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Getting the Right Portfolio Advice

How many times have you sat down to build or update your portfolio, and became filled with dread, anxiety, confusion. You want instant relief in the form of advice, guidance, and direction. But how do you know it’s actually GOOD advice?

Sure, we can easily spot bad advice from clients or stakeholders as it relates to our creative work. But we are skilled enough as creative professionals to ignore this, and know that we need to somehow persuade them to see the light.

“Just use the logo from our website for the banner.”

“You don’t need to buy that image––just alter it.”

“We should have more buttons on the homepage.”

No thank you. I won’t be doing annnnny of that. 😆

However when it comes to the eternal struggle related to your self-promotional materials, it’s much more difficult to spot bad advice. This is especially tricky when it comes to your portfolio.

That said, if you’re receiving portfolio advice from someone who doesn’t know ALL of the following things:

-your future goals

-your full career story

-what you love

-the audience you’re trying to reach

-your creative approach

-who you are as a person


Now I’m not saying you need to block them, or tell them their advice is worth about as much as those old Adobe CS4 CDs collecting dust under your bed. But just understand that they are never going to be the best judge of your promotional efforts because they aren’t working from the set of criteria that defines you as a creative.

They are working from their own personal stories and experiences. And even worse, they could be dispensing generalized advice. And since creative is not a one-size-fits-all profession, fitting into a generic mold to try and land a creative job is the fastest way to get immediate rejections. Because what you’re showing and discussing is not authentic to who you are, and skilled hiring managers can immediately see that.

Now I’m not saying you need to come to me for advice, but you definitely need to go to someone who is invested in your success more than they’re invested in simply dispensing advice because they have an impressive title, and a few awards, and this is what they told everyone else.

Because you’re not like everyone else.

You’re unique and amazing, and you should have a portfolio that actually tells your story correctly, and showcases the creative spark that the world has been waiting for. 💥🎨

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