What Every Digital Portfolio Needs

If you hope to land a career as a cinematographer, journalist, photographer or media-based career, you’ll need more than a résumé and cover letter. It’s a common expectation that those within these fields have an online portfolio. Thankfully, there are plenty of online website builders available at affordable prices, so you won’t have to dabble in HTML or CSS.

Of course, having access to an easy to use website builder won’t get you a complete portfolio that’s career ready. You’ll need to ensure you follow a few basic guidelines, and it so happens, we broke it down for you. Check out the recommendations below.

Choose Your Domain

We’re not talking about what small island you’ll someday rule over. This is your website name that comes after those three W’s. As you give consideration to the domain name, you’ll need to ensure it’s available. Search www.domain.com to see if it’s available and if not, to see who owns it. While an edgy website domain would be fine, we recommend using your name followed by the word ‘portfolio’.

Choose Your Works

Select no more than 10 to 15 samples of your work to feature in your portfolio. When it comes to selecting your samples, variety is important, but be sure to keep the examples relevant to the job you’re seeking. If you’re wanting to be a photographer for studio models, your portfolio should focus on 10 images that showcase different studio lighting, outdoor takes, and aesthetics.

Your Personal Statement

The personal statement should be housed on its own page and include a professional photograph of yourself and a brief, yet informative, description of who you are and what you have to offer. As with your entire portfolio, keep your audience in mind when you choose your tone. The language you’d use in pursuing a career working with hip-hop album producers would be different than someone who wants to get hired at a financial firm.

Social Media

Incorporating social media handles on your portfolio can be an amazing way to offer behind-the-scenes looks at your processes and one off’s. However, avoid incorporating elements that are outside of your work brand. This means keeping politics out, unless of course, you’re seeking a career as a campaign photographer for a specific party. Once again, all of this comes down to making all your decisions based on your brand and audience.

Contact Info

Your contact information should be easy to access and link to a location where you’ll get any inquiries right away. Include your full name and email address at a minimum (make sure your email address is professional and clear, i.e. on brand for you).  If you’re applying to jobs or seeking clients, start checking your email daily; the job begins as soon as the employer hits send! You don’t want to miss an offer.

By Thomas Guzowski, U of R Employee
Thomas Guzowski, U of R Employee Assistant Director of Marketing Thomas Guzowski, U of R Employee