Q. I am a graphic designer and I’m constantly being asked by potential clients for examples of my work. I’m wondering if I need a portfolio attached to my website or separate from my website or attached to my resume—what is the best way to handle examples?
A. There is no one way to provide a portfolio of your work. For one freelance writer, I added a page to his resume with links to magazine articles and blogs he ghostwrote. Many individuals in the woodworking and construction industry post before-and-after examples of their work on their website. Many artists have two websites: one for their 9-to-5 careers and one for their artistic work.
Any type of portfolio, however, should include:
- Examples of your current work as well as past achievements
- Relevant biographical information about you, including what drives you in your field
- Awards, testimonials, or recommendations
- Press releases or references to articles where you are mentioned
- Your resume or CV, including proofs of relevant degrees or certifications
You may need a portfolio not only for attracting potential employers or clients, but for reminding everyone—including yourself!—of your accomplishments. You may want to adjust your portfolio to match the job on offer or you may want to create sections of the portfolio dedicated to a specific audience (industry or client interest, for example)–organization and easy access are key.
You might need a physical portfolio to take on job interviews. Just make sure it is interesting and relevant and not overwhelming. One technical writer went to an interview lugging four binders showing past examples of her work and one technical illustrator applied at a manufacturing company with a portfolio of nude drawings. Certainly, both attracted attention but they did not consider the company’s or the interviewer’s needs.
Because a resume is an important part of any portfolio package, please contact Robin’s Resumes to make sure your resume fits with the image you want to project for future employers and clients.