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Portfolio Works and Preparation for Portfolio Connections

The Design of the Art


Your Portfolio

Making and saving work for an Art Portfolio is important to an artist for several reasons. One reason, being it is a record and account of work that an artist has done. Many work forms that we see in museums and in recorded history have been preserved in some way. It is important for an artist to learn how to archive. Archiving is also a good way to reference old material. Another reason is for attending school, for employment and to apply for contests or scholarships. This process of any application can be the most influenceable on employers, schools and other organizations. For example, many people apply for grants in photography and need a viable and exciting portfolio to express their work. A scholarship is another great example to keep a portfolio. If an artist ever wanted to reference and use material that he/she created to included, in a book is also another good example. Here are some examples of focuses that an artist can have while and during building a portfolio: “Architecture, Art Education, Art History, Ceramics, Film, Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture, Writing (usually programs focused on poetry, fiction writing, screenwriting)”(PrepScholar) Whether or not you focus on Drawing for example and focus more on photography, you still want to keep your best work and your best reference work (like a value scale) nice and preserved in a portfolio.


What type of portfolio are you building?

Have a focus.


“Variety and Versatility”, what does that mean? This work should show off your best skills, but also give the viewer a good idea of the range of skills that you have.

How long will this take? Everyone is different, some people have a time frame to work with, have due dates and deadlines, but others may take a year to create a good portfolio. Make sure you review any deadlines with the professional at your school, organization, or hiring managers. Then choose 10-20 pieces to include.

-”Show your Originality”; show what it is about art you like and what you are good at


Make sure the works that you have chosen are in good condition, if not is there anything you can do to fix them, if not, leave them out and try working on something similar

No torn edges, use spray fixative with drawings and charcoal, to reduce or eliminate smudging

On the back make sure you write in pencil your name and address, phone number, email-in case of misplacement

Photograph them well; things like sculptures will probably be photographed, now-a-days, most every portfolio is photographed, so you want to make sure the photograph has good lighting

(a. use warm light not cool light-on the back of the light bulb box when you buy it is where you can find the information of that light bulb pertaining to the warmness or coolness of the light-you don’t want the light to be too, warm, though, or photo will turn out yellowish),

b. make sure the photograph is clear and not blurry and is cropped, the camera should be a high quality camera, at least a pixel range of 600X600 or more, there should be no shadows cast on the work and work with one light source, the background can be a solid neutral color like black white and gray and should be mainly cropped out, unless otherwise specified by organization to leave the edges in, the photograph should not crop out any of the artwork itself, though.

c. A good test of color, is to ask, do the color look like the actual piece?

In-Person: do not include frames, make sure there is a case, or professional portfolio carrier used in transporting and showing, if clear covers are available, leave them inside.

Note: never just hand over your work, like originals. Make a master set of everything, and offer them copies if they want to keep them for a period of time. A flash drive, printed copies, duplicate copies of photographs, or slides. (You may have to pay for postage, but it’s worth keeping your originals in a safe place.)

Also note, there are many resources, on the internet to help you have a web version of everything you make, and design portfolios:

This also may be a good way to keep track of everything as you go.

(“Complete Expert Guide: How to Make an Art Portfolio for College”; Copyright PrepScholar 2013-2018; accessed October 8, 2019;

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