Portfolio submission for internship

Hey everyone,

A couple of questions for you all.

A major appliance manufacturer (in the top three) has a year long ID internship. They are asking students to submit a portfolio for review, either by mail or email, and then they will schedule interviews with those who made the cut. The interviews may be done over the phone depending on the location of the candidate.

My initial reaction is to send them a teaser with a referral to my online portfolio and say in the cover letter I would be happy to show them my portfolio in person. But I’m second guessing if this is the right thing to do. I kind of feel that may be overstepping what they are asking for.

Does the rule not to show them everything in your portfolio, but give them a -idea- of what you can do apply in this case?

If I do send them my portfolio should I limit it to three or four projects showing the whole process? I’m a junior in school so I don’t have many more strong projects than that to begin with.

Any input would be helpful.


First you don’t need to tell them that you can show them your portfolio in person. They know this and already have a plan for interviews.

In my opinion, the portfolio you show them, for a student internship, should be 90% sketches, sketches, sketches. This will tell them how you think. Eye candy is just that and anyone with a few days to kill on a computer can create that.

Others here may disagree, however.

That’s a tough one.

The goal is to make it to the next round and get called in for an interview?

So I would say only send the VERY best of your best work so they will want to see more. Maybe lots of small thumbnails and sketches (they will see them bigger in person) and then a few hot renderings, color sketches, models.

Question to add- How do you do a iyr internship with school also? do you take a yr off? or is it done after your senior yr, junior yr?

I would show sketches mostly. They will want to see how you think and how you can communicate an idea through our drawings. I would also submit finished works. The website is a bonus, but I would show them a lil more than just a teaser, unless you feel like you can show them a quick look into your SKILLZ-

Good luck man- I would also post your website online here at the forum-so that you can get feedback on that-and just get everything all good–

Thanks for the replies everyone, very pragmatic and gave me some much needed clarity.

I needed the reminder about the importance of sketching. Its easy to be lulled by some eye candy in a portfolio, especially ones own. That said, I think my computer renderings do show a progression and finalization of concept and are not just kicked out for the sake of the sizzle.

The conundrum of course is that if sketches are truly the visualization of thought process they are going to be inherently a little messy and underdeveloped. That can be difficult to put in a portfolio and share with a future employer. Any ideas of how to handle that are welcome.

As for the one year internship, its full time so I would have to take the year off, move there and then finish up with school later. But of course the experience would be invaluable. The website is out there but I haven’t solicited critique for it yet. I am still adding some meat to it. It needs sketches for sure.

Thanks again.

For the sketch situation, I woul look at reducing the size of the sketches, so you might have 5-10 30mm size sketches, then a few nice renderings a bit bigger, and then a final glory shot all on one page. I like a lot of info on a page though so I’m a bit biased.