Mami With a Message: Michelle Munoz
Updated: Nov 8, 2021
Meet Michelle Munoz, freelance illustrator/designer based in Southern California, as she shares her journey of being a Latina Creative, taking the non-traditional path of work, and supporting other Women creators!
Q: Tell us about your story. How did you get into the field of Illustration and Design?
At first, I began creating my own artwork simply for fun while I was still in university. During My last year of school, I began to receive emails for people who were interested in hiring me for commissioned work because they were seeing what I was creating through social media. When I wasn't focused on school, I was vending and doing some freelance work on the side but I never really thought I could do this for a Living.
At the time I was also working as a graphic designer in my school; my plan was to graduate from school and continue working as a graphic designer. I decided to leave my position as a graphic designer in January 2020 and had a couple interviews coming up when COVID shut everything down. At the time, I became very stressed out with the fact that I had just graduated and because of covid, no one was hiring.
As a way to cope, I began to create my own artwork and passion projects and simply posted them on social media. After a couple of weeks, I began to collaborate with different brands/artists and began receiving more emails for potential freelance projects. I quickly realized I could make a living doing freelance.
Q: What was your experience like deciding to be self-employed right out of college?
Although doing freelance was something that I always had in the back of my mind, I was afraid to try because there wasn't many people I knew who were working as a freelancer and there were people who would try and discourage me because it wasn't a "traditional job". I am glad that my family was the one who pushed me to continue to do what I truly wanted and supported me! I have had the opportunity to work on such amazing projects and meet such wonderful people along the way.
"If I would've followed the trend, and just find another graphic design job, I would of most likely not had the opportunities that I've had. "
Q: Tell us about how you got started in your career as an Illustrator and Designer, and what inspires you?
I am a freelance illustrator/designer working for various brands. I take a lot of inspiration comes from my personal life; my cultural background, experiences I've gone through, etc. Working as a freelancer has definitely changed my life for the good. I have been able to make connections and create such meaningful friendships through this. And not to mention I wake up everyday happy and excited to get started with work, which I think is one of the best things!
Illustrations and Designs By Michelle Munoz
Q: What have you learned about yourself in creating your business?
I've learned a lot working for myself. Although working for yourself can be so stressful because everything relies on yourself. You definitely learn as you go when it comes to starting your business. I've also learned that I am not as bad at finances as I thought lol. A message I would want to get out is that if there is something that you truly want to do, DO IT! If you have the passion and drive, you will get there!
Q: What resources may you be able to share for those interested in pursuing their own business?
One book that was very helpful to me when it came to figuring out pricing, and contracts for my freelancing business was 'Pricing & Ethical Handbook Guidelines'. This book was very helpful to me especially since there isn't a clear answer as to how much to charge for your work.
Pandr Design Co. also have very helpful resources if your a freelancer as well as an outreach program to help you gain more client work.
Something that also helped me was connecting with others who are also in the freelance industry. When you have someone that also understands how freelancing works, your able to give each other tips or discuss what's working for you and what's not.
Q: Thank you for sharing your story, and inspiring others! How can we get in contact with you?
IG Handle: @Ittsmichellemunoz
Want to share your story, or nominate a Mami with a Message? Reach out today, we can't wait to build community together, and highlight your message.