Discover tips for creating an effective portfolio allowing you to display your work online.
Creating a portfolio of your work is a big task that is almost required in order to land a project or job. Once you have enough work to display in a portfolio, here are a few things you should keep in mind when creating a portfolio for web work.
Limit Other Content
It is best to create portfolios as separate sites with a different design. This way people will see that you value your work immensely by taking the time to create its own unique design. Portfolios also look more professional without banner ads and links to non-portfolio content.
Keep it Simple
The idea of a portfolio is to show off your work. If it is overly complex and full of graphics, it will distract the viewer too much and no longer be effective. Keep it simple, quick loading and easy to navigate.
If you have a lot of work, try to cut it down using categories on separate pages. Categories will help viewers find what they may be interested in seeing by easing navigation. Sample categories could include, logo design, websites, banners, and photography.
Thumbnails are simply smaller images of the final product. When displaying work in a specific category, use thumbnails in preference or addition to text when linking to the bigger image. Try to keep thumbnails small enough that viewers are able to understand what they are without using large images with long load times. Thumbnails will also help your portfolio look more professional.
Explain Each Piece
After a viewer has clicked on the individual work they would like to view, always explain the work and its purpose. Describe what the project is, how you went about completing it and any specific outcomes.
Display Contact Information
While often you will be directing people to your portfolio, there will be cases where potential clients will stumble across it by themselves. If they like your work, they will want to get in touch with you. If you have no method of contact, they simply won't bother. Assign a separate page for contact information and offer various forms like an email address and form, so they can pick and choose.
Being affiliated with other sites is great; however don't use any link banners as they make a portfolio appear unprofessional. In this case, text links are your best bet.
Resume/About Me Page
It is always nice to include an about me page that explains who you are and what some of your skills are. This would be a great opportunity to include a resume as an html document or as a downloadable .pdf file.
Hopefully this article has given you the groundwork to create your own portfolio. Below are sites that provide examples of completed portfolios.