Being every role - Illustrator Emmeline Pidgen


Since leaving university Emmeline has been freeance, building her online presence and her business. In 2016 she was named as the UK's Freelancer of the Year by IPSE.

Here she chats about her side projects, making the most of the quiet spells and how she enjoys being every role in the business. Even the accounts.

More from Emmeline

Emmeline on Twitter

Emmeline on Instagram

Emmeline on YouTube

Emmeline's site

Emmeline's Etsy Shop

Emmeline's blog


Useful Links


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Steve's a freelancer helping businesses use and make video & audio content in much better ways. Find out more at, track him down on Twitter @sfolland or lay a trail of cake and he'll eventually catch you up.

Check out Steve's Being Freelance Vlog that documents his weekly wanderings and wonderings as a freelancer.


Transcription of Being Freelance Podcast interview with Emmeline Pidgen

Steve Folland:        Hey I'm Steve Folland. Thanks for listening. Let's find out what it's like being freelance for illustrator Emmeline Pidgen... who I've been dying to talk to for ages for this. We've had so many false starts. I swear the first time we were meant to talk the computers went wrong and then the second time my daughter got chicken pox then the third time her computer totally died. Then the fourth time, my daughter had a sickness vomiting type bug, so we had to postpone again. Yeah it felt jinxed but finally we got to talk. Emmeline was the totally rightful for winner of Freelance of the Year 2016 in the UK which is run by IPSE, which is like the ... I can never remember the Institute's of the professional and self-employed or something like that. Anyway they run this competition every year and I was in the final last year and ended up sitting next to Emmeline, and we spent a lot of the day chatting and in the pub afterwards and what she does with her business is awesome so I couldn't wait to find out what the year after winning has had in store for her.  I've deliberately held back because I wanted to find out what would happen in that year after winning. So you can find details of National Freelancer's Day at, we'll put a link there. While you're there, don't forget to check out the vlog which is me documenting my freelance week and sign up to the newsletter so you get inspired on a weekly basis. And oh of course hit subscribe on the flippin' podcast if you haven't. That would be marvellous. But first let's go to the north west of England and say hey to Emmeline Pidgen who is a freelance illustrator. Hey Emmeline!  

Emmeline Pidgen:        Hello!

Steve Folland:    02:08    So, as ever, how about we get started hearing about how you got started being freelance.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yes sure. Well I graduated from University College in Falmouth in Cornwall and straight after I graduated I just went into freelancing. I was like I know what I want to do so I'm just going to go for it and for the first two months I had a part time job just like a sales position but I kept finding it was really draining my creativity and I didn't really have any time to do the work I really wanted to do, so I went full time freelance and that was about six years ago and I'd say it's been going okay!

Steve Folland:    02:49    Wow, so how did you go about finding the work?

Emmeline Pidgen:        My first step was pretty much to make a really good online presence like set  up a portfolio, website, all the social medias and so building that up. I was quite lucky to find that people were coming to me rather than me going out specifically hunting for jobs. I just got some really nice emails in my inbox ....  

Steve Folland:    03:21    Wow! So was that an online presence that you were building up while you were at college, university presumably doing an arts based course?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah it's a B.A. on Illustration degree and part of our third year was to set up a website which was really useful and we got some good lessons on navigating the freelance world as well.

Steve Folland:    03:48    Oh wow! Because often we don't hear that. Often people bemoan the actual vocational education.  So even while you were studying, you then started putting yourself out there. Who was contacting you? Like businesses?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I mean a lot of my first jobs were smaller, local businesses and schools and things like that. I'm trying to remember it feels like such a long time ago but then I did get an agent within my first year of business which expanded my reach quite a lot and then my first pitch-work was with an American publisher so that's obviously quite a lot further away than local Lancashire businesses.

Steve Folland:    04:33    And do you still work with an agent now?

Emmeline Pidgen:        No, they weren't great at all. I made the decision to leave and I've not had an agent for about probably about five years and I quite enjoy it but there's pros and cons definitely. It's something that yeah I might think about again.

Steve Folland:        But it's obviously not stopped you getting the work that's for sure.

Emmeline Pidgen:        No, no.

Steve Folland:    04:57    So basically you're saying that for the past six years then, it's all just been a steady stream of stuff coming which is built upon itself through the work you share online?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah there's always ups and downs like with any freelance business but for me when I have a quieter time, I'll pour everything into working on my own projects say it doesn't feel like a quieter time but obviously money-wise it might be.  

Steve Folland:    05:25    Do you remember when you first came across that? As in like suddenly there wasn't the work. Had you anticipated that happening?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I did anticipate it, because if you think about freelancing like everything's on you so there’s going to be times where you're going to be focussing on a certain aspect of your business and you're not say hunting for jobs or doing promotion so that people come to you. So it's just something to factor in, it always picks up again. So it's just something you have to deal with.

Steve Folland:    05:58    And when you started out. Did you have an idea of the kind of work that you wanted to do?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah, when I first started I was all about picture books like my whole portfolio was geared towards that and as it's gone on like I've recently been really interested in working in comics. I've been moving my forte towards that and then I love working for advertising campaigns so it's a very moveable thing and I like to just think of it as more strings in my bow I guess, to be able to work on what I really enjoy at the time.

Steve Folland:    06:39    So what are those varied strings to your bow, because you seem to have quite a diverse way of bringing an income in.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I mean I've got illustration for commissions, like with clients and then I'm also working on writing and illustrating my own stories in books at the moment. There's that and I do blogging, and workshops and I've got an online shop and I write freelance guides so it's quite a lot at the moment.

Steve Folland:    07:10    When did you start doing the workshops?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Probably a couple of years ago. It was kind of a personal choice for me because I've been dealing with anxiety and things, so I was like, I'm going to set myself some goals to just help myself with that. I'm gonna do some workshops and get past this. I've been doing workshops in schools and universities. I mean it's been really nice, really good to talk about illustration and freelancing with young people and help inspire them.

Steve Folland:    07:50    Wow that's so cool. Did that build your confidence, beyond just public speaking?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I think so because I mean as a business owner, it's pretty important to develop those skills in talking to people and networking, so that's something that's really grown from doing the workshops and built my confidence with it. It's fun as well seeing kids getting really inspired to be freelancers or illustrators. I mean it's something that I think a lot of kids in schools don't really think of as a completely viable option as a career. So it's great to talk to them about that.

Steve Folland:    08:04    And then you mentioned your blogging as well, so your blog sort of sits separate from your portfolio type site doesn't it?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I use it to give a more in-depth look at kind of my process in illustration, like if I do a commission I'll use the blog after. To give an example like I did a book cover for a new edition of Peter Pan with Egmont publishing. And for that when the book was published, I made a process post on my blog which showed the video showing the stages from the early sketches through to when it looked really messy in the middle and then to the finished illustration and then just wrote about the process and interacting with the client and all that kind of thing like I just thought that's what I like to see from my favourite artists. I find it really interesting so that's what I'll give back.

Steve Folland:    09:51    Yeah that's cool. But as well as giving back to the community or potential illustrators, do you find that potential clients are your clients get into all of that kind of thing as well?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah. With my blog recently, I had a client contact me because they saw one of my projects where I illustrated my outfit for each day in a month and they want some illustrations. It was for a dress code fair their school and they really like the style of illustration. Obviously my project is about the outfits so it lent itself really well to that job. So I get all sorts of leads from it, even if it's just posts for fun.

Steve Folland:        Yeah that's cool. I love that. So let's talk about that now. So what you drew or you illustrated, because it wasn't just drew - you painted it and everything, so you did everything you wore for the whole of October and I think you did a year before as well.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I did it in July the year before.

Steve Folland:    10:58    So a whole illustration a day like ... I mean other than that person getting in touch,  what do you get out of doing that. Like is it quite a task? Halfway through do you think, 'Oh man.' I'm a man, if I was doing this, I'd barely have enough outfits to change every single week.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah. There are definitely thoughts of 'Oh what have I done again,' to this. Well not again, because I chose to do it but it's just really nice to take on these kind of monthly challenges. Like I've taken part in Ink October and I illustrated that before which are daily illustration challenges as a kind of online community type thing. But for this one, I started it as just a project for myself just to improve my drawing and see if I could do it as I was starting the first year of it. I was thinking oh it might be really good to get some clothing companies involved in this. See if they'd like to collaborate. I contacted companies like Fatface, Oasis, Joules, Laure Ashley, Clarks, Cath Kidston,  loads of my favourite clothing companies and I just asked if they'd like to be involved in it and I was really taken aback by how positive their response to those going were. So they sent me some treats and that helped me with the wardrobe aspect of it, having enough clothes to feature. It's really good from a promotional point of view as well because they would post it on their Instagram and Twitter and blogs, so it was jus great in terms of networking as well. In the end the October project of 'What Emmeline wore in October' ended up with over a hundred thousand blog views which is overwhelming. It's great.

Steve Folland:        It's so cool I love it. We'll put a link of course in the show notes so people can take a look. But what of course is cool to that as well is the fact that it's what Emmeline wore. It's like you've created this, I don't know, almost like this persona of yourself if you know what I mean.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah yeah, I suppose so. I mean there are times in the year where I will just wear black jeans and a jumper every day. So I guess with the project it's great for me to be able to dig out clothes in the back of my wardrobe and think okay I'm going to wear something a bit different and not worry about what everyone thinks of it.

Steve Folland:        Yeah I feel like Emmeline, the actual character that you've drawn and the script, what would call that? The writing that goes with it. You see that feels like Emmeline yourself are meant to be in a book like that. Or maybe I've just said what your book is.

Emmeline Pidgen:        I always find that when I'm drawing characters they always end up looking like people I know or me. There's so many of my characters are just like my mum, I suppose they just filter in from my life.

Steve Folland:    14:27    That's nice. So that's one key side project. And you mentioned the sort of Twitter type ones as well, like community ones, have you done other side projects at all?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Well I've been working on my own comics - it's hard to narrow down what counts as a side project because so much of it is integrated with my main work and it's all got its own benefits.

Steve Folland:        Yeah I guess to give you a slight definition it's like if a client hasn't come to you and said can you do this - here's some money. But you're doing it anyway. Then it's probably a side project. It's something you've done of your own creative back. Yeah. So it sounds like your certainly like the comics is something you're doing then.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I guest at a couple of comic festivals this year. So comics is definitely something I'm really focusing on right now. And I've got so many ideas, it's just really finding the time to get them all down and storyboarded and sketched out. Yeah so, doing comics and at the moment I'm also writing my first authored illustrated picture book which I'm really excited about. I can't wait to keep working on it.

Steve Folland:    15:19    That's so cool and do you have, are you doing that yourself, or do you have a publisher if you see what I mean?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I'm doing it myself at the moment, I'm kind of at the storyboarding stage and just like refining the sketches but I've got the story written out and the characters sketched. So it's kind of nearing the time where I will be approaching publishers with it. So I'll probably pop down to London and do a few portfolio rounds with the manuscript and everything.

Steve Folland:        Exciting - yeah. So it sounds like you have a conscious direction of what you want to do like, do you sit and plan what you want to do or just go with the flow.

Emmeline Pidgen:        I have vague goals. Like I don't like to be too strict with it because I like to follow my impulses in my career because I mean sometimes you just really have to go with your where your creative is really telling you to go. But I do have business plans and goals for the future. It's just intertwining everything to meet those goals.

Steve Folland:    17:07    When it comes to working as a business, how have you found that side of it?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I really enjoy it. I was talking to someone the other day and I was like yeah, I really even enjoy the accounting side of things. Yeah I love being every role in the business, like all of the marketing and negotiating with clients and I've got really good at writing good emails and everything, so yeah I love it.

Steve Folland:    17:38    Would that be writing a good email that is like saying where's my money sort of thing, or?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Oh yeah. All kinds of emails but those definitely crop up.

Steve Folland:        Yeah that's that sort of standing up for yourself kind of thing.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah. And I think I mean with winning the Freelancer of the Year award last year since then it's given me a lot more confidence in standing up for myself as a freelancer and charging the levels that I should and yeah negotiating contracts so that’s been great.

Steve Folland:        That's interesting yes. I mean we were sitting next to each other at the awards. Yeah. And then suddenly you were up there and everybody's taking your photo and you're Freelancer of the Year but that's so cool. It's interesting to hear that it gave you added confidence. You know as a Freelancer of the Year it sounds like you already nailed it and yet actually it sounds like it's taken it up a gear.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I think it has, it's kind of like validation in a way. And it's helped me in ways that I didn't really expect it would. And that mean a lot of it has come from meeting the other freelance finalists like yourself and that's been great and networking and talking to people and yeah it has just been really good. Definitely the prize money's been really useful mainly from the standpoint that it's allowed me some time to work on the picture book and the comics that I wouldn't really have been able to dedicate that time to that before because I do have to focus on commissions for keeping like a living wage for myself. So that's been amazing and they're the kind of things I think will be career defining. So It's great to have that opportunity.

Steve Folland:    19:34    Yeah awesome, to be able to turn down work. Yeah. How do you decide when to turn down work?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I've learned to trust my intuition. I think everyone's made some mistakes in their careers and I think that that's fine. It's all learning process. It's made me develop a really good sense when suddenly it's not quite right with a client and I can kind of tell when they might be a bit tricky to deal with or unreliable at paying. And I've just learnt to trust my gut with it.

Steve Folland:    20:11    Sometimes have you been offered work which you felt wasn't necessarily what you wanted to do other than the fact that it might be a bad client? I imagine as an illustrator, well I don't know maybe I'm totally wrong, but as an illustrator you might get offered at work which is what you want to do. Like, it doesn't suit you? I don't know.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah, I tend to enjoy the problem solving aspect of a brief so I'm quite open to try most projects. So I've not really had too much of that. But I have had clients come up and have something slightly dodgy in the contract for copyright or something like that so I've not been afraid to turn something down if it's exploitative.

Steve Folland:    21:05    Was that something that got drummed into you at uni because it sounds like you went to a pretty smart one that actually taught you useful things.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah we were, we were told that but I think it's something that's definitely grown as I've been freelancing and getting fully into this whole thing with copyright is such and such a tangled mess. But I think it's always hard starting out and I think I had taken on some projects where it's not been as fair as it could be. And yeah I'm at that stage now where I'll be like okay if you want full copyright, I don't really advise that, you don't need it because licenses are amazing. And I'm confident enough in myself to say that and try and talk to the client about it.

Steve Folland:    21:58    And how about the way you work. Do you work from home, a studio, what's what your day like?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I work from home and I just moved into a new house so I finally have like a dedicated studio/ office room. So that's a really great to be able to close the door and work at the end of the day. And somewhere to store all my illustration books and pencils.

Steve Folland:    22:25    What does your day look like?

Emmeline Pidgen:        It's quite flexible, working hours wise. I usually try and do a 9 to 5 but sometimes if I'm working on a really intense commission and there's a strict deadline sometimes I'll work late into the evening. But I always try that if I over work on one day, maybe the next week I'll give myself a day off or if I have to work on the weekends I'll make up for that. So it tends to be quite balanced.

Steve Folland:        Interesting that you went for the 9 to 5, given that you never worked a 9 to 5.

Emmeline Pidgen:        I know.  I think it's just kind of working around everyone else. Like all my friends work 9:00 to 5:00 pretty much. And my family and their kind of socially normal working hours so, I don't know I guess it fits into that.
Steve Folland:    23:26    Yeah no that's true, that's a good point. And how about socially like I've spoken to freelancers before who get quite isolated frankly especially if they're doing something a bit like you are where they're not working as part of a team on a project. You've got a brief and then you go off presumably for quite some time.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah. I do miss that kind of studio atmosphere. Like when I was at uni, we were in such a big studio with people mulling around and we could all discuss our ideas in a really supportive environment. Obviously now, it's just me on my own, so that's another thing I've had to learn is to trust my own guidance, with like say, 'Is this character working? Why is it not working' and and just have that kind of conversation. But yeah loneliness is definitely an issue and I've tried to get around that by going to freelance and illustrating meet ups and doing those workshops and I'm hopefully going to try some hot-desking in the next couple months. It should be good.

Steve Folland:    24:37    Yeah good idea. Would you say there have been any other sort of challenges that we haven't touched upon?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Well we kind of touched on late payment and that's always going to be an issue I think for all freelancers and it's not happened that often but when it has happened to me, I've had one particularly bad experience with it. But in my career I take everything as a learning experience and you just have to grow from it really. So unfortunately it's made me a bit more maybe suspicious of clients, like if they're not responding at the end of a project. I'm like 'Oh no, are they going to pay me? Oh God!' It's made me be a bit more strict in the contracts and asking for a deposit for a job or not sending files before I receive payment. It depends on the project but yeah I've developed those as kind of safeguards against it and I can identify the signs of when that might happen now.

Steve Folland:        Oh man! Why can't everybody just be nice?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I know, I know.

Steve Folland:        You kind of need almost like a little buffer of money in order for the late payers not to stress you out as much.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I think even if you have that, it's going to stress out. Because when you've worked hard on something, you deserve to be paid for it. But yeah, it's useful to have a bit saved up in case of that.

Steve Folland:    26:20    Yeah. Now I always do this thing for three facts about yourself. Make two true, and one a lie, and let me figure out the lie. So what have you got for me?

Emmeline Pidgen:        All right. Okay first fact, I once drew an illustration of Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen from Changing Rooms and handed it to him. Second, I made a viral video about He-man characters singing Queen which has had almost two million views on YouTube.

Steve Folland:        Wow. What characters? Oh He-man! Brilliant! OK the third one.

Emmeline Pidgen:        OK. Number three, I was an extra in Fast and Furious 6.

Steve Folland:    27:04    Oh my god. Okay so Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen very dapping chap for people who don't know him from around the world and aren't going to be bothered to try and spell Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen and Google either. I can imagine though that you would have drawn him just from you know, looking at your style of your illustrations because he had such a flamboyant colourful flowing nature to him with long hair and this sort of Bohemian kind of ... and these sort of big ruffs and long cloaks and things that I imagine he would be fun to draw so I can imagine you drawing him but would you then give it to him? He-man - you did a video of He-man singing a Queen song, did you illustrate the He-man characters or did you cut them out of ...?

Emmeline Pidgen:        No they were pre-found images, but I animated them in Windows Movie Maker like I drew over moving mouths and things and animated it in movie maker. Years ago.

Steve Folland:    27:58    And how was Skeletal on that? Did he hit the good notes?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah he was my favourite in it.  

Steve Folland:    27:58    And what did you do in Fast and Furious 6?

Emmeline Pidgen:        It was filmed in Liverpool in the tunnel, in the Queensway tunnel. It's just basically me walking in the background as there's a big car chase going on.

Steve Folland:    28:41    Oh man, okay and where did you meet Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen?

Emmeline Pidgen:        At a interior design event.

Steve Folland:        These are all so believable! Fast and Furious, you see I've not seen it so I don't know. I presume the tunnel in Liverpool were you, would they let a normal person be in the background of a car chase. That's the alarm bell for me. I kind of always presumed that the people in the background of car chases are some form of stunt person because obviously the car chase could go wrong.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Well there's different sections, like I'm not close up in it. I'm really not. I mean I did other extras work in Liverpool for the Fantastic Beasts film. So it was through that same agency and yeah.

Steve Folland:        You make a compelling case and yet equally Fantastic Beasts. Was that filmed at a similar time is Fast and Furious 6. Because aren't they on Fast and Furious 8.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah yeah. Fast and Furious 6 came out in 2013.

Steve Folland:        Ah you know too much! Okay, I don't think you were in Fast and Furious 6.

Emmeline Pidgen:        You're right yeah. Yeah that's right.

Steve Folland:        You're such a good liar!

Emmeline Pidgen:        Oh no - this is going to give me a bad reputation! I prepared a lot for that. I researched all about it. I went fully in.

Steve Folland:        I really am so impressed.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen really didn't like my drawing. He was quite offended, I think.

Steve Folland:        Seriously?!

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I don't think he liked me.

Steve Folland:        How rude!

Emmeline Pidgen:        Oh well, I've got it signed.

Steve Folland:    30:19    And the He-man! So is that still on YouTube now?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah, it's called Boheman Rhapsody. But, oh my god, I'm so embarrassed by it because I did it when I was like 16 or 17 and literally just to make my best friend laugh and then it just took off and so it is not good quality.

Steve Folland:        Oh my god, I've just found it. Ten years ago, two million views. That's incredible. Wow.

Emmeline Pidgen:        You can watch it later. With that though, because I have started using my YouTube channel to do live drawing videos and freelance talks and things like that, I was like I can't delete it. I'll just leave it on there and it will just be an embarrassing nugget on my YouTube channel.

Steve Folland:        Yeah I like that, the description now says - "now ten years after creating this as a teenager, I'm a professional illustrator. I've grown up." I don't think you should be embarrassed by it especially because it was harder to make things like that back then as well.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah and I was using the worst program for it - Microsoft Paint and Windows Movie Maker that, no - you don't use that for animation.

Steve Folland:        And you have picked the longest Queen song going. You should've picked Crazy Little Thing Called Love or something like that.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Admittedly, I did cut a bit out of it. I was just a few weeks in and I was like Oh I can't, I can't do the whole thing.

Steve Folland:        You lost the will to live!

Steve Folland:    32:22    So good. Now, okay I'm going to have to click away from that before I watch it. There we are. Let's go back to your, there we are back to your shop. Oh yeah, your shop! I mean you mentioned your shop earlier, I clicked away from He-man and landed on your new shop. Is that like a big part for you as well?

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah I mean I got an online shop website and I've also got an etsy. I only set up the etsy like a few months ago, so I'm just kind of getting into that now. But I really like the community aspect of that so I'm kind of pushing that at the moment. I don't know if that's the one you're on or if you're on the website one but I'm trying to maintain both and grow them.

Steve Folland:    33:12    But you've also got your cards stocked in places as well, haven't you? How do you do that? Do you have to go to the place or do you find a card stockist pimp sort of thing.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Most of those are through a company called Oh Dear and they do a lot of homeware and cards and things. And they set up I think in 2011 and I was one of their artists right from the start. So every so often they'll get in touch and be like 'hey do you want to do any card designs and I'll be like yeah, sure' and then they stock it everywhere. They've been in the V&A and the Tate and high street shops.

Steve Folland:    34:01    That's so cool. And they contacted you when they first started in the first place.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah, and through Twitter.

Steve Folland:    34:09    So it feels like a lot of these opportunities really do come from putting regular stuff out on social and going into detail on your blog the way you do.

Emmeline Pidgen:        Yeah it works for me definitely.

Steve Folland:    34:22    And how often would you say you do put stuff out there into the world?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I've been asked this recently and I said I think I spend about 40% of my time on promotion but it obviously varies week for week. I mean when I'm drawing, if I've just done it for fun or just for a bit experimenting, then I'll just take a picture and put it on Instagram and it takes me no time and then it just spreads my work to a huge audience. I guess with illustration, it's such a shareable thing. It works really well for social media and blogs.

Steve Folland:    35:05    Cool. Now if you could tell your younger self one thing about being freelance what would that be?

Emmeline Pidgen:        I think it would be to just trust my intuition and then maybe I'd have avoided some of those bad clients. But I think another one of the major things that affects a lot of, and especially, illustration graduates and art graduates is to not be tempted to work for free. It's such a big issue in the creative industries at the moment. that Companies who can definitely afford it, asking graduates to work for free. With competitions as well they'll be asked to submit an illustration on this theme and then maybe just maybe you'll win the opportunity for this company to use your work on the huge ad campaign or maybe they'll be a prize but it's just not healthy for the creative industries at all because if there's more and more people who are willing to work for free, that's so many clients that aren't going to pay someone and so you never can get past that that level.  I get angry thinking about it but yeah.

Steve Folland:        And the trouble is, is that other people would then argue well you know if you're starting out and there's the opportunity to suddenly have that big client or whatever and list that on your website or get your ...

Emmeline Pidgen:        I know, it's very tempting. At the start, I think I did do a couple of projects for at least not as much money I should be paid for. But the thing is, I think it's more worth your time spending it working on your portfolio and working on things you love because that is going to be what you rely on in the future, rather than just a name of a company. It's like if your work is really good it doesn't matter if you've worked for this company before, you're gonna get employed.

Steve Folland:        Nice. Emmeline thank you so much and congratulations again, by the way, on being Freelancer of the Year. Check out - links through to everything that Emmeline is up to. Check out her gorgeous work. Also of course, He-man and keep an eye out - join her on Twitter and Instagram for when her children's book perhaps finds its way onto a bookshelf. Good luck, I'm glad everything is going so well and all the best being freelance!

Emmeline Pidgen:         Thank you very much!