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Traditional Portfolio vs Digital Portfolio

Discussion in 'Graphic Design Forum:' started by Michelle Duncan, May 27, 2014.

  1. Michelle Duncan

    Michelle Duncan New Member

    When going for job interviews, what are most people using these days and what do you think are the pros and cons of each one?

    I'm basically starting from scratch with my portfolio. Most of the work I've done is for print, but there's some web graphics that I could include. My last portfolio was a big A2 one when I left university.

    Does anyone use their iPad for their portfolio? What App would you recommend? I'm thinking that this would be easier to update and edit as needed. It could also be more suited to showing off my social media management and blog skills and perhaps and easier tool to talk with.
    SonyaKei likes this.
  2. scotty

    scotty Well-Known Member

    It's years since I had a traditional (hard copy) portfolio.

    When I left college I had a big A2 but when I started working in print this reduced to an A3 and then to an A4.
    I guess if a lot of your work is printed examples then I guess you'd need to show that but an iPad or a lappy is great for digital stuff.

    I think if it works for you then use it.
  3. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    Maybe a little out there but as you deal mainly in print and social media have you considered making a hardback cover book featuring your work... with perhaps single 'quotes' from seo featured on a plain white page as you go through? What says you work with print more than a 'book' :)
    Obviously this isn't as easy to update but in my opinion it would leave more of an impact (assuming the work is good) over a binder/ipad, especially if you let them have a copy :p

    One thing I will say - A2 is far too big unless you're an 'artist', I wouldn't go above a3.
  4. dedwardp

    dedwardp Member

    I've thought similarly for a while, that it would be good to have a book/brochure style portfolio where I could just leave a copy with them. Biggest problem I'm having is actually getting round to putting something together haha.
  5. Michelle Duncan

    Michelle Duncan New Member

    Yeah, I wouldn't get bigger than an A3 one. Like the idea of the book, not sure my works quite there yet but one to think about for the future.
  6. Jimlad

    Jimlad Well-Known Member

    There are plenty of decent websites for getting one-offs or short runs of books printed. I used to make a hardback portfolio book for an interview I had a few years ago and let them keep it. Cost be about £15 including delivery. I probably wouldn't bother again unless I was going to make more of the book theme or something, but its definitely affordable if thats the way you decide to go. Now I'd either go A4 portfolio case or maybe an iPad with an app synced up with my online portfolio. Physical portfolio cases don't run out of battery.
  7. Robert Stott

    Robert Stott Member

    Hah hah. Yep, very true.

    Personally I'd always take some kind of non-electronic backup just in case of some kind of catastrophic e-failure. I learnt that one the hard way.
  8. About four years ago I was part of a team that had to give a presentation in front of about 200 people. The USB stick that contained the entire presentation decided to die about an hour before we were due to go on... We actually managed to find a technician a short way away, our hope was that he might be able to repair the circuitry, but he couldn't fix it. Luckily we had an older version, in which we had about 20 minutes to get as much of it up to date as possible - we had to wing it the rest of the way.

    Most people just assume that this stuff never happens, or at least it won't happen to them. It does, and it will - always be prepared!!

    I think a physical book would go down very well, and A4 would be a good size too.
  9. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    This is why I always have 2 copies of any work on different drives (along with remote access to home pc's if desperate)... and I store them in different places, you never know if your bag will get nicked for example.
  10. Michelle Duncan

    Michelle Duncan New Member

    Oh yes, definitely back up. Thanks for all the suggestions, much food for thought.
  11. RobertDecousta

    RobertDecousta New Member

    I may say that Digital portfolio is very good than the traditional portfoloi.
  12. SophSoph

    SophSoph New Member

    I'm late to this conversation, but I had a graphic design student ask me this the other day and I wasn't sure how to answer.
    I'm of the generation of the physical portfolio. Do any of you guys still entertain interviews or meetings that involve the physical portfolio with younger designers?
  13. GilmoreVisuals

    GilmoreVisuals Active Member

    So far every interview related to design has needed a physical portfolio. However, that can just be a backup... I wouldn't have any problem someone showing me a presentation or pdf file of their work on a laptop / tablet etc.
  14. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    Even though Alex says about needing a physical portfolio... just about every design 'job' being advertised these days seems to require a digital portfolio, either a pdf or a website to be 'attached to any application'.

    In some cases you won't even get to the interview stages without a decent digital portfolio.
    Karen Cowell likes this.
  15. GilmoreVisuals

    GilmoreVisuals Active Member

    Sure, before the interview you'd have to have a digital one to send, of course. That's essential to get any level of interview. For this i'd say website is the best option although I couldn't upload more than half of my work (as it wasn't technically mine to show even though I designed it.. it was for my previous design agency I worked for).
  16. debbiec12323

    debbiec12323 New Member

    The first option I'd go for is digital portfolio, however, as it has been pointed out clearly and accurately, having a traditional physical portfolio is a must in the case of an issue with the digital portfolio or with the devices/networks used to access it, which is very likely to happen to all of us.
  17. Jimlad

    Jimlad Well-Known Member

    I recently had an interview where I got the call literally the day before. My printer was acting up and there was no way I'd pull together a decently presented physical portfolio in time. Enter: The iPad. I uploaded a handful of relevant images to galleries on my squarespace website and synced them to the portfolio app on my iPad and my iPhone as a backup. Went down a treat with the interviewer and totally saved my bacon. I'll be using an iPad as a portfolio from now on, unless I somehow find myself at a table showing work to attendees of a con or something.
  18. josephtovar

    josephtovar New Member

    Well, as for me digital portfolio is better. I am using it and I think that its more convenient, because its always with you and it looks more modern for the employer.
  19. EdgeThreeSixty

    EdgeThreeSixty New Member

    For my last interviews I had my portfolio professionally printed and presented in an A3 portfolio case. It went down a treat with all the businesses I met with. I had digital design work eg. web sites and apps on my tablet but the touchy feel factor of my printed portfolio won out for me. Printed portfolios show a level of pride in your work that in my opinion cannot be achieved on screen. Don't forget many interviewers in this industry spend a lot of time staring at screens. Anything that breaks the norm will make your work stand out.

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