Learn how to build a side hustle and start generating passive income with your creative skills.
- Design resources are created by designers who leverage existing skills and assets, and provide them to both designers and nondesigners. Think of digital design resources as converting your best skills as a designer into digital files that can be leveraged by others to save time, money, or make their lives easier. Let me explain. In any given week a designer or illustrator might need gouache-style brushes for Adobe Illustrator, a color separation action for Photoshop, or mockup templates for a branding project. All of these are examples of products that can help someone save time and be more productive.
Those are specific examples, but there are dozens of categories of design resources. Here's some of the most popular. Photoshop brushes, Photoshop actions, Illustrator brushes, graphic styles, Procreate brushes, Sketch plugins, texture files. And really, just about anything someone can leverage in their design or creative work that makes their lives easier. These examples are by no means an exhaustive list.
In fact, design resources are the most vast of all the different ways to grow a side hustle. Every day creatives invent new and exciting digital design resources that help designers work faster, be more productive, and get more enjoyment from their work. There's a category of product for just about anyone looking to build a side hustle. If you want to find more ideas for products, you should really check out Creative Market. It's filled with high quality resources that fit into over 1 This is like having a list of categories that have been proven to sell.
Let's look at an example of a designer who has made a side hustle into his full-time living. My friend, Ian Bernard, is a brilliant lettering artist. Last year he started doing a lot of his work in Procreate. Ian's a pretty clever guy, and he had built a library of layouts for his lettering. This helped him to avoid unnecessary repetition, and it keeps Ian's work looking clean and organized. When he shared his work, he noticed in the comments on social media that a lot of his followers were asking where they could get these templates that he was using.
They were practically begging him to sell something that he had already made and was just sitting on his hard drive. So, Ian packaged his templates and put them up for sale in his Creative Market shop. To drive traffic, he just shared the news on Instagram with his followers. Other lettering artists purchase those templates, saving themselves time, and allowing them to get a feel for how a professional lettering artist lays out their work. Ian's templates have generated thousands of dollars in profits, or pounds I suppose, since he lives in the UK, with minimal extra work.
And he's not trading time for money. After all, he was using these templates anyways. So, every time he posts his work he's advertising his templates at the same time. That's what I call killing two birds with one stone. Designers happily purchase these resources for a few reasons. One, it saves them time. Like you and me, most designers are busy and overworked, and they're happy to pay money to gain some of their time back. Two, it can help fill a knowledge gap.
We all have our weaknesses, so if a designer doesn't know how to complete a particular task, they might purchase a digital product to fill in the knowledge gap. Three, it helps people avoid tasks they don't like doing. For example, a lot of designers need Photoshop or Illustrator brushes. Many designers do not find it enjoyable or necessary to create their own Photoshop brushes. Why reinvent the wheel when other people have already created these brushes for you? Remember, what makes a digital resource valuable is that it's practical and it's useful for the person using it.
There's a quote that I love by Mark Twain, and he says, "During the gold rush, it's a good time "to be in the pick and shovel business." Similarly, there's plenty of money to be made selling designers the tools they need to get their job done. If you're looking to create a side income 1 to offset your other work, 1 making digital resources for other designers 1 is a great way to do it. 1 Of all the different ways to build a side hustle, 1 creating digital goods is the one 1 that involves the least additional time and investment. 1 Take a look on Creative Market at the different categories, 1 and ask yourself, what products resonate with you, 1 and might sell well? 1 This might spark the beginnings of your first product ideas.
- What is a side hustle?
- Selling design resources
- What does selling fonts entail?
- Making and releasing your own fonts
- Teaching your creative skills to others
- Selling merchandise featuring your designs
- Building your passive income strategy