In a new Timeout video, product designer Juan Arreguin shares what he’s learned from freelancing for the past two years. Even though there are some challenges when it comes to freelancing, for Juan, the positives outweigh the negatives.
What’s the impact of working remotely?
My name is Juan Arreguin. I am a freelancer—I’ve been freelancing for two years. The impact that remote work has had on my life has been that my work can actually reach beyond what I’m surrounded by, so San Francisco, the US—it allows me to travel. It allows me to expose my work, meet new clients, and meet new cultures as well.
What’s the most difficult part about freelancing?
You don’t have the comfort of having someone to sort of answer questions or just ask “is this right?” Everything that you do is sort of one of those things that - you have to be right. With a team, you end up working as a collaboration—as a team dynamic, right. Being a freelancer, especially on your own—you are the team. You have control, but also that control is something you have to apply to yourself. If you don’t have the control then, it’s one of those things that things can go wild….personal, work, friendships, and so on.
What does design mean to you?
We communicate through language and visuals and there are other ways of doing that. But design to me means that you’re translating someone’s ideas and thoughts into a visual output.
What impact has Dribbble had on your career?
Dribbble has had an impact on my career in the way that it actually allowed me to have my first job out of college. This company in 24 hours they reached out to me. They asked me what I did and if I was interested in coming in to interview and so, in 24 hours I was able to get a job because of Dribbble.
What is your typical day like?
My typical day starts with creating a schedule, going to the gym, showering, dressing up. It’s easy to just roll out of bed and be in your PJs but then you never separate the personal from the work.
Why do you choose to freelance?
My office is where I go. There are a lot of times that office is me driving, you know, me out at the beach. I was traveling through the Czech Republic and I was like “I need to work” but we also need to get to this place within an estimated time. So we were shifting between me working and driving and then working and then driving. It got even to a point where I ended up taking calls through this as we were driving. This is the reason why I’m a freelancer. I become more responsible and I have to be.