Portfolio show’s are one of the most important days for a student attending design school. It’s their final step before graduating and one of their first opportunities to network and meet potential employers. We love being a part of this special day by creating custom portfolios that represent our customer’s sense of style and individuality.
We’re intrigued by each student’s unique and creative portfolio design and how they decorate their tables to match their personality and branding.
For anyone whose big day is approaching, we’ve gathered four inspiring portfolio tables that our customers laid out at their shows. These tables are all one of a kind and definite show stoppers!
Megan’s frosted clear acrylic portfolio book with an engraved color fill is displayed beautifully on a table decorated with elements reminiscent of a relaxing beach day. She brought the beach to her table through elements like shells, sea glass and a small log.
We love how she livened up the table with flowers and succulents. The flowers even matched her warm pastel color scheme! To stand out from her classmates, she included both a blue and woven beige table cloth that tied into her beach theme.
Megan displayed her business cards on a small wooden branch with slits for the cards. We love to see students with unique ways of showing off their business cards based on their chosen theme. Megan’s table shows how tactile and tangible elements can draw attention to your area at the show and attract potential employers right away.
Shay’s table features our matte black acrylic portfolio book with an engraved color fill of metallic silver. Her delicate bow illustration on her portfolio perfectly reflects the exquisite table design she decided to go with.
Shay’s elegant and minimalist branding is easily captured through her portfolio show table layout. We love the way one of her fashion illustrations were displayed between to sets of roses.
A great way to show off your work, apart from in your portfolio book, is to have your favorite piece displayed separately so it will be seen right away. This will catch a potential employer’s attention and lead them to ask more questions about the art.
Another takeaway from Shay’s portfolio table is the addition of food to your table! Who doesn’t love a tasty treat? People will automatically be drawn to your table if you’re offering a free snack and they”re more likely to stick around to chat while they eat.
Bailey’s custom amber bamboo portfolio book with an engraved color fill reflects her eco-friendly aesthetic that reveals itself in her work and design philosophy.
Her table is another example of how plants such as succulents add color and liveliness. Bailey displayed her portfolio book and business cards on foam made to resemble brick. Her custom portfolio stood out from the rest of the table since it was heightened like a pedestal for her work.
She used bamboo crates matching her portfolio book to hold succulents, adding varying heights to her table. What stood out the most to us about Bailey’s table was her little goody bags. It’s a clever idea to have a small take-away that features your branding and logo so people will remember you once they’ve left the show. Plus, people are always stoked on receiving free goodies!
Gurleen’s custom brushed silver aluminum portfolio book with a burnishing treatment is displayed beautifully on her show table featuring a black table cloth.
The use of the table cloth allows her to stand out from the rest of the white table cloths. We recommend switching it up and adding your own table cloth to your portfolio show table to emphasize your color scheme further.
Gurleen also used succulents as a tactile element on her table. A splash of green s an awesome contrast against the black table cloth. It’s important to add contrast to your table to draw employer’s attention and catch their eye so they’ll visit your table.
Gurleen highlighted her silver theme through silver doilies under her succulents and a silver plate holding her giveaways. We love the way she wrapped lights around the top of the table, adding vibrancy against a darker theme. She also lit up her table with a couple candles to create a warm and inviting display.
Based on these 4 examples we have summed it up into 5 hot tips for your upcoming portfolio show table design.
1. Be unique by adding a table cloth that matches your brand color scheme.
2. Feature your favorite project or artwork separately from your portfolio to strike up conversation right away.
3. Prepare some goody bags for people to take home that feature your logo and branding.
4. Add varying heights to your table to draw people’s attention from far away.
5. Display your business cards on or in a tactile item that reflects your branding theme.
We look forward to seeing all the beautiful tables out there this portfolio show season!
Hello all! Name’s Tom, and I’m the resident portfolio artisan here at Klo Portfolios. If you place an order with us, chances are your final product will pass through my hands and soon be assembled to choice perfection! Having had the special privilege of personally overseeing countless hundreds of precious, unique portfolios from start to finish, I thought I’d take some time to impart to you all some of the insight I’ve gained.
We strive for nothing short of excellence – supreme-quality custom portfolios are our highest concern. That said, the final design and choices of materials, treatments, etc ultimately boil down you.
This means that sometimes, some designs turn out softer, or subtler, than the rest of the competition. And likewise, there are always a few custom portfolios that burst forward ahead of the pack. Still reading, and keen to make your portfolio one of those leading the forefront? Good, then read on and direct your eyes to the tips I’ve listed below.
One of the biggest shortcomings to a great design that we see are a diminished presence of colors on a portfolio surface. It may seem tempting to go for soft values and rock that au natural look, but trust me when I say that a strong portfolio is one that packs a visual punch.
Contrasting or strong colors are vital here. Strong choices are gold, white, red, color fills on black – whereas a soft and diminished choice would be striving for a dark grey on black, or perhaps a light brown on a darker brown bamboo surface.
Remember, the eyes sifting over your cover have likely already passed over many others in a rather short duration of time, so do your best to aim for something that pops!
Much like color, the sizing of your name and/or image is a an equally important detail to consider when it comes to your portfolio’s first impression. You never know how far across a room a potential client or future employer may be when their eyes pass over your custom piece, so don’t be afraid to take advantage of the full dimensions your chosen surface naturally provides!
Full-cover patterns or large images often stand out best in a crowd, as they maintain clear readability across a large breadth of distance.
Many portfolios shy away from images, opting instead to simply provide the owner’s name. There is of course a very good reason for this – choosing the perfect picture to convey a portfolio’s contents can be a quite the domineering and exhausting task, especially if there is a chance of the inner content being changed over the years!
And yet, if you are willing to invest the time to find that right image, I can tell you right now that your portfolio is going to convey a meaning many times deeper and more provocative to your general audience.
This last tip pertains to the general quality one can expect to achieve when they really take the time to sift over the details in their portfolio cover design. At the end of the day, your custom portfolio book is going to be with you for many, many years, and as such it definitely deserves your full consideration before placing an order.
We’ve seen many portfolio orders come through here that and nice, clean, and simple but that also lack that clear punch because they were designed towards the tail end of a deadline.
Oftentimes a good design means going back to the drawing board a couple of times, so offer yourself the time for revisions instead of rushing to the finish line, and it’ll shine through the rest of the competition without fail.
There you have it! With these guidelines now in your quiver alongside your creative vision, you’re already well on your way to a genius masterpiece of a custom portfolio. If you have any other questions, don’t hesitate to throw us an inquiry! We’re always happy to help you see your piece to perfection it deserves.
You’ve been working on your portfolio for months (or at least it seems that way) and you’re almost at the finish line except you need that perfect presentation book to house all of your blood, sweat, and tears. A professionally made portfolio book is a direct reflection of your work and will set the tone for the rest of the interview and allow you to stand out from the rest.
It can feel overwhelming to finalize the last piece of the puzzle so we’ve outlined some helpful tips we’ve passed on to our customers creating their own perfect custom portfolio book. Here are some things to consider before deciding on the best presentation vessel for you.
Are you a LEED accredited Interior Designer or Architect and want communicate this right off the bat? Customizing your portfolio book with one of our bamboo materials and an engraving will be perfectly in line with your message and ideology since it’s LEED certified.
Maybe you’re a young and eclectic fashion designer with a sophisticated yet fierce ready to wear collection. Choosing a matte black acrylic with an engraving and cut-out treatment will perfectly compliment your work.
Over the years we’ve created a comprehensive library that contains hundreds of examples of our work and collaborations with designers and we hope it will serve as an inspiration to you when deciding on how to customize your own portfolio book.
Deciding how mobile and agile you want to be when seeing clients and potential employers are things to think about when deciding on the size of your portfolio book. Do you plan on shipping your portfolio book or traveling often to see potential clients or will your trips be local and comfortable? Other things to consider are how detailed your prints are and if having a larger book will facilitate showcasing more intricate work.
An 11 x 14 portfolio or 11 x 17 is large enough to showcase your beautiful prints but not so big that it feels awkward on a potential employer’s or customer’s desk. It will be lighter and more comfortable to carry then a larger size which could become cumbersome if you need to ship it or travel a lot.
So you’ve browsed through our library of custom portfolio books, decided on the size and material and now it’s time for the fun part, choosing a treatment or treatments to apply to your branding and logo. We’ve outlined some details about the different treatments that can be applied to your custom portfolio.
Engraving and Engraved Color Fills
Our engraving treatment permanently etches acrylic, brushed aluminum, or bamboo materials for a classic and timeless look.
This option can be further customized with engraved color fills which is a process completed by hand where a specific color is added to the engraved area and is bound to make an impression.
If you have a colorful first page or want to incorporate a pattern in to your cover, you can combine an engraving with our cut-out design and have the first page pop through the cover for a more dramatic effect. The cut-out treatment lends a dramatic and edgy feel and will add an element of surprise to your portfolio book.
Vinyl Decals and Metallic Foils
Vinyl decals are best suited if your branding includes color and you prefer a seamless treatment on your portfolio book or in combination with a cut-out or engraving.
Metallic foils provide an easy way to add instant shine and come in silver, gold, blue, green, and red. You can choose to incorporate a metallic foil to a single design element or to your entire logo.
Burnishing Treatment for Brushed Aluminum
The burnishing treatment is exclusively for our brushed aluminum materials and lightly etches the surface to reveal a beautiful silver engraving. This treatment works best for more intricate designs on the brushed aluminum material. One thing to keep in mind is that the brushed gold and bronze material will result in a silver etching rather than a gold or bronze color.
The combinations and permutations of treatments for your portfolio book are endless so have fun with it! If you are unsure or need a second opinion, shoot us an email or give us a quick call and we’ll guide you through the process. Rest assure that no matter what combination of treatments you choose, you are in great hands and we’ll make it look professional and dreamy.
How will you be inserting pages in to your custom portfolio? Do you prefer having plastic over your pages or do you want to create a more tactile experience for the viewer? This will determine whether you use hinge strips, printed pages, or sheet protectors. Learn more about the 3 most popular options of properly inserting your pages in to your portfolio book.
Quality over Quantity of Prints in your Portfolio Book
20 well executed pieces of your work trumps 50 so-so pages so share only your best even it it means you won’t have as much as you’d like to show. Your first page will set the tone so you’ll want to make sure it’s a strong piece. It’s always best to spread your best work through out your portfolio book rather than front-loading it. You’ll want to finish on a high note as well so include a piece you’re really proud of in the end.
Cater Your Work for Your Audience
The magical thing about a screwpost portfolio book is that you can easily add and remove pages so make use of this wonderful feature and cater your work towards the potential client or employer you’re going to see.
For example, If you’re applying for a job at a digital agency, do some research and see what industry they serve and align your work as closely as you can to the type of work you’ll potentially get hired for. This level of customization shows that you mean business and you’ve done your research.
Ask for Advice
If you’re a design student, pick your instructor’s brain and fine tune your portfolio as best you can. Ask for constructive criticism from others outside of the design world, maybe Bob your Uncle? They may offer up a new perspective or reveal something about the fluidity of your work by the way they browse through it. Ask trusted friends and colleagues what they think can be done better and take their feedback in to consideration.
Remember, You’ve Got This!
You’ve made it through the door and you’re one step closer to landing an awesome client or dream design job so take a moment and give yourself a self-high five. You’ve got an awesome custom portfolio, a well thought-out body of work, and you’re ready to rock!
Still have questions? Feel free to get in touch with us and we’ll guide you through the process.
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