Frederick Polk is here to help.
Polk is the founder of One Black Crayon,
a one-person design firm that specializes in building websites and HTML emails. Polk says his sweet spot is helping small businesses and individuals that need "a little hand holding" when connecting with their clients through the web.
Polk has been working as a freelancer for 15 years, with his business One Black Crayon officially opening in 2009. During his those 15 years, Polk worked closely with The Image Shoppe
for five years -- and he credits his time there as a designer/developer/coder with teaching him the importance of putting a client's needs first and understanding business relationships.
As long time freelancer, Polk is acutely aware of the challenges of building a career in the "gig economy." Polk says the key to survival is to "stay relevant." He recommends Twitter as a tool to follow developers and designers and see what they talk about, and says he reads online magazines and blogs "that push me the in the right direction." Working solo doesn't mean working alone either. "It's important to always be around like-minded people," he says.
Besides his work as a freelancer, Polk is well known for his service in the design and tech community, and as a key volunteer at user groups and events such as GiveCamp, where he helps nonprofits improve and optimize their web presence.
In his spare time, Polk continues to work on his startup venture, IamBookable, an application that makes it easier for organizations to find speakers and entertainers. He also dabbles in stand-up comedy.
To connect with Polk, you can view his website here
Writer: John Rumery, Innovation and Jobs News Editor