I’m Off To The Creative Freelancer Conference & Licensing Expo

Sorry for the drop off in posts lately. I was on vacation, then I was hit with a swell of client projects, and now I’m getting ready to leave town again. I’ll be in Denver June 5-6 for the 3rd annual Creative Freelancer Conference, then I’m zipping over to Las Vegas June 7-10 for the Licensing Expo. The HOW Design Conference is also going on at the same time as the Expo, in fact it’s even in the same hotel as the Creative Freelancer Conference. Talk about a tough choice. I’ve never attended either event but after giving it some thought I decided on the Expo.

I’ve been hearing a lot of buzz about licensing lately. Between networking and walking the floor at the Expo I’ll also be attending some classes that will help me get a better sense of how the licensing industry works and whether or not it could be a good fit for me as a way to grow my illustration business. I already know a fair amount about the advertising and design worlds and have a solid network in that industry, so in a sense I’d be treading old ground at the HOW conference. I know relatively little about licensing so I’ve got the potential to expand my horizons much further at the Expo. Or I might decide that licensing isn’t for me, in which case I still come out ahead. Knowing where not to direct your energies can be just as valuable as knowing where to direct them. Either way its a great opportunity for me to learn a lot about the industry in a very short amount of time.

I’m also really looking forward to the Creative Freelancer Conference. I’ve attended the last two years and each time I’ve come away with valuable tips and tricks that have helped me work smarter, find better clients, and make more money. While I can’t speak for anyone else, in my case each year my income has bumped up enough as a result of what I’ve learned from the seminars and speakers that the conference has easily paid for itself and then some. If you hurry there’s still time to register and even save $25 with their Twitter promotion. Details here.

On another note, yesterday I finally finished a large animation project that I’ve been working on for about eight months. I’m very happy with how it turned out and can’t wait to show it to you. But for the moment I’ve got to keep it under my hat until the client is ready to reveal it. Stay tuned.

I’ll be back in the studio on Friday, June 11 and this time I’ll be staying put for a while. Regular blogging will resume as soon as the dust settles.

Time Is Running Out For Creative Freelancer Conference

Time is running out to register for the Creative Freelancer Conference June 5-6 in Denver. If you make some or all of your living freelancing, this conference is a must! I’ve attended the previous two years and I can tell you, you are doing yourself a disservice if you miss it. Even though I’ve been freelancing for 13 years I’ve still picked up plenty of tricks and tips at each conference that has helped me work smarter, communicate with cients better, and boost my income.

As a bonus, if you take part in their Twitter promotion you’ll save an additional $25 off the registration price. Details here.

(Full disclosure: If you enter my Twitter name (“cedrichohnstadt”) when you register I’ll be in the running to win an free iPad. But I’m not expecting to win so I don’t want you to think that’s why I’m plugging the conference. I would highly recommend it with or without my very slim chances of winning.)

Discount for Creative Freelancer Conference

Today (April 15) is the last day to get the early-bird discount on the Creative Freelancer Conference. Plus, if you take part in their Twitter promotion you’ll save an additional $25 off the registration price (even after today’s deadline, I believe). Details here.

Full disclosure: If you enter my Twitter name (“cedrichohnstadt”) when you register I’ll be in the running to win an free iPad. But I’m not expecting to win so I don’t want you to think that’s why I’m plugging the conference. I’m being completely sincere when I say the Creative Freelancer Conference is a *fantastic* resource and I would highly recommend it with or without my very slim chances of winning.

This will be the third annual conference. I attended the first two and each one has been one of the professional high points of my year. Even though I’ve been freelancing for thirteen years I still learned an awful lot from these conference that has helped me to be more professional and boost my income. In my case, I’ve learned enough ways to make more money through all the great seminars that each conference has easily paid for itself.

But its not just about the money. You’ll also learn a great deal about how to run your freelance career more like a business, which just makes life a little easier. At past conferences I’ve learned a lot about “scary” topics¬† like networking, self-promotion, how to talk to clients about money, etc. The folks who put this conference together are top-drawer and really know their stuff.

I own a ton of books on freelancing but when am I ever going to have time to read an entire book? By carving out a couple of days in my schedule to get out of my studio and focus solely on learning about freelancing, surrounded by other creatives with the same goal, has been a terrific solution for me. Each year I’ve come back smarter and excited and ready to take my business to the next level.

Unfortunately most art schools don’t do a very good job of preparing their students for the business side of freelancing. I’ve certainly had to learn most of it on the fly. Fortunately this conference is custom-made for illustrators, designers, photographers, and other creative types who would rather be creative than do a business plan. You’ll learn how to make your skills profitable from other successful people who speak your same language.

The conference this year will be June 5-6 in Denver. It will be immediately followed by the HOW Design Conference so you can kill two birds with one stone if you are so inclined.

More info on the Creative Freelancer Conference here.

Creative Freelancer Conference Recap

Last week I attended the second annual Creative Freelancer Conference in San Diego. The goal of the conference is to help creative freelancers (i.e. illustrators, designers, writers, photographers, etc.) to improve their business skills, get better clients, and increase their income.

We artsy types aren’t exactly known for our business saavy. One thing you definitely won’t learn in art school is how to market yourself. Or write a proposal. Or network, talk to clients about money, etc. This conference fills a huge need. Each time I’ve attended I’ve walked away inspired and ready to take my career to the next level.

It was also great just to spend a few days with other people who get what it is that I do for a living. Who have the same experiences, the same problems, and we can talk shop without the other person’s eyes glazing over. Freelancing can be lonely at times so I really relish any chance I get to hobnob with my fellow freelancers.
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Conference Recap Coming Soon

I had a blast last week at the Creative Freelancer Conference in San Diego. My head is still spinning from all the great tips, tricks, and inspiring info that was served up. Can’t wait to post about it here. I’ve been swamped with all the emails and client work that piled up while I was gone, but I hope to have something posted in the next day or two. Stay tuned!

Live Tweeting From The Creative Freelancer Conference


Wed.-Fri. of this week (Aug. 26-28) I’ll be in San Diego attending the second annual Creative Freelancer Conference. The conference organizers are encouraging attendees to tweet live from the conference using the hashtag #CFConf. I plan to do a bit of tweeting but mostly I’ll be furiously taking notes during the presentations. I’m sure other attendees will be tweeting as well, some with great frequency. Just do a Twitter search for “#CFConf” to keep up on everyone’s latest tweets from the conference.

Incidentally, if you want to follow me on Twitter my username is “cedrichohnstadt“.