portfolio feedback

Hey,

I would like you to have a quick look at my portfolio and ask for some feedback.

Be cruel but constructive :wink:

Have you heard the adages, “Less is more” or “Quality over Quantity”? Those apply.

I would like to see a better layout. Right now your current layout is quite congested. Plus, I hate this triptych layout. It makes me want to fold it like a brochure, doesn’t scream portfolio to me. I would also like to see some process for a few of your concepts. Also, immerse me into the environment (means make your images bigger so EYES can see).

So basically change your layout, presentation, and show process. Maybe add some greeting card music too! Yeah don’t do that last one. So nice work. If you do those three things then your portfolio will stand out a lot more.

good luck!

PAGE HIERARCHY - PAGE COMPOSITION - LEAD THE EYE

right now you have lots of images that all seem to have the same level of importance, the bodies of text (lots of text) also seem to have the same hierarchy as all the images, this had resulted in nothing grabbing my attention or pulling me in, I am looking at the pages and not the content, use page composition to lead my eye and tell me the story, what has the most priority/importance and what is supplemental

As has been said before, layout is key in creating a compelling portfolio.

  1. Create a story. Lead the reader through the work by developing a rhythm of intro-process-work.

  2. As such, create more visual interest by varying the size of photos, layout, etc. The current portfolio feels like one you can flip through without stopping. You need to add stop and starts with larger photos, titles, etc. Suggest moving the text to the left or right and adding a few pages in between with larger focus images. Everything now is too even and easy to scan through without really looking at it.

  3. Process. I see no sketches. Even if you addressed the above, it’s not likely I would take a second look.

  4. Didn’t look at it in too much depth, but I think the text can also be better in layout. You have some lines without a blank line between paragraphs, some widows (single word on a line) and other basic typographical errors. Text color also leaves something to be desired, at least in digital form on this resolution.

R

mm… a lot of work to do still :slight_smile:
thanks already for the advice.

I’m trying to make a ‘serious’ or ‘professional’ looking document although I’m convinced this exampleis more interesting to look at… but it’s too busy for me.
(I just selected a random portfolio on coroflot)
This one is showing some text, some sketches, some renders and if possible some real pictures. Which is what you are telling me I should do a bit more (showing some process)

But I don’t like this kind of over-designed graphical portfolios.
I’m trying the ‘less is more’, but it is difficult :slight_smile:

This is also the reason why I used the (boring) triptych layout. It’s not screaming for attention.

If you know some nice examples of non-screaming portfolio on coroflot, I will be happy to hear it :slight_smile:

Overdesigned? I don’t think so. For the most part, I believe Steve Luke’s layouts complement his work. A lot of his designs are for sporty, stylish products (Audi, Puma…) where that sort of layout makes sense. It also gives his portfolio unity, and you can easily distinguish between projects due to the color. What he has that you don’t have is HIERARCHY, as said before. Yours has none.

You say you’re trying to make a serious or professional looking portfolio? I say that Steve’s is more serious/professional than yours. Being cruel here, but yours looks lazy. Really lazy. No thought given to the size/order/placement of images and text (more like what can fit in those columns/copy pasta) nor to the hierarchy of the text, nor to the whitespace/layout of the page. It makes you, as a designer, seem boring, which gives us the impression that your design work must be boring. However, with Steves, we see he is concerned about style, is sporty/playful (shapes/colors!), and knows a thing or two about hierarchy, which is as important in graphic as it is in ID. His shows he cares a lot about his work, and yours doesn’t.

I’m not saying Steve’s is perfect or is the best example, but since you pulled it out and seem to think its “over-designed”, I wanted to point out some things for you to think about. If anything, yours is “under-designed”. Using hierarchy doesn’t mean you are screaming for attention. Look at old Swiss typography posters. I wouldn’t say they’re screaming, but their hierarchy/grid-based layouts make the work easy to understand and a pleasure to look at.

Things you could start with:

  1. Titles! Each page should have a title! I’d like to know what I’m looking at in a quick glance. I don’t want to read your long ass, hard-to-read beige color text. (by the way, fonts with large counters [look it up… its basically the enclosed space in an ‘o’ or an ‘a’] are REALLY hard to read when they’re small, and it’s even worse with the color that you picked… not enough contrast. Pick a serif font for smaller, longer text)
  2. I don’t need to see your contact info on every page. I’m sure if I wanted to contact you, putting it on the first slide is enough.
  3. Man, those labels you have for your pictures (the numbers) are really small and hard to find. Put the captions by the photos, or let the copy tell a story without having to point out what you’re talking about! You’ll find that very few good portfolios have this patent-like numbering (in figure A, I sketched out several profile views… you never see that, I guarantee). Don’t do it! Your layout should allow people to explore the page naturally.
  4. Are you designing for humans? Because I don’t see any. Contextual photos are nice to show scale and (duh) context. I guess it’s not mandatory since a lot of designers like to have clean renders without humans, but something to think about. Less necessary for things like furniture, but for other products, more necessary. I didn’t look at each project because it’s a huge burden on my eyes to read, especially on Coroflot where everything is so small.
  5. Lose the preconception that less-is-more means you have to design less. In fact, you can spend more time designing a simple, clean, GOOD layout than you can with a graphical layout (in the sense that you have portrayed it). Why shouldn’t your work be screaming for attention? With a boring layout, people will just lose interest quickly and chuck it.

Anyway, really long critique, but your attitude about portfolios set something off inside of me. Hopefully that wasn’t too cruel/mean. Apologies in advance. Good luck.

@ tarngerine: Thank you for the profounded feedback and don’t worry if you think it’s cruel :slight_smile: I asked for it and I try to apply the tips in my (next) portfolio.

The last impression I want people to have about me and my work, is that I’m lazy or boring as a designer :blush:

Maybe a small side note from my side about the small fonts: It will be used as a pdf file to mail around or printed on A4, so in a full screen mode it is easier to read… but I get your point.

Thanks again for taking the time to write it all down here, really appreciate it…



(are there positive points to mention at this moment, ones that I can keep??)

um… good thing is that you’re paying attention to consistency, but other than that, it’s just really hard to read, especially with that color font. maybe your work is good? i dont know i never got past the first slide to analyze any of your work… couldn’t read anything without hurting my eyes. sorry :confused:

EXAMPLES

Sam Amis - Coroflot — Design Jobs & Portfolios
Tracy Subisak - Tracy Subisak in Portland, OR
Anh Nguyen - Anh Nguyen, @CREATIVEsession in San Francisco, CA
Rick Hagee - http://www.coroflot.com/public/individual_work.asp?individual_id=110590&

I made an update of my portfolio, you can see it here

I hope it is more interesting to look at :slight_smile: