Create a Better Design Business
Graphic design resources for the entrepreneurial freelance designer. This resource list slants towards websites packed with tips on how to find and keep design clients, marketing, pricing, productivity etc.
The websites are sorted by category (click to go to category):
- Business Advice
- Designers with Personal Brands
- Graphic Design
- Identity Design
- Packaging Design
- Print Design
- Web Design
- Mixed Design
These blogs focus on the business side of being a creative freelancer: business strategy, marketing, selling, pricing, getting paid, productivity tips etc.
The Bēhance blog. 99U provides actionable insights on productivity, organization, and leadership to help creatives people push ideas forward.
This is the blog of Sheila Patterson. Sheila is a graphic designer helping small businesses and startups. Her blog offers business and marketing tips both for clients and fellow freelancers. Her 14 Proven Ways to Find Clients is a favorite.
Graphic designer, web designer, and web business entrepreneur. Bianca Board, CEO of Web123, wears a lot of hats but her favorite is teaching you how to build a web business you love. Bianca is very hands on. She writes a lot about online marketing.
Business Unleashed (former Freelance Unleashed): Chris Green is helping creatives, consultants and coaches to run profitable businesses. I have especially enjoyed some of Chris’ freelancer interviews and podcasts.
Freelance design blog for graphic and web designers – one of my favorites! A lot of business tips. Read this: Three client-types that are guaranteed to bring tons of business.
An online magazine for creative freelancers published by the software company Contently.
The Freelancers Union’s blog has an amazing width of high-quality blog posts on all aspects of the freelancing life. Sara Horowitz heads Freelancers Union. Sara is also the author of The Freelancer’s Bible.
Tips on freelance business, marketing, money and productivity.
In-depth articles on illustration ideation, execution and publication from an illustrator’s perspective.
The Lab is the Q&A blog that answers questions on marketing, business and creativity. The Lab is run by Agency Access, a direct marketing service for freelance creatives, e.g. photographers, illustrators, artist reps and stock agencies.
I like Ilise’s no-nonsense, down-to-earth approach. Ilise Benun is a marketing coach helping creative solopreneurs, consultants and owners of small creative firms.
This is the blog of freelance illustrator Alex Mathers. He is dedicated to help his creative fellows to grow their businesses in a long-term, organic and non-sleazy way. Alex writes about things like branding, target markets, connecting, being indispensable, staying motivated, and standing out. Alex knows the ins and out of social media.
Rob Cubbon is a web designer by trade. His blog offers practical tips to help anyone who needs to promote themselves or their business. Rob regularly publishes a passive online income and business report on how is own business is developing – interesting stuff.
The blog of The Creative Group. TCG is a staffing agency for interactive, design, marketing, advertising and public relations talent. The TCG blog writes about trends in the creative industry, salary stats, job opportunities, and management and leadership advice.
Graphic designer Alex Singleton’s blog. Alex owns a small UK design studio. On The Design Range Alex candidly shares his experiences on how creatives can increase their income from doing what they love.
This is Walter Kania’s blog. Walter has freelanced 20+ years. On The Freelancery he shares ideas, tools and know-how that will help freelancers thrive – and staying sane. Walter writes about money, pricing, finding and keeping clients, branching out and generally kicking ass as a freelancer…
This is the blog of Vitamin T, a staffing agency for ad agencies and mid-size companies looking for digital talent. A lot of blog posts on web design and career advice.
This is freelance graphic designer Brent Galloway’s blog for fellow creatives interested in starting and growing their own freelance business. Brent continuously writes transparent, high-quality post both on Your Freelance Career and on his main site.
Designers with Personal Brands
Inspiring examples of freelance creatives with strong and/or clearly positioned personal brands, stream-lined and /or successful personal websites, in short: masters of self-promotion.
Most of these freelancers also runs blogs well worth reading.
Independent graphic designer and author who specializes in brand design.
Jill Anderson is a good example for how to write about web design in a customer-oriented way. Jill is the “designer’s web designer.”
The much-visited blog and graphic design portfolio of Jacob Cass. Jacob is a NYC based designer specializing in logo design, web design & brand identity.
Alberto Sosa, a.k.a. “Kaiser,” is a freelance visual/UI designer from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Kaiser is a good example of a non-US, non-native speaker who is succesful in targeting US design clients.
The blog of freelance logo designer Graham Smith, a.k.a. “the logo smith.” On his blog Graham writes about logo design, brand identity and typography.
Scarlett is an Australian book cover designer for self and indie publishing authors. Her website is wonderfully targeted and customer-oriented.
These websites focus on brand, identity and logo design.
A design blog with a focus on corporate: identity & branding, web design, retail design and advertising.
iBrandStudio helps you in designing brand identities. Freebies, tutorials, and inspiration resources for identity and brand design, and some business tips.
These websites focus on graphic design. Mostly industry news, creative inspiration, tutorials, and some business advice.
News and information devoted entirely to the graphic design industry.
You the Designer is a graphic design lifestyle blog that showcases various works from the global design community and shares useful tips, trends, tutorials, creative processes and up-to-date resources.
These websites focus on packaging design. Mostly industry news, inspirational examples, tutorials, some business advice.
The Dieline’s purpose defines and promotes the world’s best package design, and provide a place where the package design community can review, critique and stay informed of the latest trends and projects. The brainchild of Andrew Gibbs.
All the ins and outs for the packaging aficionado. Packaging World covers packaging designs, machinery and suppliers.
These websites focus on print design. Mostly creative inspiration, industry news, tutorials, some business advice.
The blog of paper consultant Parse and Parcel. Stay up to date on the latest paper samples, paper inspiration, award winning graphic design and learn about new techniques.
These websites focus on web design. Mostly creative inspiration, industry news, tutorials, some business advice.
An online magazine and resource site for designers and web developers. Useful tips, news, tutorials, tools and resources, on design, development and other inspirational topics.
Six Revisions publishes tips, tutorials, and resources for web designers and web developers. From a business standpoint their project management posts are interesting.
An online magazine for professional web designers and developers. High-quality articles with a focus on useful techniques, best practices, valuable resources and the latest trends and techniques in web development.
The blog of Vandelay Design, a web design/development and stock resources firm. Inspiration, resources and information on web design and freelance / design businesses.
A blog about web design and development. It covers news, tutorials and hot topics such as responsive design, usability, typography, freelancing and much more.
A blog by web designers for web designers. It covers topics such as Photoshop, web design and photography,
These websites offer inspiration and tips for a variety of design fields. Mostly creative inspiration, industry news, tutorials, and occasionally business advice.
Bon Expose showcases creative work, and wants to inspire you to go make something magnificent, beautiful and awe-inspiring.
Design blog with focus on colors and palettes.
Design ideas, blogs, top sites and inspiration. HOW writes about graphic design, web design and shares career advice for freelance creatives.
Thought-provoking content across the fields of advertising, graphic design, digital media, illustration, photography and typography worldwide.