When searching for the perfect business opportunity, experts advise following your passion. For those with an artistic eye, you can easily turn a flare for the creative into a thriving freelance career. You may prefer a more traditional arts and crafts interest, such as custom pottery or blown glasswork. However, you can just as easily take a more typical freelancing opportunity and add a creative twist to make it your own. Here are 10 ideas for creative freelancing careers to get you started.
1. Scrapbook Design ConsultantScrapbooking and rubber stamping are no longer simply hobbies; they now make up a multi-billion dollar industry. If you have a talent for layout and design and a passion for creating lasting memories then freelancing as a scrapbook design consultant offers several opportunities. Companies, like Creative Memories and Stampn' Up, offer home-based consultant programs. For a modest fee, you receive a starter kit and then resell the supplies, and other related products, through home party demonstrations. You can go it alone and provide scrapbooking services to others, in which case you can list your services online at Creative Keepsakes Consultant Locator. Or, you can use your talent to create gift cards and other custom products to sell direct.
2. Speciality Freelance WriterWriting may be one of the first (and oldest) professions to lend itself to freelance work. However, it is time to think beyond the standard freelancing notion of writing copy for brochures, white papers and magazine articles - and get creative. For example, consider putting your talents to use writing witty, but brief, copy for online greeting cards. Or, how about selling your services as a scribe to create custom party invitations, thank you notes or love letters. Another growing trend is disatisfying customers hiring professional complaint letters to send to offending corporations.
3. Color ConsultantColor consultants are companions to the interior design business and there services are increasingly in demand. How many times have you driven by a house that sticks out like a sore thumb because it is painted a horrific neon blue or a sickly pumpkin orange? You can hardly blame the owner, given the tricky properties of paint and its ability to fool the eye as it goes from a one-inch cardboard paint sample to the real thing. The same can be said for interior colors which appear quite different on walls depending on the size of a room, or the amount of natural or synthetic lighting. Also boosting the need for color consultants in both homes and businesses is the Feng Shui movement and the recognition of the effects of color on mood.
4. Waterscapes Design ConsultantWaterscapes are an ever-popular segment of the booming industry focusing on outdoor living spaces and custom-designed gardens. As a design consultant for waterscapes you help home owners and businesses utilize water elements in their outdoor spaces. This can include designing or advising on the use of waterfalls to complement pool and spa areas, ponds (of all sizes), custom water fountains, and fun, backyard water centers designed specifically for children. If you enjoy the outdoors, are comfortable working with contractors, and have an interest in using stone or other natural elements as a function of design, you might be the perfect candidate for helping people create one-of-a-kind waterscapes.
5. Real Estate Marketing ConsultantSelling a home has become more competitive than ever and that challenge opens up an ideal freelance career for marketing professionals. Maximize your creativity working with both homeowners and Realtors to help position a home for sale. There are three primary opportunities for marketing services. As a home staging professional you are paid to declutter, rearrange and organize a home so that it looks its best for showing to prospective buyers. Or, you can offer your services to create an attention-getting Open House, in which you help the Realtor ensure there is plenty of buyers showing up to see a house for sale. Similarly, Realtors and For Sale By Owners also need help developing creative marketing materials to advertise a house.
6. Social Media ConsultantA growing trend is the use of social networking sites, such as FaceBook, MySpace and Second Life to market a traditional business. Corporations know they need to use these types of online media to reach customers but often they do not have the in-house expertise to do so. As a social media consultant you can advise companies on issues such as, the most appropriate, and cost-effective means of advertising on these and other social networking sites; creating viral videos; and even on implementing and maintaining a corporate blog.
7. Event CoordinatorThis may not be a new freelance opportunity but event and party planning offers the ultimate chance to put your creative touch to work. And, like other long-time freelancing careers, this one is also being reinvented. Stop thinking in terms of wedding planning and boring, corporate functions. The newest trend in event planning is to specialize in coordinating lavish Sweet 16 parties for teens, or the Spanish equivelant of the Quinceanera party. Event coordinators are also being hired to create intimate, romantic dinner parties for two and to organize unique and over-the-top memorial and funeral services for the ultimate going-away party.
8. Jewelry Designer and Buying ConsultantUsing precious gems or intricate beadwork to design jewelry is a wonderful way to evoke your creative muse. But this idea can extend to more than selling standard necklaces and earrings. Instead, consider designing custom necklaces, or jeweled collars, for pampered dogs and cats. The pet industry continues to expand and jewelry for fido is among the rising trends. Similarly, teens and young adults are dressing up their electronic devices with jewelry. You can design custom pieces to add to cell phones, digital cameras and MP3 players. Of course, maybe you have extensive knowledge about silver, gold and gems and would rather buy it than design it. In that case, consider offering your services as a buying consultant for upscale clients.
9. Graphic ArtistFreelancing as a graphic artist is hardly new, either, but there are ways to put an even more creative touch to the profession. Whereas you may have once designed advertisements and corporate logos, now you may prefer to specialize in online graphics. For example, you could use your artful imagination to design Avatars, or graphical representations of people for use online. Similarly, you could put web-based artwork to use in video games, Flash ads, and online videos.
10. Play ConsultantPerhaps the ultimate creative freelance career is that of a professional play consultant. Companies once paid big money for employees to attend team-building programs, and now that same concept has been reinvented as a play therapist, so to speak. You consult companies on how to use play and creative thinking in brainstorming events to engage employees and solicit better ideas. Play consultants also advise on how to use fun as a way to de-stress overworked, burned-out employees. On a smaller scale, the same concept can be targeted to a client base of young children. In that case, parents, preschool programs, and home schooling organizations hire you to provide weekly exercise programs or creative play sessions for their students.