Fact 1: Creating a portfolio isn’t the daunting and scary task it’s put up to be.
Fact 2: Creating a portfolio can be fairly easy if you’re organized from the start.
Fact 3: Since we know you’re not organized, we created this post for you.
Some Background Or Why Do You Need a Portfolio
Portfolios sell. Your personality might need a little work, you may have no experience whatsoever, and you may have just switched from forensic photography to weddings and good living. A strong, professional photography portfolio can make up for all that. This is your first point of contact with future clients, your one and only chance to show them what you’ve got and what you can do for them. Don’t let them down.
Rule of Thumb: Less is More
- Bear in mind your online portfolio should be accessible and easy to navigate.
Leave all the special transitions and behaviors for another occasion.
- Show only your best work. There’s no room for mediocre photos on a portfolio. We know you love your experimental avant-garde-black and white set from college but they don’t belong here.
Before Setting to Work
There are two things you need to know before compiling your portfolio:
- Portfolio’s goal. What are you trying to achieve? Which aspect of your work will you be focusing on? Is this portfolio meant to present your skills as a landscape photographer? Wine and food photographer? Portrait photographer? An interdisciplinary theme here and there is fine, but don’t take it too far. Being a dedicated photographer with a particular expertise is a big draw for clients.
- Portfolio’s audience. Think specifics. If your portfolio is for ‘everybody’ it’s for nobody. Whose interest are you trying to gain? Potential clients? Employers? Your uncle’s rotary club? You can’t target all three (unless you create three different portfolios).
Not Only Photos
- Photos are only part of the total content of a portfolio. It might be the main part but it needs some supporting evidence to highlight your talent and skills. Expressing yourself with tidbits of texts discussing your work, motivations and techniques can make for a very compelling portfolio.Here is a short list of what you can include in a portfolio:
– An artist statement
– A title list of the photographs included in the portfolio
– A cover image representative of the portfolio as a whole
– Thumbnails of each photograph
Warning: Be careful with the amount of information cram into each page. Remember our rule of thumb: ‘less is more”. Only once you made the cut as a potential candidate can you afford to show extra work, talk about yourself or go off-topic.
- Usability. Your photos may be amazing but if your site isn’t user friendly, easy to navigate and has a credible look and feel, people won’t stay long enough to appreciate your photos. Many folks are amazing photographers but make pretty mediocre web designers and that’s fine, we can’t be everything and do everything all the time. The important point is to be aware of your limitations and find the help or advise you need to get you through your project.
- If for some reason you still feel the need to put large amount of information on a page see this post about grid and columns designs. It will give you some great ideas on how you can use the grid to your advantage when presenting a vast amount of information.
- Wix has a Designers Directory where you can find expert Wix designers who can help you complete your portfolio or create it for you if necessary. These designers were reviewed and approved by Wix, cater to different price ranges, and understand your special needs (often sharing similar professional experiences themselves).The Wix Help Center is full of instructional videos, ‘how-to’s’ and tips to take you through your design from start to finish.
Creating a portfolio is relatively easy once the setbacks that have been keeping you back for so long have been pushed out of the way.
Wix is an incredibly flexible platform that lets you do, redo, add or remove components from your site however and whenever you please. A portfolio is a living organism so you can always get back to it and run as many changes as you need with zero costs involved.
Creating a portfolio is a landmark event – one that will stay as a record of what you accomplished up to this point or more importantly – where you would like to be in the future. Whether you want to be a wedding photographer or the next Robert Mapplethorpe, designing your portfolio is the first step in becoming a dedicated and committed photographer.