Building a strong portfolio is mandatory for every design professional. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of graphic designers is projected to grow 4% by 2026, but they are expected to face strong competition for available positions.
In such circumstances, your portfolio is pretty much the only thing that can distinguish you from other job applicants and help you generate more income. But how can you create a portfolio that gives you a comparative advantage over your peers?
It’s not an extremely demanding process, but you still have to invest enough time and work into it. Our post will show you seven tricks to build an outstanding design portfolio.
1. Write a Top-Motch Resume
Okay, we know this post is all about making a design portfolio, but don’t forget that job applications always have to include professional biographies. Therefore, task one is crafting a resume that highlights your skills, education, and work experience very clearly and concisely.
Mind the CV structure and don’t burden it with unnecessary elements such as hobbies or personal interests. Focus on what’s really important and let the portfolio speak for itself.
If you don’t want to spend hours working on a resume, we advise you to check out affordable proofreading services from the Papersowl Review list – you will find tons of specialized agencies that can write, proofread, and edit the whole document for you.
2. Gather Projects and Select Them Carefully
Now we turn to the critical part of our article, which is portfolio building. The first thing you need to do is to gather all the design projects you’ve ever done in your life. This includes even your college works because you might find some very bold and interesting ideas in those projects.
Of course, the goal is not to accumulate and present tons of works, but rather to make a careful selection. You need to filter through your projects in order to find the best of the best. If you don’t believe that some of the existing samples are not good enough, don’t hesitate to make corrections and perfect those projects.
3. Turn Projects into Case Studies
Once you’ve selected the finest works, you should rearrange them so as to turn projects into case studies. Why would you bother doing it? The answer is simple: while projects only present the product as it is, case studies allow you to explain how you managed to solve a specific design problem.
That way, you can discuss each project more comprehensively and tell recruiters more about the design process. It helps employers to understand you and improves the odds of getting hired.
4. Showcase Results
This tip goes hand in hand with the previous one since you need to prove the practical value of your work. Namely, modern recruiters are goal-driven and want to know that you are able to deliver concrete results.
If possible, it would be perfect to quantify your achievements. Keep in mind that the goal of your job is to strengthen the functionality of an app or a website. In other words, you have to come up with design products that improve users’ experience and showcase this skill in the portfolio.
5. Curate Projects with Due Attention
Content curation within your portfolio is yet another detail you need to take into account here. Successful job candidates always try to make an application that perfectly suits the requirements of the targeted position. You should embrace the same mindset and curate projects with all due attention. What does it mean?
According to James Marshall, a web designer at the academic writing help agency, it means you should decide whether to pick projects randomly or customize your portfolio: “If you apply for a generic design position, it is better to display professional versatility, but highly specific positions require a more subtle approach. For instance, if a recruiter is looking for mobile app designers, you should focus on this type of projects.”
6. Create Your Own Website
There is no better way for a designer to showcase portfolio than through his/her own personal website. It should not be a big deal for you – WordPress allows you to launch a website within minutes, while you ought to take care of design elements such as templates, imagery, logos, etc. This is the best and by far the most productive way to display your professional capabilities.
7. Make it Easy to Navigate
Regardless of the format of your portfolio, you have to make it easy to navigate. A typical recruiter won’t spend more than a few minutes analyzing your resume and portfolio, so you have to make sure they notice the fundamentals.
Web design writers at the professional custom writing service claim that simple navigation is particularly important if you build a portfolio online: “In this case, each project and category must be clearly visible and available in two or three clicks only.”
When you apply for a design-related position, the only thing that sets you apart from other candidates is your portfolio. It means that you have to create a solid piece of work that clearly proves your professional skills, experience, and expertise.
We wrote this article to help you craft an amazing design portfolio. The tips we discussed above can help you to find your place in the professional sun, so make sure to use them for your next job application.