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Re: My experience / observations of Upwork thus far and thoughts going forwards.

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Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
11 of 27

@Preston H wrote:

re: "And, is it worth it or should I quit now and find another way to achieve my goals? I am trying to work my way toward trying to answer those."

 

Tom:

You already know the answer to this question. Yes, you should quit now.


 Preston - you are simply unfamiliar with Tom's job (and yes, it is a job, not "something to do after work" as you so ignorantly and offensively stated earlier)

 

But that's OK. Just as many people (like me) would even begin to understand what data jobs are about or programming jobs etc, you can be forgiven for not knowing anything about photo post-processing.

 

Maybe best not to judge whether it's worthy being called a career or not when you haven't the foggiest hint of a clue what you are talking about though.

 

Tom, you are very good at what you do and yes, there are jobs to be had on Upwork, but I agree with the others that broadening focus a bit and thinking outside the box some will likely be required to make money. You need to draw people to your portfolio and concentrate on going after the higherend, higher  budget clients, the ones who need the craftsman not the "Have a pirated version of photoshop Elements 11 and know how to change a T-Shirt colour" brigade from the low cost countries.

 

It may not make you rich but I am pretty sure if you persevere , tweak your proposals as suggested, think outside the box some etc, your aim of contributing to living expensive is achievable medium term, and a career long term.

 

The guy that inspired me to learn proper post processing makes $$$$$$$$ perfecting photos for publications such as National Geographic and high end advertising campaigns. For those with the skills it most certainly **IS** a career.

 

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Active Member
Gwen R Member Since: Jul 23, 2019
12 of 27

You partially answered my primary question. Elance used to show when the project was awarded, the winning bid amount, and the winner of the bid. Does Upwork at least tell you when/if a project for which you submitted a proposal has been awarded?

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Community Guru
Cheryl K Member Since: Jul 16, 2015
13 of 27
Only if the client opts to let you know
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Active Member
Gwen R Member Since: Jul 23, 2019
14 of 27
Thanks for your response. I have taken a three-year hiatus from Upwork and
am just getting back into the proposal submission process. I really like
Elance's system of letting you see the award amount and awardee because it
helped in terms of placing future bids.
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Community Guru
Baris A Member Since: Mar 15, 2017
15 of 27

Gwen R wrote:

You partially answered my primary question. Elance used to show when the project was awarded, the winning bid amount, and the winner of the bid. Does Upwork at least tell you when/if a project for which you submitted a proposal has been awarded?


When someone else is hired, that project becomes listed in archieved proposals. If you check out the jobs in your archieved proposals a couple of days later if it's completed you can see who was hired and how much was paid.

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Active Member
Gwen R Member Since: Jul 23, 2019
16 of 27
Thank you. I will check this option.
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Community Guru
Cheryl K Member Since: Jul 16, 2015
17 of 27

Tom:

I'll start by professing my ignorance of your skillset. Is this something that is in demand? Off-line do you have clients that need this type of work done?

If there is a market and need for this skill, then I would turn your focus to your proposal. Remember the client only sees a preview that is the first part of the proposal and based on that decides whether to read the whole thing.

Make the focus of the proposal the client. So scratch this part " I am really interested in editing your beauty images" of course you are or you wouldn't apply for the job - this doesn't add anything

 

Flip this part around to take the focus off of you and onto what you can do for them.

"I have expertise in frequency separation and dodge and burning which I see is exactly what you are looking for! I have experience in all areas of image retouching including high end beauty and editorial imagery"

 

"Your beauty and editorial images require separation, dodge and burning <is this right? I don't know these terms> to make them the high-end images suitable for your

needs. I have extensive experience with these processes <insert example of job that you did this>

 

Get the idea? First find out if there is a market and then market yourself only to the kinds of people that need your service and pay your rates.

Community Guru
Randall S Member Since: Mar 20, 2017
BEST ANSWER
18 of 27

If you're looking to make money, I'd be more concerned with broadening your scope, not narrowing it. For example, as a voice actor, my "comfort zone" niche is in audiobook narration and training/tutorial videos. BUT, I also have a ton of experience in promotional material -- and in fact, at least half my work comes from this type of material. 

My focus on training and tutorial is GREAT when I want to apply for gigs of that type -- it's something I can confidently tell the clients (i.e., I am a veteran voice talent with extensive experience in the type of training narration you're seeking (insert examples of jobs/clients)...). But especially as you're breaking in, don't limit yourself. You have experience and talent outside that narrow focus, so market it. 

View solution in original post

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Community Leader
Anna T Member Since: Jan 27, 2017
19 of 27

Hi Tom:
I also do image retouching and have been here on Upwork for about a year and a half. I have found that most image retouching jobs posted here are one-off jobs and do not pay very well. As long as Upwork allows a minimum price of $5, there will usually be someone, somewhere willing to do the job at that price. This may not seem fair (and it isn’t to me either), but frankly, language is not always the first requirement for photoshop jobs-experience is. I say this because $5 is a lot more money in other countries and if a client can get the same job done for $5hr vs $20hr, many of them will, and also be happy with the outcome. English is not always required.

That said, I’ve done many photoshop jobs here, with several over $100. However, they were few and far between. I should also point out that I’m retired and I would only recommend Upwork photoshop jobs as a supplement to my income. Illustration fetches much more money. If I knew how to do it, I would, and I would do it here on Upwork.

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Community Guru
Baris A Member Since: Mar 15, 2017
20 of 27

Tom,

Image editing/retouching is IMO one of the best ways to make money on Upwork.  It’s a technical job. If it’s done well there is nothing a client can dislike unlike so called “creative jobs”. In addition it is specialized enough. You don’t need to narrow it any further.

 

Sending a pdf file is a big mistake. Having a pdf file under the image editing title in your portfolio is a bigger mistake but let’s start from 213 applications and $5/hour competition.

 

When you go to “my job feed” you see a search bar. Upwork UI made it very difficult for freelancers to find appropriate filters here. Therefore you should search something. Of course you don’t want to miss anything while searching so in the search box write “–asdfg” (no quotes). This will bring you all the job posts that don’t include the word “asdfg”. (EDIT: or you can just click search without writing anything. Just saw that...) Now you can see filter right side of the search box. Click this.

filters.jpg

Select the categories you are interested in, select your other preferences and under budget write something like $50 to $1000000. Now you won’t see fixed price jobs with a budget under $50. On experience level check intermediate and expert. Those who want entry level freelancers are the ones hiring $5/hour people. We only have –asdfg as the search term. Now bookmark this page. You’ll use this bookmark to search for jobs, not Upwok UI’s genius saved searches page and there won’t be 213 jobs to apply.

 

Next step, increase your price to something over $30. When clients search for freelancer they also have some filters and one of these is the price filter which cuts off at $30. This way clients searching for low rates won’t be able to find you.

 

Your profile: There are different opinions about this and most people don’t agree with me. Here it goes. Only the first 2 lines of your profile is important. Fill the rest with keywords and tags and even use words with typo as keywords (look at mine). Don’t say “I’m Tom”, don’t leave any blank lines.

 

Your application: No “hi there”, no “I’m Tom”, go straight to the subject…

Please find attached very similar samples I just finished for another client mine. As you can see I cleared all the warts and pimples and made skin like a baby’s backside. Please get in touch to discuss further, etc….

 

Now you can add a short bio if you like or if you think this is too short. Don’t send PDF. Send JPG. Send only the relevant ones. If you don’t have relevant ones make one but not what client asks or as a free sample. Bookmark the jobs you decide to apply. They disappear from search page after some number of applications but you can still apply to them if you have the link.

 

In your portfolio, separate the touchup jobs. Face, body, product, whatever. (See my portfolio to see what I mean) Don’t use PDF. Use JPG. And don’t make the jpg files too large. 1200px on the large side is more than enough.

If you come this far I’m impressed too.

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