Thoughts about a resume

I was wondering what makes a good resume as far as appearance goes. Should it be simple…or should it be flashy?

im just putting my collateral stuff together and am struggling with the same questions.
all of the advice i have heard has been “it depends”

stuff like -

who are you wanting to work for - know your audience etc…

it can be simple and still look good.

i’ve come to undertand also that a branding element through all of you’re deliverables helps alot.

be good to see what others with more experience have to say.

you should keep it as brief and as straightforward as possible, as far as the information.

I think from there, you could be as creative as you wanted. Let the design of it describe you. Are you colorful, vibrant? Do natural colors, or type of paper show your environmental awareness? It can be subtle and be you

This resume of mine is for a footwear recruiter…She said only to give her my resume…so does that mean currently without my portfolio work?

Resumes should be clear and to the point. Graphics should be minimal, but enough to get someone to notice your resume out of a stack. Excellent use of type is a must.

I would never give a resume without some kind of attached teaser sheet. If you’re sending in electronically, I would suggest sending a PDF that contains both your resume and another page or 2 with brief samples of your work. You should also provide a link to an online portfolio whether it’s Coroflot or your own personal site.

I’m having trouble as far as graphics go…any suggestions where to get ideas???

a resume is a resume. if they wanted a portfolio or teaser, they’d ask for it.

keep it simple, easy to read, but also add some design and personality to it. when i get a resume from a designer and its in default word template form, its rare i look much more at it. at the same time, when i get a resume that filled with extra junk that doesnt let me scan it quick for relevant info, its also passed aside.

think of a good CV as having to levels of interface.

  1. first impression. from 1 ft away- overall layout, color, tyopgraphy, impression.

  2. content while reading- organization, text content, (no typos!), phrasing and info.

    think of a good CV as an ad for you. it should #1 communicate your experience literally (the purpose of a CV), and #2 should draw the user/reader in and communicate your personality and style.

as an example, here’s a recent one of mine-

first page-
contact info

overview of design philosophy


current/recent experience

second page-

past experiences




ive tried to use color an a personal logo (and title) to show a little bit of difference without interfering with the overall readability and layout. at the same time, it is unique, and memorable thanks to the color that links with my cards and portfolio layouts.


But in the US, we use resumes, and they are expected to only be one page.

not really true. dunno where you heard that.

resume/CV is the same thing. CV is just a fancy name for it. resumes can be more than 1 page depending on your experience. If you are just outta school and have a 3 page resume, dont. after 6 years or so, 2 pages should be fine. anything more unless youve been in the biz for 40 years is a little bit much (and even then, there likely wouldnt be much relevance to what you did 40 years ago…).

bottom line, you resume/CV should be full of useful stuff. dont make it 2 pages to look more impressive if you’ve got your high school paper route listed.

if there is a posting that does ask for a 1page resume, also be sure to follow it. nothing says “garbage pile” like not following instructions. I also have a 1 pager version if need be, but i dont think ive ever had the need for it.


rkuchinsky, very nice layout!

I personally do a 2 page CV on 2 formats – 1 in pdf which I prefer and the other in word format. I place in my career goal in brief with work experience on top of my education and accomplishments. I add in a brief line of other interests especially in sports and other creative tasks that are worth mentioning with references to all the information I put in.

Most important of all, when you write your CV/resume, it shouldn’t be just another CV but something that represents yourself as a person. In short, don’t just write your CV, design it.

well put. :slight_smile:

I prefer them to be clean, simple and to the point. Tastefully designed but not over the top. attention to detail, eye catching, but not distracting. I’ve never been much one for the “Objective” “Goals” or “interests” section, you want a job in a design group and like long walks on the beach, great, let’s get to the info though…

Richard, I guess I assume that anyone asking for resume advice would be on the younger side, not have enough experience to justify a two-page resume. Indeed, it is acceptable for people with a very rich experience to spill over to another page. But I would think that anyone with that much experience would be able to figure out their resume on their own.

And there is a distinction typically between a resume and a CV in the US- a resume is shorter and tailored towards a job, whereas a CV is required for academic jobs, and includes a wider range of information and accomplishments, due to which a greater length is acceptable.

OK, some truth to that.

As for only younger designers needing help for a resume though, i wouldnt really agree. If anything, i’d say ive seen worse resumes from more experienced designers than young ones. I’m talking about straight MS word resumes that look like they were last done in 1985 with a typewriter or word processor.

To be honest, I wasn’t really aware of the difference in terms of CV and resume. Everywhere I’ve never looked at the academic field and have never heard of the difference, but point taken. thanks for the clarification.