It’s possible to gain extra income whilst you study. You don’t need to be super talented, you just have to put in the effort. Balancing your life whilst studying full-time is hard. You have to push yourself to get ahead.
During my last year of college, I wanted to gain as much experience as I could. My design portfolio needed more work and I needed to learn how to deal with clients in the real world.
On my nights and weekends, I would go on designcrowd, 99designs and freelancer.com looking for graphic design work. It was frustrating because the work was never guaranteed. You have to win contests, competing with hundreds of other designers which decrease your chances of winning the job.
Soon after a friend mentioned this site called airtasker. People would post jobs ranging from design, tech, cleaning or even delivery’s. Every day I would scroll through the app looking for new job posts for graphic design work (even during class).
There were no contests, you pitch an offer to the client and they pick the person they like. When your offer is accepted the payment gets locked in until you finish the job.
I started in September and applied for as many jobs as I could. I remember doing my first job for only 30$. I accumulated $2k in just 4 months. That’s an extra $500 a month!. I did this whilst having a part-time job, an internship, college projects, and social life. You can see in the graph there are sharp jumps, I was doing $400 branding and logo design projects. I had faith and stepped out of my comfort zone. It was exciting to gain all this extra income and learn how to work as a freelancer. After college finished in December I did a few more projects, reaching almost $2.5k in total.
Not every project was a success, I made mistakes along the way. I learned from it and now I’m a better designer. I applied techniques we learned in college and developed real client relationships. I gained extra portfolio work, happy client reviews and even got a freelance contract for a boutique brand agency.
Instead of being lazy, playing games and going out for a drink, I chose to work and it changed my life. You have to create opportunities for yourself. Always take initiative, have a willingness to grow and always put in the effort.
- Gain experience to get ahead
- Create opportunities for yourself
- Boost your portfolio for the industry