That is the way you current your work and broaden your profile

Creating a piece of work may seem difficult, but it's important to get it in front of the right people and establish yourself as a creative in order to find jobs or assignments. How do you know which work to show? How can you make sure that you are achieving its full potential? And how important is social media really?

To gain insights from a freelance perspective, we spoke to Italian illustrator Olimpia Zagnoli, whose vibrant creations have earned her clients like Prada, Apple, the New York Times and beyond. She shares her experience of navigating social media and explains why editing your work can not only help you get jobs, but ultimately determine your direction.

On the agency side, we hear from Julie Cook – Head of Art and Production at Mother London and judge at this year's Photography Annual – about what commissioners should look for in a portfolio and how to decide what to include in the portfolio.


"I've never had the feeling that things were starting to work or that this particular project was being very well received, nothing like that," says Zagnoli. There was no discernible turning point where she found more appreciation – instead, her progress felt organic. "I think I developed an awareness that grew as I grew up."

“When you think about it, it happens not only with your career or your artistic development, but also with your musical tastes or your fashion tastes. When you are young, try a number of things – you try different styles, you try different hairstyles, you fall in love with writers you hate a few years later!

“So I think my artistic career has grown as much as I have,” she says when she found her voice. “There was a moment when I felt a little more confident about what I was saying, how I was dressing or how I was talking, and it was the same for drawing. At some point my drawings began to look more like me. "