How to build a portfolio for creative jobs
A good portfolio is an indispensable tool for creative professionals. It doesn't matter if you're a graphic designer, web designer, illustrator, or writer – employers want to see your skill set and previous work before they take on a new hire. But how do creatives get their portfolios looking as polished and professional as possible? That's where we come in. We've compiled some tips for prospective creatives who are considering building out their portfolios. We have even included some examples of creative portfolios if you're looking to emulate someone.
What is a Creative Portfolio?
A portfolio is a collection of examples of your work that you can show to potential employers, customers, and clients. It's the easiest way to showcase your skills and experience. It's also very important to document that work in a professional manner, as it'll allow others to better see the quality of your work.
Why Creative Portfolios are Important
A creative portfolio makes your work easier for others to see. You can engage with a wider community of prospective clients, customers and employers. Creative portfolios are also an effective way to promote yourself and inform potential clients of your skillset and experience.
Portfolios can also be used as a form of self-promotion, driving traffic your way online or via social media. Your potential clients, customers and employers will then be able to learn more about you and your skills.
As more and more people shop online, the presence of a portfolio is essential to providing new opportunities for success. It's a great way to establish your brand, so that whenever someone sees your work or name it will automatically evoke ideas and emotions about you, your business and even your personality.
Who Should Build a Creative Portfolio and Why?
If you're a creative, you should build a portfolio. It's the easiest way to show your work to potential employers, clients, or customers. It's one of the most effective ways to gain new opportunities in your career, regardless of what kind of business you're in. Your portfolio will allow you to showcase your past projects and previous work.
You don't have to hand over files and send out emails for requests for proposals (RFPs). You can simply put together a nice portfolio with sample images and descriptions that show off your craft.
You'll also need to build a portfolio if you want to further your career as a creative, or if you want to show off some of your more unique skills in your field. Even if you think all jobs are the same, different employers will have different needs and expectations for each job. When you build a creative portfolio, you can tailor it to each specific industry.
What to consider when building a creative portfolio
When it comes to creative portfolios, there are different types of portfolios. Should you create a portfolio for every job? No. You can build a portfolio that's specific to certain jobs. For example, you may decide to build out your personal portfolio primarily for business and finance jobs. However, you can also create a more general creative portfolio that you can show off on social media and the like.
Creative portfolios are very different than your average resume or CV. They offer a much more artistic and creative outlet to showcase your work. The key is to make it look professional, so you don't want to put too much of your own personality into it. The same goes for online portfolios, whether they're on Behance, Coroflot or any other site that allows you to build out a portfolio. Here are some of the things that you should consider when creating your creative portfolio:
1. Be Objective
When building a creative portfolio, it's best to be objective. This is important when you're deciding whether to include or exclude certain works. Be sure that every work included in your portfolio has been clearly labelled with information such as project name, your role in the project, client name and the year of completion. You can include a short description as well to explain what your role was in the project.
2. Use Your Best Work
When you're creating your portfolio, be sure to include some of your best work. You can easily do this by using professional images or videos. Just make sure that you don't over-do it in terms of the number of images and videos that you include. You don't want to overwhelm prospective clients or employers while they're trying to assess your work.
3. Provide Context
You should always provide context for your work. This can be in the form of a brief description, or even a paragraph describing the project. You can also include relevant links to your website so that potential employers can see more about you and your work.
4. Don't Include Personal Information
When you're building out a creative portfolio, it's best to avoid mentioning anything personal such as names, phone numbers and addresses. You might think it's a good idea to include your full name and email address but this can backfire and cause problems when you apply for jobs.
5. Use a Professional Font
When writing your content, you'll want to use the same font that you'd use in your business or personal messages. There are a lot of fonts out there to choose from, but we recommend using Lucida Grande (Lucida Sans Unicode) or Lucida Sans.
6. Be Consistent
You'll want to be consistent when it comes to your style. Your message and your voice will be very important here, so don't deviate from your normal writing style.
7. Link to Your Content
When you're building out your portfolio, you should always link out to the content that you're including in the portfolio. This allows potential employers and clients to easily find more information about all of your past work with a click of a button.
8. Add More Content
When you're building out your creative portfolio, you may think that it's a good idea to include more than one item. However, keep in mind that the more items you add, the larger your portfolio will be and the harder it will be for clients to find what they're looking for. This is especially true if you have a lot of items that are similar in nature. In this case, add just one item and work from there.
9. Avoid Photos with Your Face
When you're building out your portfolio, we recommend that you avoid including any photos of yourself. This is especially true if you're building a full creative portfolio that's meant to show off past projects at various companies.
10. Include References
When it comes to adding references, it's best to include your client list rather than just your own contact info and email address. This way, you can offer a link directly to your portfolio and prospective employers will have an easy time finding the links they need.
11. Focus on Specific Jobs
When you're building out your portfolio, focus on specific jobs. You can target different industries or roles that you've had in the past. This makes it easier for prospective employers to see what types of jobs you've had and what your experience is like.
12. Be Consistent with Your Colour Palette
You should be consistent with your colour palette. This is especially true if you're building one creative portfolio and you plan on sharing it across different platforms like Behance and LinkedIn. The last thing you want to do is confuse employers or prospective clients who are looking for specific jobs in a specific industry.
13. Add a Bio
When you're building out your portfolio, you can add a bio that includes an overview of your career. Be sure to include a few keywords in this bio so that prospective employers or clients can easily find all of your work.
14. Use Links to Display Experiences
You should always use links to display experiences in the past, rather than listing and describing them on your page. This makes it easier for prospective employers to find them, and it will also help you build a stronger brand in the creative industry.
15. Be Consistent with Your Font
You should be consistent with your font. This is especially true if you're building one creative portfolio and you plan on sharing it across different platforms like Behance and LinkedIn. The last thing you want to do is confuse employers or prospective clients who are looking for specific jobs in a specific industry.
16. Use Images of Your Work
When you're building out your portfolio, it's best to use images of your work. You can do this with a combination of screenshots, photos and actual video. This helps prospective employers see what your work is like and it also helps to build a stronger brand in the creative industry.
17. Don't Use Too Many Categories
When you're building out your portfolio, it's important not to use too many categories. If you do, it can be hard for employers and clients to find the items that are most important to them. You also don't want to use too many categories if you don't have anything relevant to each item. When you use too many categories, it can make your portfolio feel disorganized and unprofessional.
18. Introduce a Brand Story
When you're building out your portfolio, it's important to introduce a brand story. You can do this in the form of short paragraphs that describe who you are and what your work is like. This will help prospective employers see what your brand is like and it will also help them understand how valuable you are as an employee, or freelancer.
19. Have Your Website Linked
If you have a personal website or some kind of web presence, we recommend having a link to it on your portfolio page. This will allow potential employers to learn more about your brand, and it also shows that you're serious about landing a position.
20. Add Social Media Links
When you're building out your portfolio, it's best to add social media links for prospective employers and clients. This will provide them with a way to learn more about your brand and the type of work that you've done in the past.
Here are some tips that you should keep in mind when you're building out your portfolio:
1. Create One Portfolio per Platform
When you're building out your portfolio, it's important to create only one portfolio per platform. You don't want to have a disorganized mess on any of the major platforms, so it's best to focus on one at a time. When you have time, you can always go back and build more portfolios as well.
2. Be Patient When Building Your Portfolio
It's important to be patient when you're building out your portfolio. If you're in a rush, you may make some critical mistakes that can put your career in jeopardy. With this said, it's best to take your time when doing so and create a portfolio that showcases the best of your work.
3. Focus on the Projects That are Most Relevant
When you're building out your portfolio, it can be tempting to include large amounts of projects from the past. We recommend that you focus on the projects that are most relevant and hireable to prospective employers. We also recommend that you look for projects that are unique and unique to your own brand. This way, potential employers can see what kind of work you're capable of doing and it helps to build a stronger brand in the creative industry.
4. Switch Between Design and Creative Portfolios
You should create one design portfolio and one creative portfolio. This way, you'll be able to show off all of the work that you've done in the past. You will also be able to switch between them as necessary, which will help to show prospective employers what you can do.
5. Include Keywords in Your Categories
When you're building out your portfolio, we recommend that you include a few keywords from each category. This will help prospective employers and clients to find items that are important to them. You should do this on both the Behance portfolio and your CV or LinkedIn profile.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What Skills Do Employers Look for in Portfolios?
Employers look for skills like communication, problem solving, planning and design principles. If you're applying for a role that is creative in nature, then it's also important to show off your breadth of skills. When you create a portfolio that focuses on these skills, prospective employers can see how valuable you are as an employee and how well you would fit into their industry or company.
2. How Long Should Portfolios Be?
Portfolios should be about 300 words to 500 words for most people. If you're applying for a creative role, it's important to show off your breadth of skills, rather than just your strongest skill. When you create portfolios that are around 300 words or less, it will help employers see what kind of skills you have and it will help them to understand the type of work that you can do.
3. How Long Should Design and Creative Portfolios Be?
Design portfolios should be around 1000 words or less. Creative portfolios should be around 500 words or less. If you're applying for a role that is more creative in nature, it's important to show off your breadth of skills, rather than just your strongest skill. Having smaller portfolios will help employers see what kind of skills you have and it will help them to understand the type of work that you can do.
4. How Should I Handle Portfolio Growth?
If you're growing your portfolio, we recommend that you keep it at a manageable level. When you have too many items in your portfolio, it can be hard for employers to find what they're looking for and it can be difficult to show off the best of your work. When you have more time and when you've grown, then we recommend adding more items to your portfolio.
5. How Should I Handle Portfolios on LinkedIn?
When you're building out a portfolio on LinkedIn, we recommend that you add the same project descriptions as you would to your Behance or portfolio page. We also recommend that you add a few keywords from each category, so that potential employers will be able to find specific items.
6. How Should I Explain My Skills on My Portfolio?
It's important to explain the skills that make up your portfolio. You don't have to include a lot of fluff, but it's important to add some extra details about the skills that you have and why they're relevant. For example, if you've had a lot of experience with typography, then it's best to include a few details about why it's useful in your portfolio.