At Architect-US’ Career Training Program we try to give you advice so that you enhance your portfolio in the best way possible. We’ve seen hundreds of them and we know what most companies are looking for and are expecting from your work. So we try to give you the guides that we think are most helpful for you, and “easy” to follow so that it makes a true impact on the employer. However small these guides or changes may seem to you, they truly make a big difference in your portfolio, specially when you follow most of the recommendations. So here we leave you with 6 main guides that you should follow as a rule for your portfolio:
Make sure that your portfolio illustrates quality rather than quantity. Your portfolio does not need to be 50 pages long, you can have a very strong portfolio that is just a few pages long. So make sure that you are displaying the work that you think is your strongest.
Work on composition: don’t overload your portfolio with text and filler images! There is a fine balance of the content that you decide to include in your portfolio, and it can be tricky for you to decide, however we recommend that you don’t have a text heavy portfolio, and that you avoid filler images. Those images may draw attention away from your strong pieces.
Choose a presentation format that facilitates reading and printing: A4. We recommend that you stick to the classic A4 size. This is because it will make your life easier when it comes to printing and it will also reduce the costs. You are already spending a lot of money in other areas of your applications, so save a little extra when you can!
The cover is the first thing that the employer is going to look at before opening your portfolio. So make sure you have an elegant and sophisticated cover. I don’t mean boring, but don’t go to crazy either.
This point may seem clear to a lot of you or annoying to some. However, we highly recommend that you stick to neutral backgrounds in your portfolio, don’t move the attention of the reader away from the content that really matters by adding crazy colors all over the place. It will also help you be cohesive throughout the entirety of your portfolio pages. So if your graphic design in not on point, and you start adding colors and shapes all over the place it may distract the reader from the content that actually matter: your work!
6. File size
Last but not least, make sure the portfolio file isn’t too heavy, don’t send a massive file as they will probably not wait for it to open. Employers receive a lot of portfolio for them to look at and if the file is taking too long to open it is likely that they will move on to the next. So make sure you see how big the file is and what you can do to reduce the size.