August 1st, 2010

Keeping your portfolio up to date, you’d think would be pretty straight forward. After all, isn’t it just uploading images of your recent projects to your website and writing a quick description of how it was put together?

Well, one thing which still bugs me is the fact that I didn’t do that. After doing freelance for a number of years I decided to work full-time for a company and subsequently my freelance work went down the drain. A number of things were the reason for this, obviously having a full time job was one of them but most notably I didn’t feel as though I needed to do it anymore.

I neglected my freelance company Eclipse – Design & Web Development which I set up when leaving college (high school for those of your across the pond) and just enjoyed doing the day job.

What a mistake that was!

Just a bit of advice to you all – keep your portfolio up-to-date. Your portfolio is a bit like your identity and the key to do anything you want, so you wouldn’t want to lose that now would you?

When I made the decision to move jobs the one problem I faced was not having a collective place where I could show employers what I had done.  So, when it came to providing a link to my website I resorted to sending links of sites I had designed – obviously not the best practice, but it worked. For the interviews themselves I ended up having to take my laptop which, to be fair, worked in my favour as it does make you look quite professional.

After all this I decided enough was enough and I proceeded with coming up with mockups for my new website. The funny thing is you think you will have time to do everything. Quite simply you don’t, especially if you’re and have a very active 1 year old daughter to play with and don’t get me started on the wife!

The Conclusion

The fact is, your online portfolio, blog or whatever you want to call it needs to be updated as soon as you finish a project. It doesn’t really matter if its a small job or something you did in your spare time. It all matters to someone at the end of the day. If you want to get ahead in this business the more experience you can show to the world the better, who knows what you may get out of it?

Ever since I put my site up I’ve had a steady influx of freelance work and job offers. This is all down to doing what I can in my spare time and its paid off in the long run. And I’ll tell you one thing – I won’t be neglecting it this time.

Feel free to leave a comment and let me know if you’ve ever been guilty of neglecting your online portfolio.

Comments

  1. 3/8/10 | 08:36
    Oli

    Hi Faren,

    I neglected my web-design portfolio for a great many years, thinking it was more important to get on with new sites than to catalogue the old one. The offers didn’t come in as quickly as when I had it up to date.

    There’s a balance to be found between telling people you’re doing stuff and actually doing stuff. Knowing that balance is something that might take a little while to get right.

    I’ve recently updated my online photo portfolio, and although I’ve only done one more shoot since I updated it, I haven’t yet uploaded the photos. Frustratingly silly, seeing as we’ve got things like Dropbox.com and Mozy.com to coordinate and synchronise files between various devices.

    Take a quick look at my photography portfolio if you’ve got a minute; I’d appreciate any comments you might have.

    from Oli

  2. 3/8/10 | 08:37
    Oli

    PS – that’s a lot of Simply Red you’ve been listening to!

  3. 3/8/10 | 10:37
    admin

    Hey Oli,

    Its been a while! Thanks for checking out the post. Its always great to hear other peoples opinions on topics like this.

    Your right about the balance side of things. It can be difficult but once you develop an understanding of how much work you can take on it helps. There have been a number of times I’ve had to say no to certain projects because they would just take up too much of my time.

    Just had a look at your portfolio – great selection of them, I especially like the club night and band shots. I notice it links to your Flickr page so will have to add you on there.

    As for the Simply Red overdose, you’ll have to blame Paul at Subtv for that one as he used to play them quite a lot!

    Speak to you soon.

  4. 27/8/10 | 09:26
    Alex Cican

    Good read! I neglected not only my portfolio but my entire website as well. My PageRank also dropped! It’s been three months since I decided to update the website and I still haven’t! Part of the reason was that I started another two websites one which I’m actively writing weekly plus I went on holidays! :D

    I’ve been having thoughts of quitting freelancing but I don’t know how well it will work out for me…

    P.S. Two lines above the “conclusion” typo: “if your me” should be “if you’re me” :)

  5. 27/8/10 | 09:47
    admin

    Hey Alex, thanks for the having a read. It can be difficult when there are so many things to do and such little time in which to do them. As for for you quitting freelancing, I recommend keeping your options open. I think your best bet is giving it a try and seeing how it goes – you’ve nothing to lose right?

    I’m currently in a permanent position and getting a regular income is always better unlike freelance which can have its dry patches. I’m actually thinking of going back to freelance/contract work as its something I’m been doing full time for a number of years now and I’m just so much more used to it, but then again, who knows what the future holds?

    BTW, thanks for spotting the typo!

  6. 26/11/10 | 16:22
    Ron

    Love your site man keep up the good work

  7. 25/1/11 | 09:07
    Krishna

    very nice website, enjoy the way you write

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