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Catching Up: Life as a Freelance Illustrator and Graphic Designer

A collage showcasing the daily life of a freelance illustrator and graphic designer. On the left, a black and white photo captures a woman focused on her work at a wooden table with a laptop and a drawing tablet. On the right, a colored image displays the same woman drawing on a tablet with a stylus, with a small dog sitting in her lap, surrounded by various art supplies and rolls of paper. Text overlay states 'Catching Up: Life lately as a Freelance Illustrator and Graphic Designer,' embellished with graphic elements such as a golden yellow script, hearts, and a daisy flower.


Hey there! Life's been busy lately with creativity 🎨, and while I’ve been a bit quiet online (cutting back on that screen time 📵, you know?), there's a lot I've been up to.

The life of a freelance illustrator and graphic designer? It's not all about splashing paint or sketching away for hours – though I wish! Nope, it's also about handling emails 📧, creating content 📝, dealing with numbers 🔢, reading manuscripts 📚, and client briefs, and oh, attempting to have a life outside of work 🌳. Sound familiar to any of you? Despite the work, there's something incredibly satisfying about it all of course.

As we welcome the second quarter of the year 🗓️, I want to look back and share some life updates and creative living.

This idea by Alain de Botton really struck me: “There is no such thing as work-life balance. Everything worth fighting for unbalances your life.”

It's a perspective shift, for sure. Yet, I still make it a point to cherish time with my loved ones and indulge in some me-time 🕰️.

I'm super excited to talk about upcoming projects, like illustrating for some amazing newbie authors 📚✨. And yes, while my personal art might be on a bit of a hiatus, I’m looking forward to blogging more and sharing insights and ideas 💡. Got any topics or questions on your mind? Just drop a comment below 💬.

Catching up for me isn't just about checking in with friends or catching up on socials 🍵. It’s about pausing, reflecting on the craziness of freelance life, and appreciating those little moments of joy and creativity that remind me why I chose this path in the first place 🌟.

A dual-themed image reflecting the professional and personal aspects of a freelancer's life. On the left, a woman in a café sits at a table with a butterfly illustration and a coffee with artful latte design, representing a creative environment for an illustrator. The right side features the woman at work, leaning over a notebook with a map in the background, suggesting planning or inspiration drawing, with pink flower graphics added for visual interest.

The Unseen Side of Freelance Life

Imagine freelance life as a non-stop adventure 🎢. Sounds dreamy? It is. But it's not just about making art 🖌️. It’s about being your own manager for everything: from creating art for your clients, managing emails 📧, generating content 📝, and doing research 🔍, to handling the finances (the least fun part, believe me 💸). It’s about showing up for yourself!

Each piece of art, whether it’s client or personal, every blog post, is a one-person effort 🤹‍♂️. It’s not just talent; it’s about perseverance, managing the hustle, and still finding time for life’s other bits. It’s a juggle that often feels more like a circus 🎪, but somehow, it’s all worth it.

Finding Balance in the Chaos

The whole idea of work-life balance seemed like a fairytale to me 🏰. How do you balance everything when what you love also consumes so much of you? Then, Alain de Botton’s words hit me: embracing the imbalance, finding joy amidst the chaos, that’s the real deal 🌀.

In spite of it all, I prioritize time with my loved ones and myself 💖. It’s these moments that refill my creative tank and help me keep all my courage going.

Looking Ahead with Excitement

The road ahead is full, It scares me a lot of times, but it also excites me 🚀! Illustrating for some talented first-timer authors is a dream project 🌈. While my own art takes a bit of a pause, I’m looking forward to using this blog as a space for creativity, sharing the highs and lows, and everything in between 📈📉. I’m all ears for your ideas and questions, so feel free to share them below 📬.

A creative visual narrative of a freelance illustrator's lifestyle and travels. On the left, a woman dressed casually with a backpack observes a paper airplane, symbolizing travel and inspiration. In the middle, the artist is seen drawing on a digital tablet, hinting at the mobile nature of freelance work. The right side shows her walking on a beach, indicating the flexibility and freedom of a freelancer's life. The images are adorned with floral graphics and postage stamp edges, emphasizing the themes of travel and correspondence.

Wrapping Up

Being a freelance artist is fun but tough 😅. I love sharing my art and what I do with you. And, I really appreciate your support because it helps me do more of what I love.

If you like my art and want to help out, here are two easy ways:


🎨 Follow on Instagram: Please follow me on Instagram @myhappylee_darleeou. It’s where I post my latest pictures and stories. Following me there is a big help and keeps us connected.

💌 Sign Up for My Newsletter and my Buy me a coffee page: 

Sign up for my newsletter and Buy me a coffee ☕. I share news, tips, and special stuff that I don’t put anywhere else. Signing up supports me a lot.

Every follow, sign-up, or even telling a friend about my work really helps. It keeps me going and makes my creative work possible.

Thanks for being with me on this journey. Let’s keep making and sharing. 💖

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