Inspiration

Helping people earn a living doing what they love

Envato’s global community of over eight million creatives reached new heights.

Envato’s global community of over eight million creatives reached new heights.

Collectively, sellers across Envato have earned over $500 million. Those sellers are breaking geographic and educational barriers. All over the world, Envato’s community members are carving out the lives they want to lead by following their own rules. They are working when and where they want, on the projects that they’re passionate about.

They are providing top quality products and services to a savvy pool of buyers. Through the Envato marketplace, superior themes, audio tracks, video files and more are utilized for a vast array of high calibre projects, including major motion pictures, podcasts, websites, apps and much more.

Here are a few stories from our community members about how they’re earning a living doing what they love through Envato:

How to decide where to live, when you can work anywhere

SpaceStockFootage seller Scott Edington

Being a digital freelancer has provided Envato Market sellers with the ability to live a nomadic lifestyle. Last year, SpaceStockFootage seller Scott Edington was ready to move on from Spain, where he had lived on and off for a number of years, and was seeking a new adventure. He had a list of requirements he would like for his new home (not too hot and not too cold!), but as far as his work is involved all he needed is a reliable internet connection. Scott asked his fellow community members for recommendations on where to live next.

With a steady monthly income from stock sales, I can take a break from the freelancing side of things, knowing that my bank account will be recharged every month

While many people purposely seek careers that allow them to travel, motion graphics and VFX was work that Scott says he  “fell into by accident”. When he found himself out of work he put his time to good use. “I’d always been interested in visual effects and motion graphics, so I read books, followed courses, watched tutorials and made my own crazy/fun videos,” Scott says. After working on a video project for a friend, he started freelancing, and his motion graphics career grew from there –  a career highlight was having his work featured on the Netflix series House of Cards!

Scott headed off from Spain to Norway, the USA, Copenhagen, Thailand, Vietnam, and is now located in Siem Reap, Cambodia. “I’m not sure where I’m heading next, but I’d like to get to Bali, Japan, Australia, South America, Africa and explore a bit more of Europe,” Scott says.

Photo credit: Scott Edington.
Photo credit: Scott Edington.

“As a freelancer, I’d never be able to go off travelling if it wasn’t for Envato. As most freelancers know, you’re always looking for the next paycheck, and any extended amount of time off can be hard to schedule/fund; unless you’ve got plenty of savings. With a steady monthly income from stock sales, I can take a break from the freelancing side of things, knowing that my bank account will be recharged every month.”

As a result of the forum thread Scott posted he has made contact with a number of Envato Market sellers in the community, although he has yet to meet them.

“I’m hoping there might be an Envato meetup or two that I can swing by if I’m in the area.”

Digital nomads sell their home for a family working holiday adventure

Web designers DT Baker

Married couple Dave and Hayley, of DT Baker, set up their own small business after meeting at a large web firm. After catching the travel bug, they were at a crossroads. They could hire staff, get an office and continue to grow the business, or try something else that would allow them to work from anywhere with increased flexibility. They chose the latter and started selling web design and PHP programming on ThemeForest in 2009.

“When that little $0.00 in the top right corner ticked over to $2.00 my world changed right before my eyes. This was our pivot point. We could make money while we slept,” Dave says.

We had found the perfect way to work and travel.

Dave and Hayley threw all their energy into creating themes, PHP scripts and WordPress plugins to sell on Envato Market. The fruits of their labour were evident when they took their first working holiday. “We were answering emails and creating new items one day, then sightseeing the next,” says Dave. “We had found the perfect way to work and travel.”

DT Baker with his family (and his caravan).
DT Baker with his family (and his caravan).

Last year, Dave and Hayley took the working holiday to new heights by selling the family home and travelling along the East Coast of Australia for nine months with their two young children.

The daunting prospect of packing up and moving was liberating for the family. “The biggest thing I learned from the trip is how few possessions you need to live happily,” says Dave.

“I really didn’t know how the four of us would go with only a handful of things in the van. It is really refreshing to not be surrounded by so many material goods, and we’re all much happier for it.”

Dave says he and Hayley still throw around the idea of going back into an office job once their children hit school age in a few years time. But for now, they are relishing the opportunity to spend quality time with the family while still been able to work from anywhere with only a laptop. They hope to take another extended working holiday when their children get a bit older, and perhaps visit some of the larger tech conferences overseas while they’re at it.

Creators see their work evolve

Motion graphics artists sonarafilms and Puk

The people behind the items sold on Envato Market know the satisfaction of seeing their ideas come to life only too well. By creating and packaging their own work, sellers can see how different end users take their creation and make something new with it.

Alejandro Peirero, also known as sonarafilms, has enjoyed seeing his motion graphics and other files put to use by creatives all over the world.

“Over the years, some incredible things have happened to me working with Envato,” says Alejandro. “Lego used one of my files to promote my son’s favourite toy line, and Amnesty International used one of my templates to make a documentary about Tiananmen Square.”

Lego
A still from the Lego feature, ‘Hero Factory Jaw Blade‘, that used Alejandro’s work.

For Alejandro, one of the best things about freelancing is being able to work exclusively on the creative side of work. “I can organize my work and pick and choose the freelance gigs I really want to do,” says Alejandro. “With VideoHive, you can focus exclusively on the creative side of things, something that gets lost on your day to day freelance work.”

Motion Graphics creator Jurriaan Hos, known as Puk on Envato Market, was thrilled to see his work in a video clip for Fifth Harmony – Worth It ft. Kid Ink. So far the clip, featuring his Stock Market Ticker 2 motion graphics file, has been viewed over a billion times.

“I really like that it’s been put to good use,” Jurriaan says. “But I don’t claim any credit over the success of the video. What the client did with it made it successful.”

Digital world opens doors for all people

Graphic designer Arnab Kumar Halder

Envato seller Arnab Kumar Halder was struck down by Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) at the age of five. After seeking treatment and initially making progress, he was then struck by a deadly disease, twice, leaving him 95% physically challenged. He managed to complete high school, which was a challenge in his rural Indian hometown, but further education seemed impossible.

Arnab’s designs include flyers, resume templates, and more.

Without the use of his legs, Arnab spent a lot of time in front of his computer. His workspace is specially set up to accommodate his disability: he uses his right hand to type on an onscreen keyboard and he controls a secondary mini keyboard with three fingers on his left hand. He found tutorials to help him learn the principles of design. He began to blog and freelance, meeting others who were earning their living selling their services online.

This year Arnab had his first item approved on Envato Market. He now plans to sell items on Envato Market for his full time job, and is excited about the opportunities the future holds. “You give me light in my life. I can’t tell you more. I am speechless.”

Driving a new way of doing business

The global digital economy continues to grow, with the European Commission describing it as “the single most important driver of innovation, competitiveness and growth.” As businesses across the globe strive to stay abreast of online growth, digital freelancers are helping people get quality work done faster and more affordably.

Creators worldwide are empowered to run their own businesses, proving that employment no longer fits the 9 to 5, Monday-to-Friday model that dominated the 20th century.

Photo credit: DT Baker.
Photo credit: DT Baker.

A marketplace and ecosystem model like Envato has offered extra stability to this generation of digital nomads, who can earn a steady, ethical income from a product which can be purchased again and again by enthusiastic buyers – while working to develop new creations at their own pace. Sellers set their own prices and Envato does not use an auction or bidding model for jobs, which can sometimes see creatives unpaid for work they’ve completed.

For 10 years, Envato has helped drive this new economy by brokering relationships between creative sellers and buyers in need of products and talent for their own creative and digital products. Envato is committed to this positive disruption, working to create even more ways for people to accelerate their success online.

Featured image: Great Ocean Road. Photo credit: DT Baker. 

Read about our $500M milestone in community earnings.


Selina Ife

About the Author Selina Ife

Selina is a communications specialist at Envato.