Portfolio Feedback Request


Would be really helpful if I could get some candid feedback on my portfolio I’m in the process of updating it and can’t think where to start.

I’m also thinking of putting a website together to display it. What is everyone else doing, are PDF portfolios a bit old fashioned now?

Thanks in advance


Hey Sam,

Welcome to the forum! Can you share some background on what stage you’re at, ie. student/recent grad, looking for full time/internship, etc. Any preferences for the type of work you’re trying to get into, corporate/consultancy, tech/lifestyle/softgoods etc. Any extra context is helpful for people to give more structured and relevant feedback.

My two cents while looking through, trying to keep it as candid as possible since you asked for it:

  • Drop the issuu hosting, it’s clunky. I’d just host a pdf that ppl can download/view. I’d focus effort on dialing in portfolio in PDF form first, then dive into the site.

  • No dates on your education section? I’m assuming you’re a recent grad but would be good to add for clarity.

  • Pacing of projects feels really strange, I feel like I’m quickly jumping from one project to the next without any setup or conclusion.

  • Non-Literal Form brief was " Design an object, that through it’s form, dictates how it is to be used and interacted with by the user." Maybe I would react different in person but I feel like your final form is the opposite of intuitive. Honestly it feels more like a complex brain game puzzle. Maybe others react to it different but that’s my initial gut reaction.

  • Bloom project is an interest project brief but I’m left really confused about what exactly it is. It’s a camera that’s recording daily activities and displaying them later to help with memory issues. I think this needs a lot more explanation of the use scenario through a robust story board. The display globe is interesting but feels a little sci-fi without explanation of the technology behind it? Projection, clear OLED? Overall UI/UX feels very un-intuitive for someone with memory issues.

  • Leica project feels like a first year design project. Your brief said that you’re taking the brand values of Leica and applying them to a new product category. If that’s the case I would expect you to clearly state what the brand values are or what you think they are. Instead you only provide some VBL (Visual Brand Language) cues from Leica products and the final outcome looks like a stylized dremel with hard angles and metal casing. Also ergonomics on this looks really bad. Even in the model shots it looks really clumsy and awkward to hold. At the end of the day this has to work as a functional tool, if it looks like it fails in that arena the brand is irrelevant.

  • I think your Carousel lighting project is your strongest project. I like the final outcome, nice variety of ideas explored in multiple ways sketch/model. I get a good sense of how you were working through the project. No need to oversell the idea though, in the brief you say “utilizing innovative removable shades” which is a bit of a stretch, unless there’s something I’m missing. Not every project needs to be innovative, sometimes it’s good enough to just be executed well.

I think you have a lot of old work in here that might not reflect your current abilities and skills. I’d cut the projects that don’t reflect who you are as a designer and focus on building new content that does. Projects like the Leica tool and Coffee maker are hurting your cause and don’t really reflect what I’d expect from a Masters candidate/grad

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