Table of contents:
- Do not crowd your pages with an overabundance of text, photos, or colors. Keep it simple.
- Organize your work into logical categories and prominently link to each category on the top or side of your page.
- Include a link to a downloadable .pdf version of your resume. Make sure all of your links are live and accurate.
- Explain each item, your involvement in its creation, and the skills you used to create it.
- Quality matters more than quantity. Be selective and only include the items that showcase your best work.
Research your options. Numerous services exist online, including:
- Portfolio template sites (Ex. , , , , , , )
- Free portfolio hosting sites (Ex. , , , , , )
- Blog portfolios (Ex. , , , , )
- Custom portfolios
Custom portfolios require the most hands-on labor to design and maintain. Many of the websites linked above can help you customize your own website, but they may also require a paid subscription to access advanced features. Some of them also offer free accounts with limited features or free full-service accounts for current students. Your online portfolio choice will depend on your budget, time limitations, and website development skills.
Keep in mind that free portfolio sites often come with distinct disadvantages such as poorly designed advertisements, restrictions on file types and sizes accepted for upload, and limited options for customization. However, free sites can be a great resource if saving money and time are a priority for you.
Never leave the design of your portfolio until the last minute. Sloppy organization, design, or content can ruin someone’s impression of you. Be sure to present the best version of yourself by allowing plenty of time to gather your materials, design your website, and troubleshoot any errors.
VIDEO PORTFOLIOS/DEMO REELS
- Highlight only your best work. Give each piece the time it deserves, but keep it short. Animation and game design reels should be 2 minutes or less while editing or sound reels can be longer.
- Lead with your strongest work.
- Only use music if it’s appropriate for your field, and never use copyrighted music without permission.
- Include your name and contact information at the beginning and end of your reel.
- Explain each segment, your role, and the software you used in lower thirds or small text in the bottom corner.
- Show before/after shots or shots of various stages of development if appropriate for your field.
Upload your reel to a professional video hosting site such as Vimeo. If you attach your reel as a .wmv or .mov file, then be sure to include a link to your reel on Vimeo as well in case the reviewer’s computer does not support your chosen file type.
Ultimately, only you can select the best format, or combination of formats, to present your material.
A portfolio requires regular updates in order to reflect new projects, accomplishments, or internships/jobs. Make sure that you:
- Periodically check hyperlinks, contact information, and written content for errors and make changes as necessary.
- Update your portfolio any time that you can demonstrate up-to-date skills and knowledge, especially regarding current trends in your field.
- Ask for feedback from professors, colleagues, and/or mentors.
- Create mock-ups for your portfolio if you are missing examples of one or more of your key skills.
Show your personality. Your portfolio should be an honest representation of your work and who you are.