A freelance career in the creative arts
A freelance career in the creative arts

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3.1 Online support

The following are examples of just some of the organisations designed to provide online support to freelancers and entrepreneurs, each with a different focus. There will be other organisations providing support for freelancers in your particular specialism.

You don’t need to follow these links now, but if a particular resource catches your eye have a quick look at it to familiarise yourself with the content and then come back to this page. You’ll get an opportunity to look in more detail at the different resources and organisations that can help you later this week.

To ensure you don’t lose your place in this course you should open these in a new browser window or tab. To do this on a computer hold the Ctrl key (or Cmd on a Mac) when you click a link and select to open it in a new window or tab.

  • Creative Entrepreneurs [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)]

    A website that brings you a range of useful resources, searchable by sector, to help you start and grow your creative business, from real life case studies to the thinking of leading experts. All resources are freely accessible.

  • Creative Industries Federation

    An independent, not-for-profit, membership organisation that connects, supports and champions all of the UK’s world-leading creative industries. Among other things, community membership gives you access to free legal and tax advice, bespoke HR resources and peer-to-peer coaching.

  • The Design Trust

    An online business school for designers, makers and professional creatives. Provides relevant blogs and online training courses.

  • Freelance UK

    Has ‘everything you need to make your freelancing career a success’, from information and news to an interactive community forum and a freelance directory. Articles such as ‘Top 5 skills you need to become a freelancer’ might be particularly useful.

  • Gov.uk

    This Government website offers a range of introductory guides on setting up a business, plus advice on tax and national insurance contributions.

  • Startups.co.uk

    The UK’s ‘largest, longest serving, and most comprehensive small business advice platform’, covering how to start, buy, run, or sell a business. Includes a range of ‘start up’ guides covering topics from ‘How to start an Etsy shop’ to ‘How to start a photography business’, as well as information on services and products, funding and legal advice.

  • Creative UK Group

    A collaboration between Creative England and Creative Industries Federation to connect, support, champion and invest in the UK’s world-leading creative industries. Produces an annual report exploring the potential of the UK's creative industries, and provides an opportunity to add your voice to their messages to key decision makers.

There are also a number of sites offering advice and support services that you can pay a fee to join, including Underpinned and Freelancer Club.

Many professional bodies and membership associations, connected to specific creative industries or arts sectors, provide useful career related information and advertise networking opportunities on their websites. You can use your preferred search engine to research your particular sector.

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