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How to build a creative portfolio

Starting a freelance career? Trying to land your dream job? Proud of what you’ve made? A slick portfolio is key. In the article below, our friends at Squarespace share tips to create an attention-grabbing professional portfolio along with images of inspiring portfolio design.

How to Build a Creative Portfolio | Global Young Creative Advertising Design Hub

Your portfolio is a snapshot of you

Before you interview, your portfolio is what will make the biggest impression on employers. It’s the fastest way to get a feel for what type of creative you are. That’s why it’s important to display your work in a way that’s professional, concise, and narratively cohesive. What do you want your portfolio to say about you? What should employers take away from it? If someone had only 30 seconds to view your portfolio, would they get a sense of what kind of creative you are?

Open with your best work

The piece that employers are most likely to remember is the one at the beginning of your portfolio. So let your best work make the first impression, and set the tone for the rest of your portfolio. Choose projects that showcase your strengths. You are only as good as your weakest piece.

Your template is just the start

Squarespace is a tool and what you make with it is up to you. The strongest websites push the limits of the templates. Find the template that works for you then customise its fonts, layout, and typography. Injecting code is also a great way to switch things up. 

Your content is your focal point

You know the saying: content is king. Even if you make the world’s most beautiful portfolio, it’s not doing its job if it gets in the way of your work. Design your portfolio around what’s in it and try to make aesthetic choices that emphasize your work. Is it a project gallery or a seamless single page? Either way, your work is what people come to see. Your website is just the frame.

Take a mobile-­first approach

If a recruiter is reviewing resumes, odds are they will see your work on a desktop. But a creative director who is going from meeting to meeting might only have time to view your portfolio on their phone. Every Squarespace template is mobile ­optimised because you never know where or when you’ll need to show your work. 

Capture your personal brand

The more personal your website feels, the more potential clients and employers will feel like they know you. What colours look right? What about typography? What should you title your projects? Decisions, big and small, say as much about who you are as any about page. Make your personality the cornerstone of your brand.

As you grow, so should your website

As you develop your skillset and continue to grow your portfolio, your website should reflect that. Don’t be afraid to make revisions and updates. Take old projects off your site as you complete newer, fresher ones. Get comfortable with the idea that your website is a work in progress and it will always be getting better.

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