Alternatives to Upwork?



  • Hello! I am considering this a part two to my previous post "Upwork is ******* up".

    So I haven't had any luck with any agencies at the moment. I did receive a response recently from an agent of a literary agency and they just said that she just wasn't feeling any spark for my work. That said I am continuing to pursue agencies and improving my portfolio by adding more sequential works, spots, and book cover concepts.

    The main topic I wanted to really discuss though was if there is another freelance website out there that might yield better results compared to Upwork? In my previous post I was excited to join some Vet's coronavirus children's book about their dog for $1,500 before fees, until they showed me that the website reinforces a work-for-hire situation and that they would be completely entitled to all the rights to the work that I deliver. That said they declined my offer in the end.

    I have tried contacting some art directors via LinkedIn asking if they had any work for me, and often they would just ignore my messages, or just give me some misinformation to discourage my pursuit. I used to try making offers on Facebook and advertising my services, and often or not clients never had the budget to afford me.

    Any suggestions on getting successful freelance gigs without an agency (for now)?


  • Pro

    @Michael-Angelo-Go I've found a lot of my work by sending my portfolio to publishers by email (rather than LinkedIn). Other methods that are known to work are sending postcards to publishers, and attending events such as SCBWI conferences or international book fairs to network and show your portfolio.

    Of course, neither of those two are really happening in covid times. This is a weird couple years, but don't get discouraged 🙂 An agent saying they don't feel any "spark" from your work is a world away from saying your work isn't good enough! I think it means you're really getting up there in skill, and you may be falling juuuust short. Keep learning and improving, and you'll get there I do notice that you tend to crank out a lot of pieces in a very short amount of time. It would be good to slow down and really to invest some time in making your very best work. Quality is way more important than quantity in a portfolio.



  • You're absolutely right! 😃

    I do bust these things out really fast. I've considered myself a fast worked and prided myself on that, but if I can produce quality work in a short amount of time, let's see what I can produce in maybe 2x or 5x the time. I have been exerting all my energy when I should really be conserving it for the major blow.

    I might even take a break from seeking agencies or focusing on illustrations overall until I'm ready to make a major comeback. Thank you so much Ness you and everyone in this forum has always been helpful in my art journey.


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