Designer’s Passion That Transformed Her Life

by Jamoza
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Olha Bahaieva

She is Olha Bahaieva, born and raised in Kharkiv, Ukraine. Being the only child in her family, you would expect her to enjoy all the luxury that her family could afford, but no, that’s not a fact in her case. The good thing is that she had a chance to go to school to seek knowledge. Knowledge that always played a crucial role in her decision making in her life. In her whole childhood life she ‘enjoyed’ seeing and experiencing only the tough and ugly side of life. Her parents separated when she was still a student. This was a very big blow to her, both psychologically as well as academically.

Since she had no siblings, a feeling of responsibility kicked into her mind. She knew she had to do something with her life in order to take care of herself and her now single mother. She had to take the responsibility because if not her, then who? This sense of responsibility helped her overcome all the negative thoughts and negative feelings that resulted from her parents’ separation. She gathered herself together and decided to continue with her studies.

At the same time she kept trying to figure out how she could find a way to earn some income for herself and her mother. She thought of starting her own business, but there were many challenges regarding this. Starting a business would require financial investment which she never had. She knew that she had to do something, but she had no idea what.

Olha always had passion in drawing and sketching since childhood. She never knew that this passion of hers would one day be the one to start earning her thousands of dollars every month. She discovered this one day on the web as she was scrolling through design awards website. One day she saw something that attracted her attention. This was some ad on how one could start earning good money from creating UX/UI design portfolio on behance just by visualizing products. She was so happy since designing is what she always loved doing. It was her passion, and now she could earn money from that! And to make it even sweeter, is that she could do all this from home. Seeing this she jumped right into it at once and started with her work.

One of Olha’s design works on behance

In order to jump into IT industry, Olha made 3 niche changes before she got her good results. She started from 3D modelling in design interior sphere as it was what she had studied for. When she realized that it was not working exactly the way she expected, she switched to print design industry. Here, she worked onsite in design studio and created flyers, brochures, magazines, invitation design. But the amount of money she earned from this was not enough to assure herself of a successful life without a feeling of financial insecurity.

She joined a German company called Telenorma. This was the very beginning of her journey in IT direction. The work was totally different and hard. Tools were unknown to her. But the income was really good, and life became easier for her now. So working during the day and learning new tools already twice in her life, she attained the knowledge, that allowed her to create visual design. It was the first little win in her life. After 3 years of such work, she decided to switch to the most complicated niche – UX/UI design. Lots of companies required her to have experienced different working environments and tools more than once. She already had such experience in her life and handled this challenge.

She knew this was her chance and that she had to grab and stick to it. Earning money for doing what you love! What could be more exciting than that? Getting paid for having fun sounded awesome to her. Actually not just her but anyone would really love it. She knew she had to work hard and be smart and that’s exactly what she did and earned a thousand dollars in the first month alone as a freelancer on behance.

Olha’s achievements

  • Today Olha is a professional in Interior design and 3D Modelling, Print design, graphic design and UX/UI design. See here what a great job she is doing today.
  • She has the knowledge of more than 10 designing tools that uses everyday and a wide range of design directions, ranging from drawing, painting, architecture and IT including online marketing. To find out more view her LinkedIn profile here where you will also be able to see all her certificates.
  • She is also a top-level designer, six-time winner and 13-time runner-up of the design contests on 99designs. Find out more about her international achievement here.
  • She has her own publication on design topic explaining much more about design. The publication can also be viewed here.
  • She is a very important member of Toptal.  This is a closed platform for designers. See her here.
  • She has created 9 top rated designing courses that will guide anyone to success as designers. She has arranged her courses in a very systematic manner and made them comprehensible for anyone. The courses can be viewed here.
  • She also uses her knowledge and experience to change lives for the better through her mentoring program. In this program she even offers face-to-face (F2F) mentoring. She has a group of people that she mentors and join the group one only needs to contact her on facebook, instagram, twitter, behance and her personal website.

When asked what motivated her to start the business and keep it going, this is what she said: 

I never received any support from my family when I took this career path. But after my parents divorced I needed to earn a living for myself and my mother in order to keep our lives moving in the same direction as before. The divorce could have been an obstacle, but it made me a quick learner and I’m no longer afraid of facing tough moments in life anymore.

She was very precise and to the point when I asked her for her advice to others who may be facing challenges in their home businesses. This is what she had to say:

Learn and practice. You should always apply what you have learned. Always practise what you have learned and don’t waste your time waiting for tomorrow. If not now then when? And knowledge without application or action is meaningless.

Always do lots of research. The world is advancing every single day in technology and your competitors are advancing too. So don’t be left behind. Do your research and stay updated.

Monitor the social networks and make as many connections as you can. They help in widening your thoughts and ideas. Learn from them.

Market yourself, it is very important. You are responsible for your success and failure. You are in the driving seat. If not you, then who?

Today Olha is enjoying doing what she loves. She is enjoying the freedom that was brought by her decision to start her own business at home, which she actually started without even spending any money. She is happy and only has herself to thank for the important decision she made six years ago. Today Olha is her own boss. When she works, she knows that she does it only for herself and no one else. She is a very good example to anyone aspiring to be successful in online business, especially in freelancing.

You don’t really need to be a designer like her in order to succeed in online business. Just do what you love and show it to the world. There is market for everything in online business. There are many people who love what you do but they have no idea that you can really do it. Olha showed the world what she loves doing and and how well she can do it, and she found people who appreciated it and immediately she started earning from it. If you love it, then you will surely benefit from it, but only if you do and show it. Just take the first step to present it to the world, just like my friend Olha did.

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