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01.08.2016

Martina Vasilj – Graphic, Web and UI/UX Designer from Croatia


Martina Vasilj has been working as a graphic designer for over 15 years. She is passionate about UI and UX and has a degree in psychology. For Martina freelancing is like riding a bike; you have lots of fun and the feeling of freedom but there is also always the awareness of risk during the ride….


1) Firstly, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and what you are up to these days?

I have been a designer for 15 years now. I love to work with clients and developers to create great interfaces for challenging projects. I have a degree in psychology that helps me to understand user perception, cognition, emotion, and behavior.

I live and work in Croatia but have clients all over the world. I am, as all of us trying to enjoy my job and while enjoying my life.


2) If you would search for your profile on Google, which are the three keywords you would type in the search bar?

I started as a graphic designer but fell in love with interface design. So today my main focus is on creating UI and UX for websites, Wordpress themes, web and mobile apps as well as software solutions.


3) What was your inspiration and when did you actually decide to become a freelancer?

I have started working for myself after just a few years of experience in design studios. I opened a design and coding studio called „Prospekt“ in 2006 and since then I enlarged my team with a few designers and developers. We are working on a local and international level as a team or individually.


4) Was it difficult for you to start freelancing? What was the most challenging part? Did you face any problems?

I see freelancing as riding a bike. Lots of fun and the feeling of freedom but also always the awareness of risk during the ride. As a freelancer there is always a risk that you are going to struggle to get the next project or that the client you work for will end up not being as perfect as you hoped. Also, pricing is very hard to achieve because the competition is huge and range of price per project/hour can vary a lot.


5) Do you use other freelancers or companies to provide skills that you don’t possess? If so, how is it like?

I only make the connection between the client and other freelancers that I know or I have worked with. After that, they communicate directly. I do not look for and recommend freelancers that I don't personally know. I just offer the services that I know I can provide with quality and that will make my client happy. It's hard to make this kind of commitment when redistributing jobs.


6) Now tell us, how do you find new clients that are interested in your services? Where do most of your project offers come from?

I have published my portfolio on all the key sites for designers and also have a profile on social media networks. I also have my own website and I try to be as active as I can on sites like Envato, Toptal or Upwork. Luckily, this combination has worked pretty well until now and I haven't had much trouble in getting new clients interested in my work.


7) What do you enjoy most about your work? Are you especially proud of any particular project?

What I like the most is the thinking process and pixel perfect design. I enjoy solving complex problems and introducing small details that make a big UX difference. Thinking about the brand, clients goals, user behavior and combining them in a user flow is something that to me comes naturally. But it's not just the initial concept design that I like, I also enjoy the last phase when I get to choose the colors, shapes, and fonts. This process can last for hours but it's the cherry on the top of the project!


8) How do you set yourself apart from your competitors? What makes you special?

I am passionate about UI and UX, and I have worked in a sheer range of different projects what have helped me to get a rich portfolio. I have a deep understanding of design and customer behavior which gives me a perfect skill-set to discuss any design project. Besides the technical skills, I am super simple and easy to work with and always respect my client needs. Also, I always try to connect personally with my clients so I can better understand what they have in mind and how I can help them out.

9) What are the top three books, blogs or magazines you read to stay up to date or get inspiration for your designs?

Actually, I think everything can inspire you! Nowadays there are so many images, sites and pleople from which you can get inspiration. I usually go to Instagram or Pinterest to check the latest images on topics related to my current design job. Both social networks show me first hand how users understand and deal with a specific idea. To be up-to-date on new trends I also read the following sites:

https://www.smashingmagazine.com/
http://www.creativebloq.com/
http://blog.invisionapp.com/


10) Freestyle! Is there anything you would like to tell our readers?

Work on your portfolio every day because your portfolio is your biggest asset when searching for new jobs. I would also recommend everyone to work on their soft skills and personality. Being nice to people is a bonus that every client would appreciate, and it costs you nothing.



You can find my freelancer profile here:
Link to freelancermap.com profile: Martina Vasilj
Link to website: http://www.prospekt.hr
Skype: Prospektdesign



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Pic: © Martina Vasilj


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