A lot of potential clients will ask to see your work before deciding to work with you.
Having a portfolio ready to go makes showcasing your work a lot easier, for both you and the client, over sending them multiple documents.
Your portfolio will showcase and highlight samples of your best work and projects you’re most proud of.
Especially as someone who works online, a portfolio is a great way for a potential client to get a snapshot into the quality of your work, what results they can expect, and, maybe most importantly, whether they actually like and resonate with the work you do. That last point is super important because if a client hires you blindly and doesn’t actually vibe with what you’re putting out there, your professional relationship will be stressful, and nobody wants that.
Generally speaking, especially if you’re, for example, ghostwriting for a client, it’s a good rule to either have a clause in your contract that you reserve the right to use your work in your portfolio. When in doubt, ask your client for permission!
Showcasing your graphic and web design
Graphic and web design tend to go hand in hand, with some seriously talented people lending their skills to both.
Obviously, having your own website looking and running well is the first step to these kinds of portfolios, but when you’re showing off your other work, there are a few ways to do this.
DNK student, Birte Kahrs, is a graphic designer and visual branding strategist. Her portfolio is clean looking on a separate page of her website, with each design linked to what the project was about and her role in it.
Another example of a website portfolio comes from DNK student, Monika Rabensteiner, who has her graphic and web design portfolio on the main page of her website. Again, each image links to an explanation of what the project was and her role in it.
But even as a graphic and/or web designer, you don’t have to have your portfolio on your website. You can create a separate Google Drive folder for your portfolio, just like the talented artist and graphic designer from the Inner Circle, Alexis Wright, has done. She’s even included her resume/CV as the first thing you see when she sends the link.
This proves that you don’t necessarily need a website to show off your badass work, so get the word out there!
This all looks great, but…
If you don’t have the capacity to create a separate portfolio, you can always create a blog on your website with quick and easy references to just a few examples of your work. This is a great option when you’re just starting out and want potential clients to see something.
If you are yet to create a website for yourself for whatever reason, there’s nothing stopping you utilizing the power of social media to portray some of your finest achievements. Canva is a good tool for creating beautiful infographics, social media graphics and even animated social posts to share on your profiles.
Inner Circle student, Ren Caldwell, took imperfect action when she created a few blog posts highlighting her talents. This is a perfect example of working with what you have and not letting a lack of portfolio hold you back from anything.
Armed with all this portfolio knowledge, are you ready to create a portfolio potential clients will absolutely love?