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February 25 2014

18:14

February 24 2014

14:18

February 19 2014

14:12

February 18 2014

14:05

January 06 2014

21:44

7 Vital Elements of a Good Web Design Portfolio

How do you show prospective design clients what you can do? The best way to show clients what you can do is to show them what you've already done. Direct them to your online portfolio. If you're a new freelance web designer, creating an online portfolio is one of the very first things that you need to do. As soon as you complete a project that you can be proud of, you can start to build your portfolio. If you're an experienced freelance web designer hopefully you already have a portfolio. However, don't make the mistake that many experienced freelancers make and let your portfolio sit untouched for months--or even years. Your portfolio should be a changing online document that always highlights your very best work. portfolio2 On Vandelay Design Blog we share many examples of what a good portfolio should look like. Here's one post with 50 Awesome Portfolio Websites. Here's another post with 25 Beautiful Portfolio Website Designs. While looking at the portfolios of other web designers can certainly give you some good ideas, it's also helpful to have a checklist of elements you should include on your own portfolio. That's what this post is for. This post lists seven vital elements that every good web design portfolio should include.

November 13 2013

11:14

New work: LeFLOW

Parisian fashion designer Lionel Le Floch asked me to create his trademark.

LeFLOW identity
Photography by Dirk Alexander (models.com)

We worked together for about four weeks, and here’s a quick look behind the project scenes.

Tags: Portfolio

October 30 2013

17:18

October 21 2013

13:26

October 08 2013

08:00

25 of the Best Photographer Portfolio Websites

Web designers often browse through portfolio websites of other designers for inspiration and ideas that can be used in their own work. Photographers, like designers, have a need to display an attractive portfolio for their websites visitors, and many photographers have excellent portfolio sites. The portfolio site showcases the work to potential clients, usually provides some biographical information about the photographer, and makes it easy for people to contact the photographer.

In this post I’d like to take a look at some of the best. Here you’ll find photography sites that are well designed and also showcase amazing photos. You’ll see a few different styles and approaches. Many use a large background image or a large slider to showcase the photos at their best. Others use many smaller thumbnail images to fill the screen. A minimalist design style is also common, because it allows the photos to be the center of attention rather than the design details of the site.

Eric Ryan Anderson

Eric Ryan Anderson

Symbol Photography

Symbol Photography

Nick Onken

Nick Onken

Stan Seaton Photography

Stan Seaton Photography

Piotr Kulcyzcki

Piotr Kulcyzcki

Tom Hoops

Tom Hoops

Steffen Knudsen Allen

Steffen Knudsen Allen

Jeremy Cowart

Jeremy Cowart

Christina O’Brien Photography

Christina O'Brien Photography

Clayton Bozard Photography

Clayton Bozard Photography

Nicolas Tarier Photography

Nicolas Tarier Photography

Martin Lawrence

Martin Lawrence

Northlandscapes

Northlandscapes

Photography by Koa Metter

Photography by Koa Metter

Daniel Weisser Photography

Daniel Weisser Photography

Marc Labrie

Marc Labrie

Kait Robinson

Kait Robinson

Morgan Norman

Morgan Norman

Caitlin Worthington

Caitlin Worthington

Hardy Klahold Photography

Hardy Klahold Photography

Janae Shields Photography

Janae Shields Photography

Dave Hill

Dave Hill

Mareen Fischinger

Mareen Fischinger

AspectPhotography

AspectPhotography

Ryan Edy

Ryan Edy

Cocoon Studio

Cocoon Studio

Eli

Eli

Shoot the Living

Shoot the Living

Ryan Michael Kelly

Ryan Michael Kelly

Tom Hull

Tom Hull

Omkaar Kotedia

Omkaar Kotedia

Shaw & Shaw Photography

Shaw & Shaw Photography

For more design inspiration, see:

If you’re looking to learn more about design websites, please see our post Learn Web Design.

July 15 2013

14:20

June 20 2013

14:33

How to Build an Eye-Catching Portfolio Layout

Advertise here with BSA


Both personal and corporate portfolios require careful attention to detail. There are lots of new user experience techniques which can offer a seamless interface for designers. And when presenting your work online it is worth spending a bit of extra time to ensure your strategy will impress visitors.

I want to share a few ideas for when you are crafting a new portfolio layout. These trends will obviously advance as time goes on. Digital creatives are often the first people jumping onto new trends, and so it is reasonable to assume portfolios may resonate newer design ideas in the future. But not every idea is going to be perfect for your website. It takes a bit of critical thinking to determine which design styles would fit best into your own personal or company portfolio layout.

Single Page Layouts

The popularity of single-page parallax scrolling websites has become enormous. JavaScript libraries are growing rapidly and this allows designers to scale out their own projects very quickly. The appeal towards single-page websites is that all your major information may be kept in one place. This means no further HTTP requests and your visitors have direct access to everything on a single page.

leo tartari ux designer website layout

There are plenty of drawbacks to using this method and it really only works if this design is your final goal. Some creative professionals and corporations need to use multiple pages and subpages for getting all their content online. However freelancers singular entities like Leo Tartari can put together a splendid performance within just a single page. The content is easy to read and organized in a beautiful presentation which really catches your eye.

tyler smith branding web developer portfolio website

Now another fascinating difference is in the amount of information you choose to portray on a single page. Leo’s design has many larger panels which each display a small amount of information. It is definitely a creative endeavor and works perfectly for the style. Yet we might also compare the portfolio of Tyler Smith, which is a lot neater and less detailed. His features consist only of his personal projects and a brief summary about himself. These two contrasting examples of single-page design offer a broader spectrum of what is possible for your own portfolio website.

Big Imagery

Typically you can find big oversized images in the website’s of media companies and design agencies. However various portfolio elements can benefit using large photographs and background images. The homepage design of Francisco Inchaust’s portfolio has a nice background image covering a large span of the header. The colors blend nicely with the rest of the layout and it provides a common branding theme within the other pages.

portfolio writing design for francisco inchaust

Other pages on the site are built around typography and standard practices. I like his design a lot and have been following the layout over a couple years. I think the biggest takeaway is how flexible your portfolio layout can be, even by using a mixture of various design elements. Good typography coupled with eye-catching imagery is a nice way to grab people’s attention.

Focus on Typography

When I mention typography it is worth noting this is a separate idea compared to a text-centric website layout. Every portfolio should be using some text and thus you will need to handle the typography in some way. But other portfolios may be constructed solely around text on the page.

josh austin portfolio dark website typography text layout

The portfolio of interaction designer Josh Austin is a great example of minimalism with a focus on typography. You can find great information on his work, his skills, and some other background knowledge. Portfolio designs like these should not take a whole lot of time. But contextual layouts can still make a big impact when the copy is written in just the right way.

Minimalist Content

Designing content along with minimalism is quite possibly the most heavily used portfolio layout scheme. I have witnessed dozens of various portfolio layouts which all focus around a minimalist design. The goal is to generally present the least amount of information that is needed for your visitors. Make the design clean, the navigation easy to find, and the page text easy to consume.

chris masterson website minimalism inspiration gallery

Looking at the portfolio for Chris Masterson you can tell a lot of detail has gone into the formatting. Each of the portfolio entries is designed to have it’s own page. Much of the layout is focused around imagery – which would be a good starting point for designers. The layout ideas are great because it leaves each aspect of the site to be very malleable. You can change around the different elements and it will all still look pretty great.

nerdy hippo website layout inspiration minimalism portfolio

To design a website around minimalism is also to cut back on unnecessary content. Generally you do not need an extra Twitter feed widget or other related distractions. The beauty of minimalism is within the lack of distractions. Visitors can focus on your work and your credentials which is what really matters. There are so many more examples of minimalism which I have not included in this post. Check around the Internet with a Google search and see if you can put together other fundamental design ideas.

Final Thoughts

The chance to build a portfolio is rare because designers are not often working on other people’s websites. So it is worth spending a bit of time to do research before jumping head-first into your own project. And it is crucial that your visitors and clients may view your past work, read about who you are, and possibly what skills you have to offer. Try combining a few of these techniques along with your own ideas and you can surely put together one outstanding portfolio layout.


Advertise here with BSA

May 30 2013

17:15

May 23 2013

17:33

May 15 2013

13:26

April 25 2013

20:10

New work: Virtulos

Something I worked on this year for São Paulo-based Virtulos.

Virtulos type customisation

There’s more info and images on the portfolio page.

Identity Designed

Brand identity inspiration on Identity Designed.

Related posts worth a look

April 16 2013

13:00

April 08 2013

17:40

March 13 2013

17:40

March 11 2013

08:00

February 08 2013

19:58

Kairos

Here’s a project from a few years back that I never added to the blog.

Kairos logo

It was for a new shoe store aimed at people who love good quality, affordable footwear. My idea was simple — to create an icon set that looked like it was made from shoelaces, where each icon could be used for various occasions and promotions throughout the year.

Kairos logo

There were others, such as one shaped like a tennis racket for Grand Slam offers, one like an Easter egg, another a bat (Halloween). That kind of thing.

Custom Kairos shoelaces could be given to customers as promotional gifts, made into sweets, used to create framed wall art, etc.

A handwritten typeface was customised to give a similar impression.

Kairos logo

I didn’t know if the design was implemented until today when I searched for the store website.

And so it goes, sometimes. You can do the work, but the client decides on its use.

Identity Designed

Brand identity inspiration on Identity Designed.

Related posts worth a look

Tags: Portfolio
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