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Full Version: Help with portfolio
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Hi everyone, this is my first post here and I hope this is the right spot for it. 

I am currently putting together a portfolio of my work, which I intend to have printed as an actual booklet (so, once it’s printed, I won’t be able to edit it any more) Naturally, I am looking for second opinions before I send it off to the printers. Attached is a WIP file of the pdf with all of my images. 

Mostly what I am looking for is your guys’ thoughts on which pieces are the weakest and should be taken out (reasons as to why would be extremely helpful as well!). If you have a definite favorite piece, feel free to mention that, but at this point I am more focused on finding out which pieces are the weakest representations of my work, so that only my best work is shown. 

For context, I am currently not working professionally, but I wish to eventually work on a freelance basis as an illustrator in the entertainment industry. Working on board games, trading cards, book covers, and movies would be my ideal career choice. 

Thanks in advance for taking the time to help me out!
Heya, for me the weakest links are your figurative studies. Hiding, Alone, Luna. They showcase issues and shortfalls in your anatomical understanding, even though they are, i assume, essentially studies?
Also the Von Sydow and Psycho pieces, just general execution.

The friend portraits, authors, and the first two pieces are better. The film studies are ok, but they are just studies aren't they? The knight piece is interesting, but the structure and pose of the little knight has many issues.

In general, you can probably work more more on your form and structural drawing, and do more that isn't just study as you add more pieces. You could work with more defined lighting schemes and sharper more 'designed' shadow shapes which is showing up in the lovecraft piece. Edge control in particular also could do with some work on picking the right edges to fade and the ones to retain sharpess. go a bit bolder with both. Why are you printing at this stage, is it for a specific reason?
(09-08-2017, 07:32 AM)pid=\115458 Wrote:Thanks for the feedback! Follow-up question: do you think a piece like this that is a bit more “illustrative” would be a good replacement for one of those figure studies, or is this piece just not strong enough to include? 

Also- No I don’t have a particular reason for printing this portfolio as a book, other than just personal preference. As I start looking into doing more traveling in order to attend some different conventions and such, I just personally don’t want to have a digital portfolio that I’d have to show people on a tablet, nor am I really a fan of those black plastic portfolio binders. Having a portfolio printed out as a photo book seemed like a nice solution. 
Aight, all good. I personally prefer printed folios too, you can go custom format or big, and they don't run out of battery :). But getting things print worthy and too print well is another whole pain in the ass as well. i think having both is better to meet all situations rather than sticking to one.

Anyways, i think this not being purely study might be better, though it still shows off some fairly obvious issues with the figure. That head is really large at the top and there are issues with how his left leg connects with pelvis and with the difference in value /contrast of that leg compared to the rest of the figure.

Note a caveat with the not including studies thing, is that some people's studies are an artform alone and are unique, and in those rare cases probably fine to include, otherwise i tend to see them as the plastic trinket stocking filler, but no real present on xmas morning. You want to give people looking at your folio, real gifts.

My personal thought process with picking what remains or gets in my folio is:

1. Does it show any obvious major/fundamental shortfalls in knowledge/skill?
if it does, can i fix it now to bring it up to scratch? if i can, I do it and reevaluate.
if I can't, (eg tried and failed, or requires more study) then it's out.

2. Does the piece reflect the type of work I'd like to do in the future? If not, it's immediately out.

Obviously one doesn't start with a killer folio or the skills, so I tend to advise people to get in the habit of self evaluation and cycling work constantly through the folio, replacing old/substandard work with better stuff. You'll probably learn more about self evaluation that way too.
Also don't equate having lots of mediocre work just to show 'something' as being better than only having one or two amazing pieces. Better to be brutal and only show your absolute best even if that is only one piece to start with
hope that helps.
This has helped me out a lot. Hopefully I'll get better at self-evaluation as time goes on, but at this stage you have been a tremendous help. Thanks so much for your replies!
Yep your eye will get keener! Just keep evaluating dispassionately and getting crits :) Awesome glad it was useful. Good luck!
last piece of advice....that i didn't mention before. If yoy want to work in the 'entertainment industry' you might want to start doing work specifically for these card art, book covers, posters etc, rather than these randomish portraits, studies etc. Don't get me wrong I prefer people to do whatever they really want to do for themselves over stuff just to work as a peon in an industry, because i think that is way more fulfilling, but yeah if you want a job, tailor the folio to the job as you can.