I feel the pain as do many designers. There are constant requests to do projects without pay. Along with the requests come all kinds of reasons (excuses?) why this particular job should be done for free. Of course artists will sometimes use their creativity for an awesome response.
A Sainsbury supermarket recently ran an ad in the Camden New Journal (Camden is a borough of London, England) where they were looking to find an artist to volunteer their skills. A copy of the ad is shown below.
We are not talking about a small business here, just one that will gladly take anyone (with or without experience) to work for free. What do designers often want? Free food! So designer Teri Anne Scoble responded with a nice tongue-in-cheek ad looking for a supermarket willing to volunteer their skills.
Great response and it definitely got a big chuckle out of me!
In that spirit, I created a graphic a while back explaining why I don’t work for free. Maybe you are the exception, but many readers request my help and it is rare that the desperate plea for help comes with payment.
If you would like my help, I am absolutely thrilled to help you. But first you need to Hire the Geek as I don’t work for free.
Enjoyable post! Always fun to see how people “sell” through words. In a similar vein, another common situation is clients asking for a great deal NOW, predicated on the idea that they’ll be bringing so much work to us in the future. Or that due to their influence, they have lots of friends that will be coming to me for business. I impart that we’ll look at a discount when a sales history has been established that warrants negotiation.
It’s usually euphemistically called an “internship” where you work for free and gain useful “experience” to possibly apply to a future, perhaps paying, job. Often that job never appears. It’s the bane of western Europe with thousands of formerly unpaid volunteers still having found no actual paid work. At one time it was called indentured labour or maybe even slavery.
A lesson I took to heart many years ago when first starting out. Along with getting a substantial deposit and insisting on timely payment, like Ã¢â‚¬Ëœon deliveryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ – unless itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a well-established client I know I can trust. If you donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t value your time & talent, others wonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t either. Conduct business as though youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re serious, and learn to recognize a scam. Ads like the example arenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t worth wasting any time on.