Portfolio Review - David Hotard

Hey guys,

I’ve spent some time recently polishing some of my student work given I am graduating in December. I would appreciate any feedback on my web portfolio, but to be brief, what are my weaknesses that I need to work on and what are my strengths that I can highlight? To get an idea what I’m going for; I am most interested in applying for jobs/internships at either small ID firms that see a variety of projects or a corporate setting that suites my interests (triathlon or other sporting gear, tools, or cooking to name a few) Thanks!

Portfolio: http://www.davidhotard.com

Hey David,

We met at the IDSA conference this spring. I remember seeing your bike project in your portfolio there and promising to send you my thesis on bike messengers when I finished it. (That’s on my web site now if you feel like looking at it.)

The first thing I noticed in your portfolio is that the logo images for each project on the main page don’t give viewers much of an idea of what the project actually is. You might consider switching those to photos of the final product. (Maybe with the logo overlayed on the photo.)

With your bike project, I noticed something that I’m often guilty of too- you jump from an ideation sketch page directly to making a final prototype, without showing any refinement of the concept you selected (storage in the wheel). It might be good to show a few more sketches and Cad model iterations before the final prototype.

The stapler design is epic. I like the thinking, and that the color and form seem to fit the environment you chose. (Elementary School) It seems a little odd to end on the video showing the mechanics rather than a render. Maybe move the render that’s now at the top of the page down to the bottom? I think a render (or photo, just what ever your final presentation images are) helps signify the end of a project.

Same thing with the oxygen concentrator. I really like exploded views too, but you might want to follow that exploded view with an in-context shot of the final product.

I had a phone project that was in progress on my site for a while, but at a portfolio review one of the reviewers told me I should just take it off till it’s done. I think that’s good advice, so you don’t make people click on it and then have to hit “back” because there’s actually nothing to look at. (You have a render, but unless the render is really epic, I don’t think it means much without process showing how you got there.)

Overall skill-wise, I think sketching is your greatest weakness. (Same as me…) The photoshop grey background and white highlighting helps the sketches you have, but there’s still some visible roughness in the lines.

I hope that’s helpful!

Hey Matthew,

I remember meeting you; I’ll definitely check out your thesis!

Thanks for your feedback. I’ve had that debate about the logos; I may try and create a hover state to show a rendering or vice versa. Perhaps the rendering should be the main image for those viewing the website on touch screens. My reasoning for the logos is to display my interest in branding and marketing which I have applied to my projects, but I definitely do see your point.

I agree on the sketches and renderings that you said I am lacking as well. I think I’ve started to realize that now after I’ve had sometime to quit looking at it and come back to it without having the obvious flow of the project ingrained in my mind. I’ll get to work on that to fill in those gaps.

Again, I’ve had that debate over the phone project as well. Do I have an in progress project or an awkward gap on my layout? Haha, I think the answer is just get the phone project up, which should be coming to completion soon.

Agreed on the sketches, maybe it’s a tech school thing. Thanks again for your feedback; I appreciate getting some new eyes on my portfolio. Best of luck to you!