Freelance update

Progress toward leaving my corporate job behind

The job at my Fortune 500 company is still a grind, but, I don’t need to go into details.  Anyone who has worked for a large company or even a smaller one knows that there is very little one can do to alleviate the frustration with playing the game to get ahead.

Product Reviews

I’ve done several product reviews, as mentioned in previous posts.  Recently, I’ve done a couple more where the hiring manager offered to pay for the product on Amazon via gift certificate.  I’ve done this twice.  The first one was for a product that has no science behind it; it does have a great deal of testimonial evidence on the web.  At best it’s alternative medicine.  I stated this observation in my review and gave it 4 stars, since it seemed like a nice product.  I’ll probably give it away as a gift, since it’s not useful to me.

I’ve been contracted for another product where the hiring manager is furnishing a gift certificate to buy the product.  It’s for something that I don’t think I’ll use, but, could.  I will probably pass it along to someone who would put it to more use.  I’m still looking for bigger freelance jobs and have expanded my search to  More about that site in another post.


I’ve also been adding inventory to my Etsy shop, and going to estate sales to find bargain priced treasures.  I now have 10 items in my shop; but I don’t want to carry a ton of inventory, so, the limit will probably be 20 or so until that business takes off.

Branding this business has also taken up some time.  I’m trying to design a logo, and a catch phrase too.  There are any number of logo design web sites that allow you to design your own logo for free.  The problem is that you can get only a low resolution image.  If you want something you can use on the web, a higher resolution comes with a price.

Digital Art

Painting and drawing have been another passion of mine.  I’ve sketched via pencil, charcoal and pastel.  I’ve also done some oil painting.  Some art, worth framing, is hanging on my walls.  Oil painting though can be a messy pastime.  It requires space, materials, and the willingness to clean brushes, and dispose of all the solvents, etc.  I’m not sure I have the time or energy to devote to something like that until I’m ready to retire.


Wacom (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I recently bought a Wacom graphics artist tablet and stylus.  Not a top tier one, but, nice.  It came with an older version of Sketchbook by Autodesk.  I’ve since upped the ante and bought a subscription based version of the latest Sketchbook software. has training available for Sketchbook, but, they have also released the Introduction set of videos to YouTube.  Sketchbook has a steep learning curve, so, it’ll take a while to know the ins and outs of the software.  So far, producing digital art is part science and part art.  The tool, Sketchbook, is very feature rich.  However, it also needs an artist’s eye to produce good digital art.

Why am I trying to even learn?  Art has progressed greatly in terms of technology, and I love technology and I love art.  This just seemed to be the next logical step.  I plan to produce some art for my various “businesses” like the Etsy shop.  If they are worthy of framing, I may put up a print on my wall.  If I get really good, I may even offer some for sale.


Estate Sales, Yet Another Passion

Estate Sales!

In some ways, they’re kind of sad. The person’s belongings that are being sold has either died, or is downsizing for one reason or another. The positive side is that the heirs will get a reasonable price for all of grandma’s treasures.
The other upside is the these antiques and heirlooms re-enter the market place.

Austrian Beer Stein

Austrian Beer Stein

In my case, I like to collect beer steins. Now that I’ve been collecting them for about 3 decades, I find that there aren’t too many places I can really display them. It’s time to clear house.

Antique-creamer-sideI’ve also picked up the odd piece of silver plate. I have no real knowledge of silver or silver plate. My eye is drawn to the unique and artistic. I’ve also bought art and books at an estate sale. I only buy what I like and can afford.

So, what do I do with all of my new-old possessions? I started an Etsy store! Of course! I could do it on Ebay, but, I like the eclectic nature of Etsy. Kind of artsy-fartsy.

The other business idea I’ve been thinking about is to be a shopper for others.  Perhaps someone is looking for a particular item, maybe an antique watch or depression-era glass.  I see it as a kind of personal shopper.

The point of all of this is that the list of opportunities to be a freelancer extend way beyond writing.  If I could create music, or sing or make stunning photographs, I’d be trying those too.