Win a Copy of The Designer’s Guide to Freelancing CLOSED

This festive season we want to reward you freelancers with a copy of ‘The Designer’s Guide to Freelancing‘ by Nathan Powell.

book Win a Copy of The Designers Guide to Freelancing CLOSED

How Can I Win?

Simply download the sample chapter from and tell us in the comment section below what’s the biggest challenge you face as a new (or soon to be) freelancer.

That’s it! The winner will be selected on December 24th. 

The winner will receive a copy of the Premium Package which includes:

  • The book in PDF, ePub and .Mobi
  • Exclusive interviews with Sacha Greif, Paul Jarvis, Eddie Lobanovskiy and Vadim Sherbakov.
  • Three months free subscription to nusii’s online proposal service for designers.
  • A fully responsive WordPress portfolio theme from the guys at
  • A personal video review of your current portfolio.
  • An extended licence that allows you to share the book and resources with up to five design buddies.


  1. Giveaway opens Tuesday 10th December 2013.
  2. Giveaway closes 24th December 12:00pm GMT
  3. One Entry per Person, Design Juices say on winner is final.


We’ve picked our lucky winner: Ritwik Das

  • Ritwik Das

    As a new freelancer I would say the biggest challenge I am facing right now is striking that balance between creating work for pleasure and being able to create work for business

  • Tate

    As a newbie freelancer, I really find it hard to get my first customer especially that I don’t have much designs to show off and the experience to compete with the other experienced ones.

  • Prayag Verma

    I have started freelancing just 2 months back and I am mainly using the Fiverr platform for getting my clients. As pointed out in the sample chapter as well , the main problem I am currently facing is that of trying to diversify my field of expertise too much. I am targeting a very small niche at this time therefore the need to diversify is inherent but it brings with its problems of planning/time-management and slight degradation in quality of work. My main goal is to either keep on increasing my income on a monthly basis or sustain the income I made in the previous month

  • Arian Allenson Valdez

    I have only started freelancing a month back. Perhaps one of the biggest problems I have right now is how I could learn efficiently and effectively. I am mainly self-taught, and I feel that I am definitely limiting myself as a freelancer because I choose to work on projects that I know I am already experienced on, instead of branching out and growing to a more well-rounded freelancer. I am not aiming to be a Jack-of-All-Trades – I simply aim to learn new things to stay relevant. Since I am also self taught, I am also tripping up sometimes because “I do not know what I do not know”. This is problematic to me, because both of my problems are things that ultimately, needs to be taught by a more experienced mentor.

  • Nathan Powell

    Hi Arian,

    It’s definitely a little tricky, especially when starting out. You want take on more challenging projects, but you don’t want to overstretch yourself.

    When I first started freelancing I took on a few projects where I knew I was going to struggle, I just thought I would learn on the job. Instead I got really stressed out and probably delivered sub-par work.

    That said, treading outside of your comfort zone is a good thing. It’s a positive step in the right direction. Just try not offering a service you have absolutely no idea about. There’s a huge difference between furthering your skills and promising work that you can’t deliver.

    I’m also self-taught, but the learning never stops … and that’s a good thing. You’ll always be looking for that next challenge, whether it’s in your area of expertise or something new altogether. If you don’t have an area of expertise yet, that will also come. You’ll start to see what you’re better at, and what you enjoy most.

    Take on new challenges when you know you can deliver, (even if you do have a couple of sleepless nights) and continue to study. Work on your own personal projects, they’re the best kind! Set yourself a brief and say, right for this project I’ll need to learn X, Y and Z. The pressure comes off, but you’re still obliged to deliver. Why? By holding yourself accountable. Each time I’ve wanted to take on a scary new personal project, I’ve announced it via Twitter and even set a date. This is what I did with the book :)

    It takes time, any new skill or career does, but you’ll get there and you’ll have a blast doing it.

    Good luck


  • Nathan Powell

    What kind of work are you specialising in Prayag? Are you able to find enough work on Fiverr?

  • Nathan Powell

    Hi Ritwik,

    Do you mean you just want to create work just for yourself, or that you’re not thinking of the end business goal when creating client work?

    The two can be joined. The more you dig into a client project, the more you know about your client’s goals, the more exciting and challenging the project will be for you as a designer.

    Ask more questions, don’t be afraid to keep asking why, again and again.

    If you can give me a little more information, perhaps I can focus my advice a little :)


  • Prayag Verma

    Hi Nathan

    Thanks for taking out time for answering my questions

    I am currently into designing templates for Blogger platform. About the diversification part,I have read up in many places,people suggest switching over to WordPress or Tumblr Themes design & development as it has a lot of opportunities.I have tried WP a bit , helping people with migration , installation and stuff related to plugins (not much theme design) and find it a bit intimidating and confusing. Tumblr I haven’t tried yet.

    About finding clients on Fiverr , I currently get around 7-8 orders a month. It is not a lot but this is what I can manage in my spare time (I am in my last year of undergraduate studies and the time I get after studies , I devote to freelancing ). Outside of Fiverr , I have taken up work mainly via Facebook Groups in areas like PSD-to-HTML and PHP contact forms. As you can deduce from above , I am not a pure designer , I do a bit of web development as well. I am self-taught and I am confused about what to specialize in , because I know a bit of design as well as development and like doing both. This phrase explains my present-day expertise aptly “Jack of all trades, master of none”

  • Nathan Powell

    Hey Prayag,

    OK, so it seems like you already have a lot on the go :) That’s good!

    Although I’m a big advocate for specialising, I do think we need to give ourselves time to see where we’d like to focus our skills. As you say WordPress is an ever expanding market, I think it currently powers about 15% of the entire web. I know of many companies that specialise exclusively in WP, and they do well. Certainly something to think about…

    I think while you can, ie. now, it’s good to try out a few different things. See what feels right, see what you enjoy most. It’s great that you can code and design, it makes you a double threat. It also means you can build and launch your own products and services, something I wish I could do :)

    I wouldn’t fry your brain too much about which way to go, you’re just beginning on this huge journey into Design. You have plenty of time ahead to decide on a direction. I say keep doing what you’re doing. If you can find a few clients that might need recurring work then you’ll already be on your way. If you do decide to go freelance straight out of college (not always the best decision) then you’ll already have a small client base.

    I hope this helps.

  • Prayag Verma

    Thanks Nathan for the advice
    I will give different things a try and then see which suits me best

  • Cathy Octo

    I’m an illustrator. I have started freelancing two years ago, but it was VERY ineffective. I just posted on buy and sell forums in my local (I’m Indonesian) net, and when I do find clients, they’re always stepping on me and treat me like I’m begging for a job. It’s not a good life, being a freelancer, and I found myself becoming more and more bitter towards clients and the idea of freelancing because how unreliable and how painful it can be, especially when clients decide that ‘they don’t like my illustrations enough to give me the full pay’.

    It seems that while I’m always improving my work, I keep decreasing the value of my work. I have tried reading other materials specialized for freelancing, and yet none of it strike a chord. They seem to be able to find customers (whereas I will only get very probably one per month, and that’s for super small projects). It’s also getting hard to self-motivate myself to do freelancing, because it’s really not rewarding emotionally and financially, for me.

    When I get into Reddit/r/freelancer, there is this thread called ‘best freelancer toolbox of 2013′ and this ‘Designer’s guide to Freelancing’ book is on the top of it. Mind you, I thought that this was another scammy book that I often saw on the internet. But then there are legit reviews, and it seems very…. how do I put it? Promising. I really wish I could get some insight from the people who have made it as a freelancer.

  • Nathan Powell

    Hi Cathy,

    I’m sorry you’re having such a rough time as a freelancer, the truth is, it can be hard. (I know that doesn’t help much).

    It seems from what you say, that you’re finding the wrong type of client. People who refuse to pay, or degrade you or your work, are NOT the kind of people you want to work with Cathy.

    I’ve checked out some of your work on Elance, and although I’m no illustrator I can see that you’re very talented. I’d try to forget about Elance and People per Hour for a while. Concentrate on getting yourself a real portfolio under Get together some of your very best work and and write some case studies around them, give insight into your process, give lots of information.

    Think about your illustration style:

    What kind of client does your style suit? ( I see you have quite a distinct style).

    Who would you most like to work with?

    What kind of illustrations do you most enjoy doing?…

    Go after those people who fit into your ideal client type, heart and soul. Ignore the rest. (and yes I talk about this in the book) It won’t just happen though, freelancing is hard, far harder than any office job. Why? Because it’s all on you, but you can do it. Really, you have the talent.

    Do you have a dedicated portfolio? What about a blog, or twitter account, do you go to any local meetups for creative types or entrepreneurs? Do you check out the international job boards, like dribbble, authentic, behance?

    If you like, drop by my site and write me an email. I’d love to help you see the other side of freelancing.

    Good luck

  • Jared Thompson

    Congratulations Ritwik, you were picked as our lucky winner!

  • Ritwik Das

    Thanks very much.Great stuff!! Really happy to have won the great prizes. I think they’re going to help me a lot in my development as a freelance illustrator and artist. How do I claim the prizes?