Brent Galloway is a freelance graphic designer based in Columbus, Ohio with a very specialized niche: logo and t-shirt design. From brands to bands, he helps his clients stay creatively relevant by authentically representing themselves and their culture with simple designs that resonate with their audience.
Brent’s refreshing transparency sets him apart from the rest. In January, he published a ‘Year in Review’ blog post, in which he shares details such as financial information, key projects he worked on throughout the year and his plans for the future. For example, Brent spent much of 2015 investing in his business and refining his focus to what he is most passionate about. With this new laser-focus, 2016 is set to be a huge year of creation (of both digital and physical products), so stay tuned!
Curious to know more? Meet Brent Galloway, freelance graphic designer.
What was life like before you started your graphic design business and what motivated you to quit your day job and start your own business?
I was your average college student working a part-time job before I started freelancing full-time. I felt like there would never be a better time to take a risk like running my own freelance graphic design business. So, once I graduated, I left my part-time job working in the print department of an office supply store and started working for myself. I’ve stuck with it ever since.
Brent’s 3 pearls of wisdom for entrepreneurs:
- Validate your idea. Before you consider changing careers, make sure the business you want to get into is actually something you’ll enjoy.
- Save up. Make sure you have enough saved up for emergencies and slow months before quitting your day job.
- Transition slowly. Learn everything you can about running your business, refine your craft and start building an audience before making the full jump to freelancing.
Describe the biggest challenge you’ve experienced as a small business owner and how you dealt with it.
The biggest challenge I’ve experienced with my freelance business has been turning my passion into a sustainable career. It’s the biggest struggle for many freelancers.
The key to overcoming this has been patience but, above all, staying focused— defining what I want to be known for. Having this focus on what I do and who I do it for makes marketing myself much easier. I’ve been able to attract exactly the type of clients I want to work with. Over the past year, I’m excited to say that my design work has become more sustainable than ever!
Share a story where you went above and beyond to solve a problem.
I was designing new merchandise for a client’s clothing brand. They wanted to take their brand to the next level, but weren’t quite sure how to do it. So, rather than simply delivering some new product designs, I researched and presented my thoughts on additional finishings for their t-shirts. For example, custom printed size tags and hem tags with their logo. These small finishes on their products really stand out and sets the bar high as far as quality goes.
The client was so stoked about this! I up-sold my services and we worked together to bring these brand assets to life. Now their brand and products are leaps and bounds ahead of their competition.
It’s a typical work day. Where can we find you?
My home office in Columbus, Ohio.
Inspiration or perspiration?
By putting in hard work with content marketing and getting your name out there, you’re increasing the odds of clients discovering you. I’m a big believer in making your own luck.
Who is your role model?
There isn’t one business or person who I really look up to most. It’s my peers that give me fuel. Seeing everyone around me killing it inspires me to push myself to do better work.
Do you have a motivational mantra or inspirational quote that helps you get you out of bed in the morning?
Stay true. (graphics on Brent’s first t-shirt)
I live by these words—I think they help represent and share the honesty in life.
I chose this to be the first product I’d share with the world.’
Work-Life balance is *tough* for a small business owner. How do you stay balanced?
I try and keep to a routine where I work Monday to Friday and no later than 8pm. Most weekends I do end up working on Saturday and sometimes Sunday, but those are usually my rest days. With that said, my schedule is flexible, so if there’s an important event, I’ll make time for it.
What’s next for Brent Galloway?
Right now, my primary goal is to make as much work as possible and really make a name for myself in my niche—designing t-shirts for the merchandise industry. Aside from my client work, I want to continue building my passive income streams and making content that connects with people.
As a freelance graphic t-shirt designer, mockups are par for the course.When Brent didn’t find any mockup product that suited his needs, what did he do? He created his own of course! Find out how he designed his own mockups from scratch.
Learn more about Brent Galloway, graphic designer:
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About the Author: Amanda is the Community Coordinator at FreshBooks. She loves executing extraordinary experiences every day both on and offline. When she’s not doing that, she is taking her dog, Jonny, on adventures or searching Toronto for the best coleslaw.