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What do you think? - Suffering From Elation
A Survivor's Tale
tania
tania
What do you think?
I finished my freelance job!! All that's left to do is organise payment! (Before the freelancers among you keel over in alarm, you should know that this client is one I've worked with for years and he's ALWAYS good for payment, so these days I allow him to pay when the work is complete - though he only gets a low-res version of the image until the payment lands in my account. That's just commonsense.)

I'm in a bit of a conundrum though. The client loves my work and wants to continue working with me. He pays well and the jobs are all in my 'default' style, which makes them quite easy. And, well... he's offered me a shitload more work. Thousands of dollars worth. Thousands of US dollars worth, which gains an additional 50% or so in value when converted to Australian dollars.

I'm trying to save up a house deposit. It'd almost be irresponsible NOT to take on the work. And he really is a good client; he is always understanding if I need to extend deadlines, he's polite and friendly, and reasonable with his changes.

But the downside is that the only time I get to work on freelance is at work after hours (our boss is fine with us using the equipment here for our own projects, provided we've done our core hours). My setup at home isn't online, the tablet I've got there is a bit dodgy, the version I've got of Illustrator is old, and I tend to want to relax at night - I don't want to come home after painting all day and immediately start painting some more. I enjoy the writing I've been doing and would be happy to focus solely on that for a while.

But... the moneys! It's easy money, right at a time when I could really use it.

Auugh.

What would you do?
25 have fought ~ fight the power!
Comments
spotweld From: spotweld Date: December 11th, 2008 11:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
How would this client feel about you taking on the job on a tentative basis.
Or is this something for you to commit to fully?
tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
It wouldn't be tentative - if I take it on, I guarantee completion. That's why I'm thinking hard about this, because it is quite a committment; his project is a large one. It's all stuff that I find easy to do though - no full-on graphic novels or anything, just pure character design.
spotweld From: spotweld Date: December 11th, 2008 11:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Tough call then.
It sounds like you're worried that you're going to work yourself to the point that you start to dislike what you love doing?
tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
Haha... unfortunately I already kind of do.

No, that's an over-exaggeration. I still enjoy the process of drawing. I like our little hour-long drawing competitions on Friday afternoons here at work. But I don't have the same passion and drive for art anymore. I no longer have that massive urge to improve myself as a visual artist (and I feel that this urge is a dangerous thing for an artist to lose). I'm content to cruise, to not overextend myself.

Still, I'm thinking about taking this work on. I think if I change my working methods on this job to operate in Photoshop rather than Illustrator, the work will flow more easily. And as someone pointed out below, it's not so much about the work as it's about the end result; is my little apartment in Caloundra worth it?

A few more months of longer hours in return for the lifestyle I want? I think that it is definitely worth it...
spotweld From: spotweld Date: December 11th, 2008 11:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
A few more months of longer hours in return for the lifestyle I want? I think that it is definitely worth it...

Speaking as someone within the USA, I think I can pretty agree with that sentiment without any second thoughts.
rosequoll From: rosequoll Date: December 11th, 2008 11:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'd take it, piece by piece. But I'm a chronic over-scheduler, so ignore me!
tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Aww, I could never ignore you, gorgeous girl. :)
rosequoll From: rosequoll Date: December 11th, 2008 11:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Aw. fweee. ^_^

But yeah, I'd say take them, but one at a time I guess? Also, get yourself a better home computer setup!

Also, love that chicken icon. =)
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tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
Augh! I didn't get that invite! D: Just re-checked all my email accounts to be sure, but nada - Dunno what happened there!

I'm booked up most of tomorrow: a DevMeet in the morning followed by going to see Twilight (purely for mocking purposes, I assure you). But tomorrow night is free! What time did she have in mind?
tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh, and I was actually going to talk with you on Tuesday about possibly outsourcing some work to you - at one point my client mentioned that he wanted a couple of page-long comics done. Since Crikey Duck I've been a bit over the comic thing, but I've seen your storyboard work and I know you could do a good job of it. :)
tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oops, just got the email then! It must have arrived between when I checked first thing this morning, and now. :)

Sketchcrawl sounds awesome but I'm already booked up for the DevMeet and Movie - that should come out sometime in the afternoon, so if you guys are still sketchcrawling then, or up for a coffee, I would love to join you!
boatswain From: boatswain Date: December 11th, 2008 11:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
If I'm working for something, I'll take the job. As long as that goal is worth the sacrafice, I'll do the work. The best example I have is when I wanted a Cintiq, I took on some harder, after hours stuff to get it. I knew having that tablet would benifit me in the long run. Just ask if this job is worth getting closer to that house.
tania From: tania Date: December 11th, 2008 11:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
That's a very good point. I have been focusing on the work rather than the outcome (this is rather unlike me, actually). Whether or not my heart is 100% in drawing anymore shouldn't be the issue here, I should be taking the longer view.
dreamsofglass From: dreamsofglass Date: December 12th, 2008 01:48 pm (UTC) (Link)
That's exactly it. What's the goal. What easier way can you obtain it? If it's "just more money" and the trade off is a worse lifestyle, what's the point? Extra money is easily spent often for little gain..

I've often dreamed of some "regular, easy, well paid extra IT work after hours" .. but I often find when the one or two irregulars I actually do it for call me after hours or on a weekend, I groan at the loss of downtime. While I don't look forward to it at the time, it's easy money and in retrospect, it's not that bad :)
uniformgrey From: uniformgrey Date: December 12th, 2008 12:41 am (UTC) (Link)
Use the good money that you're getting from him to invest in a better tablet to make your workload easier on you when you are at home. Invest in better software to do the job if what you have now is sub-par to what you need. If the work is such a no-brainer for you and you get paid well for the job, then invest in the tools so you can invest in your future.
singingnettle From: singingnettle Date: December 12th, 2008 01:24 am (UTC) (Link)
Well...me, personally, I'd probably take it, but I'd kick myself for doing so. Then again, I'd kick myself if I didn't.

You should probably not listen to me, as I am clearly an idiot in these matters, since no matter what I'd do, I'd regret it.
stokerbramwell From: stokerbramwell Date: December 12th, 2008 02:22 am (UTC) (Link)
Well...I guess it really depends on how much you need the money, and how long the job would take.
master_haakon From: master_haakon Date: December 12th, 2008 04:29 am (UTC) (Link)
Take it, just sneaker net the files to and from home on a usb stick and make use of works internet to upload them etc.
sebkha From: sebkha Date: December 12th, 2008 04:41 am (UTC) (Link)
It comes down to your personal exchange rate between sanity and money. You've experienced burnout before, so you're in an informed position to judge the risk.
rahball From: rahball Date: December 12th, 2008 05:33 am (UTC) (Link)
Last few freelance jobs I did, I was mad keen on getting the money, but found it hard to be motivated to do the work.

I had to tell myself that no matter how tempting the money is, if you're not going to do the job promptly and professionally (or if you are, but it will send you mad), don't take it on.
hammond From: hammond Date: December 12th, 2008 06:36 am (UTC) (Link)
I'd say, take the job. He's a good customer to you, and you know how he works. It's reliable and easy enough for you.

And yes, if you're doing it for the house in Caloundra it would make for great motivation. Would the job at all make you want to improve your technique or whatever? Maybe you could use it to grow as an artist (even though you're happy crusing).

Also, you have to remember that if you turn him down, he'll have to find someone else who might not be as awesome as you!
tania From: tania Date: December 15th, 2008 04:11 am (UTC) (Link)
That last one is a very real danger. *nods sagely* I think I shall take the work.
c_eagle From: c_eagle Date: December 12th, 2008 07:48 am (UTC) (Link)
It sounds like all the right elements are in place.. except the tax on your free time... I dunno.. maybe do it every other day, rather than every single night? :}
sigmoidal_suseq From: sigmoidal_suseq Date: December 13th, 2008 10:56 am (UTC) (Link)
Money, money, money, money!!!!!!

Worker a bit harder now so you can retire earlier? :P

Also I my head completely exploded at work today. Explain later.
tania From: tania Date: December 15th, 2008 04:10 am (UTC) (Link)
In theory I am against this sort of thing, but if working harder for a little while now means the difference between being able to spend my evenings with my feet up on the back verandah and a facefull of ocean breeze, and not-quite-managing-it because we were $10k short of a 20% deposit, well... Imma workin'!

Tell me of your headsplodeyness, I must know! Also, Chloe is somewhere in the UK at the moment, I told her to look you up on Facebook and visit you.
25 have fought ~ fight the power!