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Successful Portfolio Tips

portfolioHe Almost Got The Job...Almost
Bradley arrives at a company for a graphic design job interview. He looks forward to the event. He has a good resume and is eager to learn. The session goes well. The hiring manager likes him and sees potential.

Everything seems to be going his way until she asks to see a portfolio of his work. He opens it up and displays a random, unorganized sampling of his designs.

While there are a few good examples, some of his prints are smudged or creased. The case also looks tattered and worn.

The hiring manager quickly flips through a few prints but doesn't look through all of the pieces. "Thanks for coming in," she says. But Brad already knows he won't be called back. "How could I have improved my portfolio?" he thinks to himself.

equationIt's Not Rocket Science
So just what is a portfolio and what is it supposed to do? In a nutshell, a portfolio is a professional collection of documents, photographs, or graphic illustrations demonstrating your skills, talent, and training in the area of your expertise. The content is placed in a large display carrying case called a portfolio.

The way you display your examples is almost as important as the content itself. Your examples should not be marred or creased, the portfolio case should appear new looking, and your content should match what your perspective client wants.

If you are presenting your portfolio on a website, many of the same principles regarding content selection and display for a traditional portfolio are also true for online purposes.

portfolio-armWhat You Put In Is What You Get Out
Simply assembling a mass of photographs, graphic designs, fashion designs, or other articles of your work doesn't mean it will automatically be a successful portfolio. Making a successful portfolio takes several key factors:

* Excellent content that showcases your best work

* Content that is focused on the needs of the client

* Content that is well edited. (You don't have to show everything)

* Organized content that unfolds logically

* Content that is current and up to date

Also seek out trusted friends or professionals in your field for advice and an honest critique of your work. This information can be very valuable in getting your portfolio to look just right.


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Graphic & Web Design (BFA)
  • Online and Bachelor's programs include B.S. in Advertising, B.S. in Web Design, B.A. in Interior Design, and more
  • Curriculum focus on preparing students for a creative career by teaching them the fundamentals of advertising and design
  • Students can choose from courses that cover areas such as advertising concepts, art direction, experience design, and online marketing
  • Over 50 locations nationwide, with a student support team dedicated to helping students grow
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Graphic Design, Bachelor of Science (Online)
  • Campus-based and online degrees include Computer Animation (BS), Digital Arts and Design (BS), Graphic Design (BS), and more
  • Students take ongoing portfolio courses that allow them to build and refine their design portfolio
  • Courses teach skills such as advertising, branding, visual messaging, and concept design
  • Curriculum combines elements of creativity, art, business and life skills, technical prowess, and academic achievement
  • Online Courses
Graphic Design and Animation
Good for Working Adults
  • Offers career-focused programs in allied health, business, and computer technology, and more.
  • On-the-job training available through externships, internships, and clinical placements.
  • Graduates in good standing can take refresher sessions in courses at no additional cost.
  • Day and evening class options are available for flexible scheduling.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS).
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  • Flexible Scheduling
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Graphic Arts (AAS)
  • Offers several scholarship opportunities for students who qualify.
  • Laptop computers are issued to each student at the beginning of their program.
  • Provides programs in health care, business, information technology, and graphic arts.
  • Respiratory Therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).

Our family of non-profit colleges admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.

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  • Accredited
  • Accelerated Programs
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Associate of Applied Science in Computer Graphic Design
Boost your career with training from Sullivan College of Technology and Design. We offer diploma and degree programs for careers in the technology and design field.
  • Accredited
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits