Using a design pseudonym/alias
Secondly becuase i was worried about being found out I decided to use an alias, basically my name but slightly changed (surname first and christian name second) so that once I'm out there If I get found they won't know its me (which has happened on Linkedin) Can you foresee any problems with clients etc calling me something different and writing checks etc. Could I on the invoice say please pay all checks to...
Any help/advice is appreciated!
Newly appointed Senior Designer/Managing Director
Next year I'll be a millionaire Rodney
- When you register as self-employed with HMRC they ask for your name, and the business name. Using a pseudonym for the business name is no problem.
I'm trading under what will be my married name (currently engaged), with a "Current Name t/a Michelle Dancer" business bank account. This means I can accept cheques under either name.
You may however run into trouble if you're 100% trying to keep your real name secret from everyone you work for...for example if you send invoices by Paypal to an overseas client they have your real name on, and I'm sure plenty of other things do too.
TL;DR: Register the trading name and feel free to not mention your real one until you're taking someone's money :D
The awkward thing in your situation is using the work you've done for the company, I can't really see how you're going to keep that secret from them indefinitely. Be sure there's nothing in your contract with them that forbids it, and be honest on your portfolio site about what you did/didn't do on a given project.
- I would suggest being honest, you said you would worry you would get found out, surely that's going to impact your work. You may find that your employer maybe happy that you have another creative outlet to develop your skills further which they can use during the day.
- Be wary of getting yourself tied up in knots – honesty tends to be the best policy. Not only with your employer but also with your clients.
It depends how much work you've got of your own and how much you'd have to use from your employer. Could you restrict your website portfolio to your own designs and then include something along the lines of 'additional examples of work available on request'. You can then send a PDF out to people if they wish to see more but it won't be on public display. If your portfolio is empty without your employer's stuff in there could you create some other work? Do a few designs for fictional companies.
To get around the issue of your name being different when paying cheques etc you may be best to trade as more of a company name. You need only give your actual name over once you know who you're dealing with.
Would your employer definitely have a problem with you doing freelance work? Provided you aren't nicking clients or adversely affecting their business many employers don't have any objections. I used to even have the occasional print job dropped off to where I used to work – I didn't make a big deal out of it but they knew that I (and others) did a few jobs outside of normal employment.Opus Creative Design Ltd
- I think it really depends on the brand which is you wish to developed in order to established it's foundation to the next level and to create an opportunity to improves it's whole growth.
- No you cant really put up work from your old agency, put a statement on your site that you have other work you have done but cant publish it because they are (its theirs) but you can send nice PDF of it instead, many people using you for freelance will like the idea your business has this integrity to it.
Messing about with your name is a sheepish thing to do...use your name or company name.
- Dangerous ground. You dig a small hole, and then a little a bigger, before you know it... your stuck.
If you have concerns, then that tells me you shouldn't be using it. My advice would be to create some generic examples based on things you have done for real. So take a brief and change the details, create something new in you spare time. Much safer.
Other option would be to get on a freelancing site, like Elance, and build up a small portfolio from there.
You really shouldn't be using examples you don't have the rights to. Assuming your previous employers aren't apes, then switching your names around isn't going to take a genius if they see it.