How to become a freelance illustrator?

How to become a freelance illustrator?

What skills and tools you need to become a sought-after Illustrator.

What is the job of the Illustrator

Illustrators are needed in a wide range of industries from advertising to publishing. In recent years this profession has become very competitive, but there is always the likelihood that you will be able to offer something completely new and unique.

To better understand what is the profession of Illustrator, learn the different proposals on the work to understand the expectations from your future customers. This will help you, the career site or portals like Dribbble and Linkedin.

It all begins with finding the focus that you are most interested in. Explore the different kinds of illustrations, try yourself in different directions:

  • painting living materials
  • digital graphics,
  • in the image of plants in the style of Botanical illustration
  • in a stylized fashion illustration,
  • in the sketches,
  • in the comics, i
  • n the creation and animation of vector images.

As a rule, illustrators work alone: often there is no one to motivate you and you will have to cultivate confidence in themselves and in their abilities togrow and move forward on their own. Therefore, it is important to choose the direction that you are most attracted to do not have problems with motivation.

Get education

The next important step in the beginning is obtaining specialized knowledge. To become a successful Illustrator, you will need the following skill set:

  • the ability to think and to Express their creative ideas;
  • drawing skills, both traditional and digital media;
  • familiarity with color palettes, pattern  and visual textures;
  • knowledge of current trends in illustration and design;
  • ability to understand customer needs and work to tight deadlines.

A set of tools for digital illustration

The right set of tools not only streamlines your workflow but will also play an important role in your progress. A set of tools for digital illustration can be divided into technical tools and software.

Technical means

It is possible to equip the art Studio right at home: need a convenient table, chai,r and your computer. Even better is to allocate a separate room toconcentrate better, or to look fora co-working site. Most coworking facilities allow you to rent a Desk in a common space that allows ofsocialization and communication with peers.

Perfect tools for working with digital illustration is a tablet and a reliable computer. A popular manufacturer of graphics tablets is. You can use them tocreate a digital image and for processing hand-drawn.

Wacom Software

There are many software tools for digital illustrators, and the list is growing every day.

Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, and FreeHand are some of the programs you should be familiar with. Most graphic tablets and stylus pens will work well with these programs, replacing your computer’s mouse with a digital drawing tool. The most popular analogues of the Adobe package are Krita, Paint.NET, GIMPShop, Inkscape, Gravit, Vectr, Vecteezy Editor.


Your portfolio is a demonstration of your skills and potential. It is not difficult to create it: there are many platforms for this, for example, Behance, Portfolios, as well as any freelance exchanges. Harder to collect work for him. During the training process, you will create a certain number of illustrations, but do not rush to add them all to the portfolio select the ones that you consider the most successful, the most conveying your professional level.

If there are too few of them, then you can go the usual way: open any freelance exchange and see what illustrations customers need, what their expectations and requirements are.

Or you can create several projects yourself: illustrate your favorite book or movie, create fan art, draw some comics. This will help younot only create a portfolio, but also attract additional attention to it.

Can i become an illustrator?

If you think that:

  • you’re creative enough to draw from the head,
  • you can tell a story or idea with your illustration,
  • you know how to promote yourself
  • you calmly criticize then you can make an illustrator career.

Illustration is a fantastic career path for people who like to tell stories through drawing. Designing a unique style takes time and effort, but it will be worth it. If you think you have talent, then roll up your sleeves and start right now.