Tips for laying out a “graphic design” portfolio

Tonight was the third week of my portfolio class and this was really valuable in my book of useful information so I’m here to share. Thank you Dale Gronso for reviewing this with us!

  1. Be careful with the personal identity details coming throughout the book
  2. Ultimate Goal: SHOW OFF YOUR WORK
  3. Bare minimum descriptions: Only says: client, project + size (putting title only is not good enough. Need to give an idea of how big the products are and descriptions to give people a good idea. Great for when you have to drop off your portfolio)
  4. Must be CONSISTENT! from outline size + color to alignment to spacing. Whatever the rules you set for yourself for the grid of your book… Follow them rigorously.
  5. How do you present that variety through the structure and layout of your page?
  6. Try your best to show your work closest to 100%.
  7. If labeling, do it discreetly
  8. When displaying spreads of magazine, only show a few that really gives the look and feel and if asked, show the whole publication at hand.
  9. If environmental piece is shown, show a scale comparison. (human + object)
  10. Be careful with the drop shadows!!! Make sure it’s nice and subtle.
  11. Description type should be simple, clean and easy to read. Also make sure it’s consistent your personal brand.
  12. Be careful with detail shots if they’re used. Make sure the zoomed in size is at 100%. If you don’t need the detail shot, don’t show it! Don’t do it just because you can.
  13. Descriptions should be roughly the same length, placed in the same place.
  14. Make sure that your space is used effectively. Don’t make the work so small.
  15. Don’t show process on EVERY piece if you’re planning on showing it at all
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