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Saturday, October 6, 2018

Profitable Side Gigs for Budding Creatives - By Brittany Fisher (Guest Writer)

People getting started in the arts face a conundrum: You need a portfolio to get work and money to create a portfolio. But if you get a job to fund your portfolio development, you may not have the time to create. Whether you’re a visual artist, a landscape designer, or working in another creative field, what you need is paying work that offers a high level of flexibility so you can earn income while still leaving time for artistic endeavors.

If you’re thinking that’s impossible, think again. Gigs can provide the stable income that artists and creators need to pay their bills while pursuing opportunities in the arts. While these four gigs may not be solutions for long-term employment, they’re ideal for making it work when you’re just starting out and don’t yet have a consistent stream of paying projects.

Dog Walking and Boarding

Pet care is the quintessential side gig. Once dominated by teens seeking summer jobs, increased spending in pet services has led many adults to realize there’s money to be made in pet care. In fact, has called pet spending “a recession-proof industry.” Other than insurance, marketing, and payment processing, there are also minimal overhead costs to starting a pet care business. By linking up with a company that handles the back-end for you, dog walkers and sitters can skip the administrative work and focus on earning money.

Virtual Stylist Services

Your eye for design carries through to every aspect of life, including your wardrobe. Share your sharp fashion sense by becoming a virtual stylist for Stitch Fix or similar companies. You’ll pick out clothing and jewelry to be sent to customers’ doors, and they’ll get to select from a box of curated items hand-picked by you. While there are also opportunities to work as an in-person stylist, either at a retail store or as an independent business owner, offering your services virtually means you can set your own schedule rather than be beholden to client whims.

Growing Cut Flowers

Did you know that 80 percent of cut flowers sold in the U.S. are imported? There’s a booming demand for locally sourced flowers because florists know that fresher flowers mean longer shelf lives and more beautiful arrangements. If you have a passion for horticulture and extra space in your yard, growing cut flowers could be the perfect gig. As Floret Flowers shows, you don’t need much space at all to have a productive flower garden. By planting a select few varieties that grow well in your climate and selling wholesale to local florists, you can turn flower production into an efficient side business. For creatives with a future in landscape design, it’s also an opportunity to showcase your skills.

Logo Designing

If graphic design is more your speed, try selling your services online. Novice graphic designers can get started selling logos, illustrations, and more on platforms like Fiverr and Creative Market. Once established and confident in your skills, you can market graphic design services from your own website and lose the fees. Even if you’re not pursuing a career in graphic design, basic graphic design skills are an excellent asset to have in any business.

As you can see, the options available for a side gig are incredibly diverse. Whether you want a side gig that offers a mental break from your creative pursuits or one that complements your artistic endeavors, there’s a gig out there that will enable you to earn money without consuming all of your time. Finding the right one just requires a little creativity — and that, thankfully, is your strong suit.

Image via Unsplash

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