I’m fixing up my portfolio so I can apply for some jobs in 2004. I just graduated and haven’t done this before, so I need your help.
Anyway, when presenting your portfolio to a prospective employer, how important is it to also present (or maybe just include) supporting documentation? As in, should I present just the finished outcome of my work, or should I include process? What about CAD work that shows that I know what I’m doing?
I know that “presentation is everything,” I’m just not entirely sure what I’m presenting. While many of the portfolios on Coroflot are nice, they don’t seem very complete. If I was an employer, I think I’d care about process, rather than simply seeing that this kid can use a computer.
Your portfolio is not an ad for the product you have designed neccessary. Although it is important to have some good images to show your designs clearly, it is also important to show your thought process in your portfolio.
Show your sketches, rough thumb-nails to bigger ones, CAD work, lay-out work, color explorations, etc. How you want to show these is up to you, and this is one of the area where you can be creative.
Coroflot portfolios are not complete by any means. I think most people post their work samples to give prospective employers some idea of what they are capable of.
As somebody who’s reviewing dozens of portfolios every year (which is about 10% of portfolios that make it through a HR pre-screening process), I am looking - in a nutshell - for two things: breadth and depth.
Breadth in range of projects, tools and visual vocabulary needs to be demonstrated. In terms of depth, I like to see thorough process, problem solving, asking the right kind of questions, good exploration.
Once that is demonstrated, I am looking for the “whoa!” - what sets this portfolio apart from the previous or the next one. Is there anything new and fresh in here or did I see that a year ago in a design book? Is this run-of-the-mill solid or does this person dare to experiment? What did he/she learn from trying something different?
I think you’re on the right track. Demostrate your versatility.
One last pointer: if that flash or director movie is (a) incompatible with my computer or (b) takes longer than 20 seconds to load, you’re out of luck. I’d rather look through a clean book printed on an ok printer on reasonably crisp paper.
Also, there is absolutely no need to demonstrate your shop skills by making your own portfolio case. I am not hiring for the model shop, nor do we design portfolio cases on a regular basis.