Welcome to our new series Ask a Recruiter! Our Denver Creative Talent Representative Lauren Friesen will be answering your burning questions related to job hunting, resume submission, portfolios and more.
Q: Help! I need to make an online portfolio and I don’t know where to start.
A: I recall the first time I built an online portfolio and spent hours trying to figure out how to change one background color. Much wine was consumed that evening. If you don’t come from a web design background, it can feel confusing to be faced with so many options!
A great place to start making an online portfolio is Adobe Portfolio or Squarespace. Adobe Portfolio links up to Creative Cloud and allows you to easily access typefaces from Typekit and Google fonts, so you have a ton of great design options. The interface is sleek and you can really have fun playing around with different options. If you want your portfolio to look like your personal brand (and you should) then these two are great places to start.
Behance is another popular option that we see a lot. It’s less customizable, and to me, it doesn’t have as much visual impact. But if you have a huge volume of work, and want to network with other creatives, this might be a great one for you. Behance brings an awesome social networking feature to the table, and allows you to connect with other designers and potential clients, as well as apply for jobs. It’s a great way for a seasoned freelancer to easily upload some work and network, as a backup to their online portfolio. Dribble is similar, though more focused on UI/UX and web. Dribble gives the user an option to promote others’ work and be promoted, which can lead to more exposure. With both, the work must shine through, there are no fancy bells and whistles to hide behind!
Some other customizable options are Wix and Carbonmade. Both are fairly easy to edit, and you can have multiple websites under one account. Both offer a stunning array of customizable templates. This is a great idea if you are a designer/ photographer or a writer/producer. You’ll have the ability to toggle back and forth depending on which portfolio you want hiring managers to see. Format is a great option too, with a dizzying array of pricing plans, and options for the code-literate and illiterate alike.
The bottom line is, you MUST make the maximum amount of impact in the minimum amount of time. Showcase only your best work. Variety is the spice of life here, as well. You have about 3-5 seconds to make a connection with a potential employer or recruiter, so consider your website to be an extension of your amazing and creative personality! Put descriptions in each sample so we can see what you did, and how you did it. Keep it brief, keep it simple, and watch the offers roll in!
Lauren Friesen is a former Art Director turned Senior Talent Representative in Denver, Colorado. When not playing job fairy for Artisan Talent, she enjoys long distance running, interior design, vintage perfume collecting, and reading vast amounts of true crime.