Top 10 Reasons Why Freelancers Should Create Their Own Product Line | Melanie Greenwood | Skillshare

Top 10 Reasons Why Freelancers Should Create Their Own Product Line

Melanie Greenwood, Designer & Founder of Vision City Studio

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13 Lessons (54m)
    • 1. Trailer: Top 10 Reasons Freelancers should create your own product line

      1:46
    • 2. How I got started selling products

      7:03
    • 3. Reason 1: It will cause you to find your Niche Style

      5:14
    • 4. Reason 2: Loyal Customer Following

      3:33
    • 5. Reason 3 : Make Money While You Sleep

      5:43
    • 6. Reason 4: Build Relationships with Licensing Companies

      5:55
    • 7. Reason 5: Art Shows, Trade Shows and Live Appearances

      5:02
    • 8. Reason 6: Features on Blogs and Media

      5:03
    • 9. Reason 7: Wholesale Opportunities

      3:24
    • 10. Reason 8: Recognized in your Industry

      2:58
    • 11. Reason 9: Multiply your Time

      3:38
    • 12. Reason 10: Give to a Charity you care about

      3:18
    • 13. Final thoughts and Project

      1:44

About This Class

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This course is for: Artists, Designers, Illustrators and Hand Letterers.

As an illustrator and graphic designer, I have worked on many client projects over the last ten years. However, it wasn't until I launched my own product line of art prints and cards that I really noticed a major shift in my business in an exciting direction. As I developed my in house brand, I suddenly had a customer following, licensing deal opportunities, live appearance requests, blog features, money being made while I sleep (literally!), collaboration offers... and the list goes on. 

I have made this course for other artists to see the many benefits of creating your own product line. The benefits are truly endless, but in this course I am highlighting my top 10 reasons, so that you can see the possibilities for yourself. All I can say is that by launching my own in house products, things have taken off and I have never looked back. 

By the end of this course you will have 10 solid reasons to consider making your own "in house" products. This course applies to anyone who is an artist, illustrator, graphic designer, home decor designer, textile designer, hand letterer, crafter, digital printable artist...etc. (if you can make a product, this is for you) At the end of the course, I ask you to write down your own ideas for products you can make and how this process can benefit your lifestyle and personal goals.

The top 10 reasons I will expand on in this course are as follows:

1. It will help you to find your niche

2. Develop a loyal customer following

3. Make money while you sleep! (bonus video about Digital Printables)

4. Build relationships with licensing companies

5. Art shows, trade shows and live appearances

6. Features on blogs and media

7. Wholesale Opportunities

8. Recognized in your Industry

9. Multiply your Time

10. Give to a Charity your care about

In this course I will also discuss the power of moving from being a single artist / designer and transforming into a BRAND. I share my personal journey with you so you can see the transformation i experienced. My hope is that by sharing my experience, you too can experience the exciting benefits of creating your own product line.

I look forward to you joining my course and please feel free to ask me any questions! Also I love reviews!

Melanie

Transcripts

1. Trailer: Top 10 Reasons Freelancers should create your own product line: Hi, guys. My name is Melanie Greenwood, and I'm the founder and designer here, Vision City Studios. In this course I want to talk to you about my top 10 reasons that I believe that all freelancers should consider creating their own product line as a graphic designer, illustrator and freelancer myself. I can only tell you that by creating my own product line a few years ago, things have really picked up in a great way. In my business, I've had a variety of new contacts, new clientele. I've had wonderful opportunities in art shows and licensing deals, and the list goes on. The benefits of creating your old product line are endless. However, I want to highlight my top 10 reasons because I think a lot of people don't realize the value and the benefits of creating your own product line business. Maybe you're a illustrator, a graphic designer ahead. Lederer and you are working on jobs one at a time. That's the way I worked for a long time. I've really enjoyed it yet. When I decided to launch my own product line, it was as though I multiplied my efforts no longer was one job being sold once with products and product based businesses. One product in one art piece or illustration would sell over and over and over again. In this course, I'm gonna share with you my personal journey as well as my top 10 reasons why I believe that lunch year old product line will benefit you as well. So I hope you'll join me in this course. I look forward to walking through this process with you to develop your product line and encourage you to go for it and take the plunge. 2. How I got started selling products : Hi, guys. Welcome to the class. I'm so glad you decided to join me. I'm really excited about what this course is going to do for your freelance business, because it's really gonna kick things up and take things to the next level by introducing products. Products really, really, really changed the game. They have for me anyway. And I really wanted to take a few minutes really quickly and just share a bit of my story. The reason why I do this is because I think by putting the whole concept of products into a story, it puts it all into context. And that way you can kind of relate. And how Imagine how this can actually relate to your own life. Your own story, your own journey in my life actually began working in design. A za freelancer. I was working on a Friday different places first for a while, but I I found that my best form of design it was really working for myself, which I love. And I began working as a freelancer working on music related packaging, promotional materials, the entertainment industry, the wine and spirits industry. He's the kind of industries I found myself working in what it came to graphic design and illustration, and I developed a variety of clients. Some of them are corporate. Some of them are bands and rock artists. But this is the kind of stuff I began to work in when I was doing my freelance design. I did that for many years. I also modeled by day. I worked as a fashion model for many years, so I kind of balanced all these things. And it was kind of great because I was able to be a freelancer and work from anywhere. So if I was traveling as ableto work, if I was at home, it was all kind of awesome. So it just worked out really well for my lifestyle. However, I came to the point in my life where I really wanted to find my voice even more as an artist and really narrow my niece and really begin to focus more and more on one style. I actually have another course. One of my best courses on skill share is actually about how to find your needs style. So if that's something interests you check that out. Ah, little plug there. But anyway, I just wanted to find out who I was. As an artist, I really want to narrow my focus. And so I decided to launch 12 art prints on etc. Now, etc. Is like one my favorite things I love, etc. If you haven't checked out etc. Yet, um, you should do because it's an amazing place for artists like us illustrators, crafters hand letters to really get noticed in a really noisy world. And so I wanted to just kind of try my hand at art prints. Now, as I did that, what ended up happening was a whole bunch of amazing things happened. I got noticed right away, and I got featured on something called fab dot com, which at the time was doing flash sales. So I suddenly went from not having anybody know who I was to. Suddenly having thousands of people buying my art products online on Fab Now Fab has obviously changed. If you look that up now, it's changed its format. Um, now I believe it's selling more like based on seasons, so you have to kind of do like the traditional go in and have a buyer. Look at your stuff and things like that. But at the time it was as though I went from just working for one client at a time to then being presented to buyers, whether they were store buyers or whether they were customer buyers. But immediately is like I went from, you know, working on one planet, time to working in front of a ton of people. And so this immediately kick started my whole business into having a product line that was successful. After that, I actually got asked to do a licensing deal with a brilliant, amazing company called Land of Nod, which is the Children's retailer in America. And so that was another amazing thing that happened where I actually had some of my art prints. They were converted into canvases for their customers in their shop. Um, and it was an amazing experience, and I really, really loved it. It really opened my eyes to the concept of selling into stores and really growing in that way. As a result of that, I continue to sell on Etsy, and I could continue to have fab sales. I continue to look for new licensing opportunities, but as a result of that, I actually got more and more into the idea of wholesale where I began to sell my art products into wholesale. So as you can see, one small decision really trickled on into the next several decisions and next several opportunities. And so that's why I'm so excited about this course, because when you take one step, it leads to the next, at least the next, at least the next. So you're taking one step by taking this course to find out about how to create product line and also the benefits of doing a product line. But I really believe that this is a really cool part of your journey because you don't really know what's on the other side of you stepping out. And that's why I want to really encourage you to really buckle in and to really listen and really take in the next 10 10 things I'm going to share with you because these next 10 benefits could actually be life changing for some of you. For me, it actually enabled me to be home with my daughter a lot more. It enabled me to have freedom of lifestyle to work when I want to set my own schedule to work anywhere I want. Like, for example, my husband, I we might go and travel and be like, literally in California. He might be surfing on the beach, and I'm literally just creating literally on the beach, and that's really fun. That's a really cool benefit. Um, I could be in a cafe somewhere developing new ideas, developing new products. I could be meeting with a friend who's also designer in the middle of the day, who is also a freelancer and is also developing products. And this is the kind of lifestyle that I've really wanted. And so some of you you might be kind of wondering, How do people do that? How do people kind of quit their day job and go off and have this kind of freedom of lifestyle and be creative Now? These are some of the ways you can do that. I'm not telling you to quit your day job yet, but I do want occurs you that it is possible for you to live the lifestyle you want to live and to have a product line that actually really represents you as a brand because that's the beauty of doing this is you're not just becoming an artist or a designer, which is great. I love being an artist and I'm a designer, so I get that. But what you're doing is you're actually stepping into a different realm and you're actually becoming a brand. And that's really the power of creating a product line is that you are no longer just being associated as a one person illustrator, designer hand letter. But you're actually a brand that you're representing, and you are the forefront of that brand. And you're the creative mind behind that brand. And so so many opportunities just opened up to you. And those are the opportunity I'm going to share with you in the next sections. So buckle in and maybe get a note pad in a piece of paper pen just to get some notes going . Because as I'm talking in these next 10 sections, I really believe that your mind is going to start really turning and getting really great ideas. I want you to make sure right those ideas down, and at the end of the course, I'm gonna give you a special challenge, but I want you to share with us in the project section. So join me in the next section and let's get started 3. Reason 1: It will cause you to find your Niche Style: reason number one as to why I believe that all freelancers and designers should create their own product line. Is this. By creating your own product line, you will be forced to find your niche and to stick to it Now in my life. One of the number one challenge is that I had was to really focus now as an artist. A lot of times we are so creative and so inspired and working with different people, different clients, different friends, doing Kal Abs, doing all kinds of different things. That and a lot of times were also multifaceted. So we might be really great in photography. You might be really great. Watercolor would be really great in a variety of things. However, what happens is we end up doing a bit of everything and not really doing one thing great. And by creating your own product line. The first reason that I would have you to think about creating your product line is that you will be forced more than ever before to find your voice and to find your niche in my life. This was honestly one of the number one things that really affected me positively as a designer and as an artist was because I had to find my niche. One of my favorite designers is a brilliant designer in Seattle, Washington, and he has his own studio where he works on an amazing slew of wonderful, wonderful projects that I'm always inspired by. And I saw him interviewed in a online blob kind of setting and one of the questions that they posed to him. Waas. What is the one thing that you would inspire other designers, artists to follow in? What's the one thing that you would say to them? And he said in one sentence, Find your niche. Art is vast, and I'm paraphrasing his answer, but that's basically the gist of it. It's so true that if you don't have a niche market or a niece style, what happens is you become everything to everyone. Although it can be a strength to be creative and to have a variety of styles, it can also be a distraction. And so, by finding the niche style you wanna work in and then creating an entire product line based on that style, what you will be doing is doing yourself a huge favor by creating your own visual identity in your own visual voice. Now some of you are wondering what do I mean by creating my own product line? So say you're in a graphic designer and you're really, really great at offering stationary design for, say, invitations, wedding invitations, greeting car cards or basically greetings. Like, say, somebody has a baptism or they have a, um, you know, a newborn baby they won't announce or things like that. So say you do this for people anyway, Maybe this is, ah, part of your business. You are a stationery designer and you are offering this to people. Anyway, What I'm suggesting is that you actually create your own line of invitations. Announcement cards, greetings. Thank you cards, things like that by creating your own line as well. And now this could be something you do on the side. Ah, what you do is you open up your up yourself to a whole another slew of opportunity and income. So, in the case of finding your niche within this style, what you're going to do is you're going to really narrow yourself and say, What is the one style I want to stick with So instead of having a client come to you on one day asking for, you know, really dramatic black and white and another another day somebody's coming Teoh another clients asking for water, color and soft tones and hand lettered Um, you know, beautiful pieces instead of having yourself be split into all these different directions. What I'm asking you to do is to narrow your niche. Focus. Decide on the one style you want to stick with for your entire line of stationary. So now this is the way that you are going to develop your own voice and your own brand. So this is why branding is so important. So when you're creating your own brand, your your brand is not just a logo and a name and website. Your brand is the look, the texture, the color tones, the overall feel of your products and how they work together. So these are the things that you might want to be thinking about as you are narrowing Ornish and working towards one voice and one look. So this is one of the ways I believe that it's one of the benefits of creating on product line, because otherwise you may not really be forced to think of one style one each. This was a huge help to me. To really find my niche was that I knew that it wasn't a create products. They should kind of relate to each other. So this is my number. One reason why I really believe that all freelancers should create their own product line because you will have to create one nation and one voice. 4. Reason 2: Loyal Customer Following: Hi, guys. Welcome back. This is now Reason number Two. As to why, I would suggest that you create your own product line. Reason Number two is simple. By creating your own product line, you are going to develop a loyal customer following by working as a freelancer, maybe our graphic designer and illustrator. A hand Lederer. You may have a client following You may have people talking about your work, which is always great. You always want to have a buzz going. You always want everybody that you work with to be really happy with your works that they continue to talk about. You refer you and just kind of share what you've worked on for them with their colleagues or family and their friends. However, by launching into your own products what you will do as you begin to build your own, as I call it art fans. Now, art fans are amazing When somebody really loves your style and your products, they will continue to buy your products every single time you put something out. I've seen this time and time again. I've done art shows, which I'll talk about later in this course, but I don't art shows and had the same people come out to my booth, even if they have to drive, which is actually really amazing and humbling that they would even do that. But I've had it happen a lot of times, and it's such an amazing experience to be writing orders and seeing a lot of the same names as I'm writing orders to people and filling in their addresses on at home. As I said up products because these air my loyal customer base, these are people who are art fans of what I make. I've had people say to me things like, Wow, I love everything you make like when you putting out some new stuff and it actually pulls on me as an artist to create more. And so this is my second reason as to why I would have you considered to create your own product line, because this is the kind of stuff that can't really happen or it's never easy to happen anyway. When you are working on one project at a time for clients now, I don't know about you. I love working for clients and I still do. I still offer design illustration I still do logo branding all kinds of different work. However, by creating my own product line, I feel like it's route really grown this overall following of my work. And I really want that for you as well. This is something that could really benefit you, because by having a great customer following who is loyal to you and who really loves your work, it will only encourage you as an artist to create more. It's kind of like having an accountability when you know somebody is depending on you. When you know somebody wants to see more from you. It's a lot easier to create when there's nobody there and maybe you're waiting on your next client and you're hoping something comes in which, as we as freelancers, we know that feeling cause sometimes have to kind of be in between projects, and that's a bit of a uncomfortable feeling, right? But by having your own customer following, you could be having all these sales happening on a regular basis. That just kind of fuels you on. It keeps you on your edge of your toes. It keeps you fresh creatively. It'll also just inspire ah lot of just self challenge as an artist so that you are constantly coming up with new ideas and ways to really excite this group of people who are following your art. So that is my second reason as to why you may want to consider your own product line is that you'll be creating your own loyal customer following. 5. Reason 3 : Make Money While You Sleep: my third reason as to why you may want to consider to create your own product line is this . When you have your own product line, you are able to literally make money while you sleep. I am such a huge believer in income that is passive. I really believe that passive income is the way of the future, especially for those of you who step into this next realm of products. Making money while you sleep is a really thing. I can't even tell you how cool it is when I'm out with my daughter at a playground and I get an order on my phone. I can't even tell you how cool it is when I'm on a date with my husband and I get a little notification that says you have a wholesale order. Ah, or even better when I have a notification that comes in and says, You just sold a digital product. Digital products are amazing, which I'll talk to you about later in this course. So all of these things are ways that I'm making an income while I'm not working, and that, for me, is the life cell I would love to develop more of because I want to spend as much time with my family. I want to spend as much time with my friends as much time looking after my myself, health wise, maybe working out having the lifestyle that I wanna have. I really want to spend as much time, you know, being creative in other ways and not necessarily being having my time be connected to my income. Now that's the whole shift that I want you to really here. In this reason, Number three is that when you have products, you are going to make money while you're not working. Now I say make money while you're sleeping, which is actually very true because I've had orders coming overnight all the time. But what I really mean is it's passive. It is not necessarily something that you have to go bang on the door for. You don't have to make a phone call for you don't necessarily have to do a design service for now. You can also be doing design, service and illustration service for your clients at the same time, which is also really cool. I do that all the time. I might be working on a project, so I know I'm going pay that day for that project. However, I'm also getting product sales during the day. So it's like I'm working on a project and I'm also having the side income coming in behind the scenes that I didn't have to really work much more for because it's already created. The beauty of products is that you create them once and they sell over and over and over again. And that is what I want you to take away from this reason Number Three, that when you have a product line, you will be making money while you sleep. Hi, guys. I wanted to be sure to do another quick bonus video for you guys to really show you the potential of digital products as well. From the majority of my course, I've been talking about physical products that you can create, but I want to be sure to talk about digital A swell. So, for example, one of the ways you could sell digital products of your artwork or your creative work is in the area of digital printable files. Ah, this is my Etsy page where I actually sell both physical prints as well as digital principles. So what you could do is I'll click on one of mine. This is no, but by no means a plug for my own stuff. I'm just showing you an example. What that you can do is you can actually upload art to etc. For example, on there's a variety of other companies that offer this, Um, I think even Amazon is also offering it a swell where you can actually upload a product or a downloadable print. This could be a say stationary that's gonna be able to do less design. This could be a calendar. This could be a variety of different art related products that are digital. You could even have ah, digital informational product related to your art. So maybe it's a how to r a D I y, um, inspired kind of idea where you can actually have it as a downloadable thing. So, people, actually, they it's called an instant download so people can actually purchase this, go to the cart and purchase this right here. I'm gonna pretend I'm gonna buy this. Oops. I can't buy my own product, obviously. Okay, So for the example, I'm trying to offer you this is obviously I would be able to walk through it because my own store, but people can actually go on and purchase your printable products. And the beauty of this as a product is that you don't have to ship anything. So after somebody purchases from you as a digital product, all they have to do is go ahead and download it and it goes right to the email address and you get paid. So again, this is another really great way of having, Ah, passive income. I get several of these a week, Sometimes a day. It depends on the week. Or maybe if it's a different season like Christmas season's been pretty busy for me. So this is a great way to just have generated income while you sleep like how I spoke about earlier in the course, and this might be a really great solution for the to those of you who have limited time. So maybe you're create honestly, you can create like 100 digital products if you want it, and just promote them the way you normally would on social media are over. Ah, variety of different ways of promotion to be over an email list and you could be generating a side income basically in while you sleep. So it's nothing that you have to actually ship out. And this is a really great solution for those of you who are super busy and who just kind of want to dabble in the idea of creating products without investing any money or any, Um, ah, you know, shipping time and all that kind of thing. The only thing that you would be investing in this case would be the time to set it up, which I think is actually really worth it. And I think people are really catching on to the printable market and really going for it. So I want to show that to you as an example, and I hope that really helps you guys as well. 6. Reason 4: Build Relationships with Licensing Companies: my fourth reason for encouraging you to create your own product line is this. By creating your own product line, you'll give yourself the opportunity to develop relationships with licensing companies licensing companies. What they do is they work with artists to present your artwork to a variety of different companies and retailers, for example, who want to use your artwork on their products. So, for example, say you are an illustrator and you have created a series of textile designs that are going to be used in a variety of different textiles that you're working with, and you have a licensing opportunity to have those designs applied to, say, a variety of other products. So maybe they're going to be placed on backpacks and on, ah, sweaters and on, you know, Children's T shirts, things like that, or even on fabrics that are going to be used within a home. Um, you know, there's a lot of different companies that do that to say there's an illustrator that's basically having their artwork featured in a line of products that are going to be licensed within a retail chain. Now, the beauty of licensing is that you actually basically they're paying you a royalty to use your illustration, your design, your him lettering or whatever it may be. They want to use it throughout their store line north within their season. For example, this is what happened to me. Actually, when I was working with Land of Nod Children Store in America, what happened was I was approached by a licensing company who saw my art. They actually saw my art prints at an event, and they later contacted me and they said, Hey, we re like your style. We want to know if we can present your art to a variety of different retailers that our national retailers and we want to know if that's okay if we could do that So they had to. I'd actually signed a contract with them that I was allowing them to represent me. It's kind of like an agent in a way. And so they actually presented my artwork to several different companies, like I, Kia and, um, you know, different, you know, huge Reese retailer. So I was like, Wow, this is great. And so they came back and they said, Hey, somebody is really interested in working with you and using some of your pieces. Um, the company's called land of Not I didn't even know who laid a nod wasn't the time I'm a Toronto girl from Canada. So honestly, we don't have land of not up here. And so I didn't know who they were at the time, so I researched them. It turns out there like a, um, another kind of related company to Creighton Barrel. So I was like, Oh, cool. I would love to work with them. And so they sent me a contract to have me sign that I can have some of my art pieces converted into canvases for Children, store Children's rooms. And I thought, Oh, my gosh, this is amazing. I love this. So I had the opportunity. I was able to sell a variety of products. They have, you know, you know, a large amount of stores across America, so it was a really amazing opportunity. This is the kind of stuff that can happen as a result of you creating your brand. Now, if I didn't have a brand meaning products, if I just was a designer, that just had a bunch of artists related work that I created for other clients. I don't believe this would have been possible. The reason why is because I would not have done Number one, which is a reason number one, which is I would not have narrowed Manish enough to have created a brand now by presenting aced like a selection of products that relate to each other, if that's the way to create a brand, and if I hadn't done that initially, I don't think I would have had the opportunity with Land of Nod Now. So say, for example, you might be wondering, How does this really come into play in your own life? So say you are an illustrator and you create, you know, a beautiful You have a thana, beautiful illustrations near sketchbook that maybe you present to your clients. As for future work, Now what I want encourage you to do is actually to create take some of those illustrations , actually create a line that you may be sell. Maybe you have them screen printed on fabric. Maybe they are canvassed. Maybe they are etched into wood. That's a really big thing right now, people are really into the natural beauty and kind of the ICO friendly products. So you may want to do something like that, Maybe have it, like, etched into bamboo or something like that. Create us like a whole selection of beautiful products so that people don't. We see you as an artist and as a designer, but they see you as a brand, and then people get their business hats on and they actually start to send you contracts. So I'm not even kidding. People think I'm like, you know, exaggerating when I say this stuff. But this actually happened to me, and I've really seen a huge benefit of it. So now what happens? I get these really great world royalty checks come in the mail that are a pleasant surprise because I don't know, we see what's happening, but I'll get a check in the mail. And it'll say you've sold this many, um, canvases through this retailer. And here's your royalty payment now Royalties air beautiful, because again, it's like money while I sleep right. And I know about you. But the more I can make while I'm not working is is better, right? Like, why would we wanna work every day and then only get paid for that day. I believe in working once and getting paid many times. Now, if you're with me that I encourage you to go on to the next section as I'm gonna go into several more ways on reasons why I would encourage you to create your own line of products . 7. Reason 5: Art Shows, Trade Shows and Live Appearances: my fifth reason as to why I believe you should create your own product line is this. You'll have the opportunity to do art shows, live appearances and trade shows. Before I had my own product line, I had no real reason to be at a trade show to be in an art show, a craft fair or live appearances in stores because I didn't have anything to sell. Now that's the beauty of creating your own product line is that you now are no longer just a designer illustrator hand letter. You're not just one entity of one person. You are a brand, so you can actually sign up and go to great trade shows. Goto art shows, craft fairs. I had the opportunity to start doing these in L. A. When I was living in Los Angeles, and it was an amazing experience because, first of all, the number one thing that I loved about doing these art shows and trade shows was that I got to meet so many other creative people who also are there who are also selling their products who are also having their brand being developed. And so I got to get new relationships with really, really amazing people. Now as artists, sometimes we can be a bit of like a lone Ranger, right? Maybe we're working on her own, working in our own studio, and we only are. You know, the only interaction might have with people a lot of times is maybe if you have, like a partner that you're working with or if you're working with the clients, So that's maybe the only interaction. But by surrounding yourself with a community of like minded artists and people who are also selling their products and really growing their brands, you're going to get so much information, your email to rub shoulders with people. You're gonna be able to develop conversations and really find out, you know, how did other people do it? What is their tips and tricks? What are some of the ways that they learned to develop their brand and what can I learn from that? And they will just give you information. They will put you to websites. They will teach you how to do things like, you know, sack your PayPal account, or how Teoh use the square reader, you know, like a whole bunch of things like that, like little things that you and I might just think. Oh, yeah, Like I could just figure that out myself. But when you sort of surround yourself with other people and find out their story and find out how they made it because you're gonna find people that are gonna be just as justice talents is you are. And honestly, you might even be more talented than some of the people that you mean. But you're gonna find out. Wait, they're doing amazing. How did they do that? How did they just develop this huge brand? And just by having conversations, you know, grab a coffee with these people, find out who they are, find out their story. You read up about their website of on their, um on their bio on the website and really find out you know, more information about this, and I find this was one of the number one things I loved about doing art shows was the interaction I got with other artists because I came in and I was kind of the new person in the art print world where I was when I came into these, you know, huge, really cool, artistic high, you know, high end and, like, hipster really cool art shows in Los Angeles. I remember feeling a little bit intimidated. I went to my 1st 1 However, when I went in there, I felt like all the art print people, which is what I was selling. They came around to me. They wanted to know who I waas when I come from, you know, what kind of style do you do? And they actually really kind of came around me and really surrounded me and really made me feel really great. Encouraged. They told me a bit of their story, how they started out some of the mistakes that they made. And these are the kind of things that make you realize, Hey, this is possible. And if they made mistakes and they had, you know, challenges along the way and now look at who they are. They've got a huge brand. They've got a line up around the corner, but people, they're trying to buy their products. And a lot of times I was I would be trying to just go into there, booth, just just to kind of find out what kind of products that they sold and what kind of art prints that they sold that I was like, Wow, I can't even get into this booth right now because there's so many people here in line trying to just talk to them and meet them and get a photo with them and stuff like that. And I was just so inspired. I was so amazed and so like, challenge that. Wow, this is possible. I can really create a voice from my own brand and not just be a designer working on one project a time, but I can actually become a Nen Sparacio Nall brand, which is actually what I do now, whereas all of my products have the one thing that all of my products have is, they all have an inspired kind of voice behind them where I'm saying, you know, presenting messages and illustrations that are happy, they're uplifting, that are lighthearted, and that's kind of my brain, and that's what I want to do. And, um, this is kind of one of the reasons that I want to encourage you to consider your own product line is that by going to these shows, thes trade shows these events, you'll really develop a community of artists that you will not otherwise have. So again, I encourage you to think about it and to maybe consider launching your own products. 8. Reason 6: Features on Blogs and Media: my sixth reason as to why you may want to create your own product line is that this will give you an opportunity to be featured on blog's and media. Nowadays, Blog's and media are really the number one way for people to get messages out to share products to be inspired. Blobs and media are followed by millions of people, and this is a great, great way to really get your message out as an artist because you're not just an artist, an illustrator, a hand letter. You are a person that has a message. We all have messages and things that we want to communicate. Maybe they're in humor. Maybe they are about social justice. Maybe they're just words that we really want to inspire people with. But there's always a message behind everything. So as an artist, I think one of the ways that you may want to be featured on a blogger or on media is to really identify what is your message like, Maybe you have something that's really important to you that you want to share with the world in my personal journey. My message is really about the idea of being light hearted my first print I ever launched was it had the words lighten up. And to this day it's so my number one selling print. And I think it's because it's really the heart of my entire brand is to be lighthearted, to not take life so seriously. And so that's my message that I want to get out. But maybe you have a different message that you want to kind of multiply and create a platform for that message now being featured on blog's and in different forms of media, maybe on other people's social media. Maybe on TV, you're going interviewed. Maybe you are, um, you know, basically being involved in some sort of presentation. Maybe you're hosting an event. You know, things like this. This gives you opportunities to really have your voice be heard. As an artist, I personally had an opportunity recently to actually be photographed in a look book for a fashion story, which was amazing, and it was actually for a jewelry line. And this jewelry line is also they. A lot of their proceeds go towards humanitarian organizations in Africa that I think are brilliant and amazing, And so, by having a product line. They actually contacted me to be one of the kind of models, so to speak, for this look book. But it wasn't really about being a model. It was about being a brand that was being featured. And so there was a couple other bloggers who were featured in this look book, and we all had our own messages. We all had our own stories, and they actually wanted us to share, like are like motto and life, things like that. And so I actually got the opportunity to be featured in that, um, and if you want, look it up, it's called Shot for joy. You so joy you spelled J. A y. You you want to check it out, give a little shout out to that company. I love them, so that's a great example as to how your brand can be featured. So maybe there's a blawg that kind of relates to the message that you already say So. In my case, my message is always about being light hearted, being, you know, happy having a lighthearted spin on life and so inspirational blog's or blobs that are about, you know, really bright black and white kind of interior design, very, you know, kind of minimalistic and happy kind of tones and kind like I Kia and, like, really, you know, modern kind of look, Those kind of blog's may kind of reach out to me and actually have me featured on their blog's so that it's like our messages can work together. So say, Ah, bloggers message really correlates with your message and your overall look and feel. Maybe it's a blawg that's all about being eco friendly and respecting the environment, and your products are also that way. So that's a great kind of marrying of the two of you together. And so a lot of times bloggers, they want to find content. They want to find everything's to talk about. And so you might be the highlighted person in this blog's for that week or that month, and this is a wonderful opportunity to get more exposure as an artist. So I would really want to encourage you to check that out and to really consider that even look ups and blog's and see what other people are talking about. See who else is being featured on blog's on media, maybe on social media like some middle C on Instagram, where on artists will, like, take over another account. So they'll say, Hey, I'm doing a takeover today of this account and I'm gonna share it with you my top five, you know, models and life about our or whatever it might be. And that's a great way to just get exposure. And so would encourage you that as you get your products developed and get them out there into the world, you're actually expanding your reach. You're expanding your message, and you're going to get featured in a variety of different blog's and media. 9. Reason 7: Wholesale Opportunities: my seventh reason as to why you may want to consider to create your own product line is that you'll have the opportunity to sell your products into major retail chains or into local specialized boutiques. I really believe that selling wholesale products is an amazing way to multiplayer voice multiplier income and also get your products in front of so many more people because you're actually getting your products in front of other people's customers. So it's basically like you're partnering with retailers who also kind of have the same message that you have in the same overall voice in the same overall style and your products air kind of becoming married in with their store, where they can actually sell your products to their customers. This is an amazing way to develop way more income, because when you get a wholesale order, it's different than getting, you know, just one job. So say, if you're a designer, you're getting one job at a time. You get paid once, and that's it. And that job's over often times with retailers. What will happen is you'll develop a relationship so you will not just sell them the product once but you will actually sell them many products and you'll sell them to them over and over again, especially if you're selling really well in their shop. Now say you sell about, you know, $300 worth of products into a retailer, and within a couple of months they come back to you and they say, Hey, those all sold or we're about 75% sold. I'd like to order some more from you because they're doing really well. So those same products, maybe those five or six designs or whatever it might be, have been sold to that retailer several times over. And within that one transaction, you can actually multiply the impact of each design because they're being sold not only to the retailer but to the retailer's customers. So as you can see, this, a beautiful kind of, um effect that happens as you get into wholesale wholesale is a real game changer. In fact, I did an entire course man wholesale because I really think that it's something that's not connected to enough by designers, and right now is honestly, I think, the best time in history to really get your products into wholesale because Now there's a huge movement happening where people want to buy a local art. They want to buy local products, and this has never happened. I mean, especially in recent history. Anyway, it definitely happened, you know, generations ago, obviously. But in our generation, I feel like there's a real wave of this happening right now that you may want to get in on because people want to buy things that you know, artists. And, you know, creative crafters and things like that have created within their town within their province , within their state and things like that. There's a real thing right now with, say, like local love, they call it or like local pride, like they're just being proud you're from Austin or you're from Toronto or whatever it might be and really buying from people who are also from Austin or from Toronto or from L. A. Or wherever it might be. So this is something that you really want to tap into, and I encourage you to check this out and to consider to create your own products that you , too, can sell wholesale 10. Reason 8: Recognized in your Industry: my eighth reason why you may want to consider to sell your own product line is that as you are working and as you're developing your brand, what will happen naturally is that your work and your products will proceed You so that when you are out at a party, what will happen is people will actually recognize you as an artist, and they will actually say things like, Oh, your vision city, which is actually my brand name. So the Eurovision City, you're the one who does all those, you know, black and white prints and I'll say, Yeah, that's me. And it's a great way to get recognized in your industry. So say you want to get more connected in the local art community that you're a part of or you want to really grow your brand and your name as an artist. This is a really great way to do. That is because you will have your like I said, your products will proceed. You, your products will be found out in the market or that they will be found by people. Say somebody comes over to your house or to someone's house, and they say, Hey, was that art piece on your wall? Oh, that's from this girl named Melanie who creates these products, whatever might be. So as you are kind of putting out products you were actually getting, your name recognizes an artist, and it's a great way to get referrals to, because you are being recognized by your industry. And this is a great thing that people don't really realize is that your industry needs to know who you are. So don't think of yourself just as a Lone Ranger anymore. Think of yourself as part of a way bigger community because that's the reality, right? We're not really on her own. Everything we do in some way is affecting people. It's we're kind of working alongside of other artists. Whether we know them or not. We are. We're in the same industry as other artists, so it's great way to get connected to them, because by having these products you will be of the show's. Hopefully, you will be in stores. Hopefully, and so your products will become found is my point on day will become recognized and then you, as an artist, will become recognized. So this is a wonderful way to, um, expand your connection with other artists as well as your referrals. Because as people pick up pieces that you've created and maybe proxy you've created, what they're gonna say is Oh, wow, this is really beautiful. Um, I wonder if she would actually do another design job for me accustomed design job that's happened to me and more times than I can count. People actually contact me as a designer. They will say, Well, I really love your art art prints or the greeting card that I got in the mail or whatever might be. Can you create something similar to that? And from that I will say absolutely, I can. And, um, from then we can actually move on into the rest of project. So by creating your own product line, you will be really expanding a reach and really being connected to other people in your industry. 11. Reason 9: Multiply your Time: reason Number nine as to why you may want to create your own product line is very simple. By creating your own product line, you will actually multiply your time. Now. I've kind of touched on this in a few other areas of the course, but I really wanted to take a point and ah, moment in this course to really kind of paint the picture of what that looks like. This is actually amazing for people like Mom's or people who have limited time schedule. So say you want to develop something on the side or you want to develop a side and come for your family while being so focused on your family. This is an amazing thing, because by creating products, you are getting sales over and over and over again. Like I said while you sleep. So the point I want to focus on in this video is about your time. Like for example, when I had my daughter, I was working for a variety of different clients, ongoing design clients and things like that, and I had to actually stop working on certain things during, you know, obviously having a baby and the first few months of having a baby is obviously as every woman knows, it's kind of nuts, right? So your first baby, However, even though I had to stop doing design work for a few, my clients and I didn't stop for very long. I was able to get back into it fairly quickly. But I, um I found it was so cool because even though I wasn't working technically for clients, I was still getting sales on my products. So every once in a while, I'd go to the mail post office, and I would ship out products with little, you know, daughter in tow. But that was really it. So the rest of my time, I was able to focus on my daughter. I was a freelancer, so I didn't have, like, maternity leave, race like that. And so obviously I didn't want to stop all income, right? But I definitely had my product sales generating income while I was going through this transition of becoming a mom. So maybe some of you are in a position like that where you know you have Children and you know, you're only getting less and less time to yourself because our toe work because you have kids. And I find, um I only have one daughter, but I find that my all my friends have multiple Children. They say you just have less and less time. That's just the reality. Maybe you're in a position where you just want to have side income, and you want more money to come in with not as much time effort when it comes to adding more time. Your schedule. This is a really great thing to do because you can always set it up so that maybe you only ship once a week so you could have, you know, on your on Thursdays is when you go to the post office and you just gather all your products all week that you get sold. Um, and you have the packaged and ready to ship on Thursdays. So again, you can make all the rules. You don't have to be like running around every day trying to your order's ready. Things like that. You can just have it on your store, maybe the online store, maybe its on Etsy or whatever it might be, Um, and you just make it known to your customers I ship on Thursdays. And so again, this is all about time and time management and time earning, I guess you could say, because why earned money based on time when you could just have that income come in and really have the freedom of lifestyle. So this this number nine is really all about having the opportunity to expand your income with limited time. So again, this is just another reason why I would encourage you to consider to create your own product line. 12. Reason 10: Give to a Charity you care about: last but not least, my 10th and final reason as to why I would encourage you to consider to create your own product line is that you can also give part of your proceeds to a charity that you value. Maybe there's a charity or humanitarian organization that you really love and that really lines up with a message of your brand that you want to build and the products that you're creating. Maybe this is a brand that would really marry well with your own personal vision, your own personal ethics, your own personal view of the world, things that are really important to you. Maybe it's a Children's charity that you really want to be able to give towards, and maybe you're actually creating the products with the sole reason of providing the proceeds for this charity. You could always donate all of the proceeds. If you like, you could also donate a percentage. You could do it really whatever you want. There's a variety of really great brands out there that donates ah percentage of their proceeds to an organization that is creating an opportunity for group people in a different part of the world. Or maybe It's a local amazing organization or a ah, home for maybe troubled youth or or just something that is really important to you. Maybe it's an educational organization. Maybe it's an art organization that you want to be a part of. Maybe it's something to do with, you know, theater or just the performing arts or something that you just personally care about that you want to support. I want to give you that as my last and final incentive, or I guess, inspiration to maybe create your own products because you're a creative individual. And I really believe that through creativity we can create resources. We can create opportunities. We can create help towards things that we care about. So why not marry those two things together? Maybe you have a passion for, you know, ending animal cruelty, or you know something along those lines. That's something that, really, or maybe it's an environmental program that you really want to be part of, and these are things that really matter to you As an artist. I believe that by connecting our why, which is what I'm talking about, the real why behind why we're doing what we're doing to something that we care about. I think that that really energizes us. His artists. I think it really broadens our perspective of the world. I think it really challenges us to create with a purpose. And so that's really why I would encourage you to consider to create your own products. Because maybe it's not just about creating aside and come. Maybe it's not just about, um, the the, you know, energy and the inspiration of putting out your own products and having people become art fans and and all the other things I have spoken of in this course, maybe the entire thing for you is actually you want to give to something that matters. And I really want to encourage you to maybe think about that, because I personally I have things that I give towards the I that matter to me and my husband and I want to continue to do that, and I want to continue to sow into that. So I want to encourage you to create products that are already based on things that you're already working on and creating in order to give to the things that matter to you. 13. Final thoughts and Project: Hi, guys. I want to thank you again for taking my course on my 10 reasons as to why I believe that you should create your own product line if you are a freelancer, and I hope that this course has really inspired you. I hope it's really kind of gotten the wheels turning and really created a new way of thinking about how maybe you can create your own products, not just be designing for other people or illustrated for other people. I really want you to go through the 10 reasons again and really take your time and go through them, and I challenge you to really maybe write down some notes to yourself. Give us Make this a time of reflection for yourself as well as a time of dreaming because what could happen if you created your own products? I want you to really think about that. I want you to imagine that, and I would love for you to write that down and actually share it with us in the project section. What would it look like if you created your own product line? What kind of products would they be, and how would they benefit other people. Maybe with a benefit your family with a ballot benefit, a charity. You know, I want you to go through this course and really just jot down some notes and share those notes with us. Share those dreams with us, if you would in the project section. And I really look forward to hearing about all your ideas and your concepts and ways that you can really create a product based business as well as a service based business you already have. So I encourage you guys. I believe in you. I really believe that now is the best time in history to do this. It's never been a better time has never been more platforms to sell on. Um, and I would encourage you to go for it to really create your products and to share them with us.