If you aspire to work in a creative industry you’re probably going to be in need of a portfolio almost as much as a CV and cover letters. Portfolios will let potential employers/collaborators know exactly what you’re about and can often be the deciding feature during the application process. Depending on your job, you might even have to take your portfolio with you to an interview and discuss its contents. It is safe to say then that a portfolio is a big deal, but how do you get started on what and how do you know what to include in it. Well, I’m here to give you a little help with some tips and tricks on how to get your portfolio started.
Show Your Best Work
It might seem pretty obvious, but you’d be surprised at how often this advice is ignored. When you’re constructing a portfolio, you should show your best work front and centre, and if you have enough high-quality work to show off, this is all that you should include. While it might seem like you should include lots and lots of work to show absolutely everything you have worked on, it can be off-putting to anyone looking at your portfolio, and it increases the possibility of them missing your best work entirely. Just like with a CV, show the things that are the most relevant and impressive, not every last bit of work you’ve done.
Specialise, but show flexibility
You’ll probably have a style or type of work that you like doing the most, for example, if you’re an artist you might prefer working on paper with charcoal, but it is important that you show an ability to work flexibly and comfortably in different styles if needed. It’s useful for employers or collaborators to see that you’re capable of working in the style they want for their project, so I’d advise showing at least 4 different styles or mediums of work as part of your portfolio.
Get a Portfolio Site
Traditionally creatives might have carried around physical portfolios to send to employers or take with them to interviews, but in the 21st Century, it is massively important that you have a place for your work online. Portfolio websites can be low cost and easy to set up, and they will make it infinitely easier for people to find and see your work. I would still recommend keeping physical copies of your work though, as these can be really useful to show off when you’re meeting people in person.