Sat. Jun 15th, 2024

11 Ways I’ve Made Money in the Last 8 Years, From Illustrator to Consultant

Embarking on a journey of financial independence can take many forms. Over the last eight years, my career trajectory has taken me through various roles, from creative fields like illustration to more analytical ones like consulting. Each step has offered unique lessons on making money and diversifying income streams. Here are the 11 ways I’ve managed to generate income, highlighting the versatility and adaptability required in today’s ever-evolving job market.

1. Freelance Illustration

Tapping Into Creativity

  • Starting Point: Leveraged my artistic skills to create custom illustrations for clients.
  • Key Takeaway: Building a strong portfolio was essential to attract clients.

2. Graphic Design Services

Expanding Skill Set

  • Evolution: Moved from illustration to offering comprehensive graphic design services.
  • Lesson Learned: Understanding client needs and market trends helped me stay relevant.

3. Selling Digital Artwork Online

Embracing the Digital Age

  • Method: Utilized platforms like Etsy and Society6 to sell my artwork.
  • Insight: Passive income can come from continuously selling the same digital products.

4. Teaching Art Workshops

Sharing Knowledge

  • Approach: Conducted both online and in-person workshops.
  • Reflection: Teaching not only provided income but also enhanced my own skills and network.

5. Social Media Management for Small Businesses

Diving Into Digital Marketing

  • Transition: Offered social media strategy and content creation services.
  • Observation: Small businesses often need support in building their online presence.

6. Website Design and Development

Leveraging Tech Skills

  • Growth: Learned web design and development to offer more comprehensive digital solutions.
  • Realization: Technical skills combined with creative design can significantly increase marketability.

7. Writing and Content Creation

Exploring Words

  • Path: Started freelance writing, creating content for blogs, websites, and marketing materials.
  • Discovery: Good storytelling can greatly enhance any brand’s appeal.

8. Affiliate Marketing

Earning Through Referrals

  • Strategy: Promoted products I believed in through my blog and social media.
  • Finding: Authentic recommendations can lead to a steady stream of referral income.

9. E-commerce Store

Venturing Into Retail

  • Initiative: Launched an online store selling curated products related to my niche.
  • Lesson: E-commerce requires dedication to customer service and constant marketing efforts.

10. Consulting for Creative Businesses

Sharing Expertise

  • Step: Offered consulting services to creative entrepreneurs looking to grow their businesses.
  • Insight: Deep industry knowledge can be monetized by helping others succeed.

11. Investing in Stocks and Cryptocurrency

Diversifying Income

  • Action: Allocated a portion of earnings to investments.
  • Takeaway: Investing can be a way to build wealth over time, but it comes with risks and requires research.


My journey from illustrator to consultant illustrates that there are numerous paths to making money. The key is to remain adaptable, continuously learn, and not be afraid to venture into new areas. By diversifying income streams and leveraging both creative and technical skills, it’s possible to build a fulfilling and financially rewarding career.