow make-up artists.
Bottom line: Farewell financial security, welcome turmoil times doubled by an emotional roller-coaster ride. Goodbye free weekends and paid holiday, private pension paid by the employer – you are your own boss now. Oh, wait! This can actually be a good thing, right ?!
You are your own boss and you can make your own choices! Make sure they are great ones!
Written by ViorelaComan, @vior_ella, www.viorelacoman.com
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