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Article by Leonie Miller-Aichholz.
At some point during your career at AMFI you will need to build a portfolio. But where to start? Building a website with your work is extremely important when it comes to applying for internships. People can get a clear impression of your work as a fashion professional as well as you as a person. Finding a good balance to make your site professional yet personal may seem like a challenge at first, so here are 5 tips that can help you starting the process.
1. Keep it clean
When it comes to the visual appearance remember to keep it simple. Ultimately there is not one right visual direction, but for the sake of easy navigation and clear communication, keep the general graphic design of your page simple. Small surprising elements and effects can be a nice touch, but remember that your portfolio is mainly about showcasing your work. Watch out for distractions like animated effects to not take over your website. Finding a good balance is about trial and error but in this case less is definitely more. You rather want to have less, well chosen effects than an overload of random gifs or noises.
A great example of a minimal portfolio. (Source: pyhai.com)
2. Get some personality in there
This is the hardest but most important part of creating your portfolio – making it your own. Here, it’s all about fine-tuning and bringing your style and character across in a subtle way. Things like the font you choose, the way you photograph and display your products or the tone of voice in your about page have a significant impact on the general impression you bring across. Remember that everything you put on the website has an effect on the viewer so make conscious decisions about how you want to portray your work.
Melvin Ghandour’s portfolio immediately conveys his personal style. (Source: melvinghandour.com)
3. Make it fun
When creating your portfolio as a student applying for internships it is important to differentiate it from a corporate website. It can and should be really personal and give an impression of your character, and not seem too reserved and serious. Depending on which companies you choose to send your application to, you can research the style and tone of voice they find attractive and adjust it, but don’t forget to always make it approachable and insightful. Think of it like a personal introduction that needs no further explanation on your skills, style, previous experience and personality.
So colourful! (Source: caterinabianchini.com)
4. Navigation is key
Possible ways to navigate could be structuring the portfolio by skills, products or projects, but do keep in mind that an outsider doesn’t know about the structure of AMFI projects and might need extra explanation. No matter how you choose to structure your portfolio, mentioning the skills applied on a project is a must. That way you let the viewer know what you’re good at, what your role was during that specific project and what skills they could rely on when working with you. The most prominent thing is also the most clicked on, so keep a hierarchy and actively highlight work that you are proud of.
Clear and eye-catching navigation. (Source:melaniedaveid.com)
5. Offer something unexpected
You are still one fish in the sea of a million applicants and students, so one way to stand out is through your portfolio. It doesn’t matter if that is through a small introduction video you made, a journal page or a catchy name, anything works as long as it’s, again, personal! Take the time to come up with something memorable and original that not every portfolio can offer.
A good portfolio is work in progress, so don’t expect it to be perfect right away. The trick is to start and learn along the way. For me personally, I learned a lot about how I want my portfolio to be while creating it, so take your time and be flexible. Keeping these 5 tips in mind you should have a good head start on the way to making your website personal and outstanding.