You should conceive of your portfolio as a collection of projects. We are open to projects of varying aesthetic, formal and conceptual types. Whatever their form, projects should:
- Demonstrate an ability to think through a problem
- Articulate the designer’s approach and resolution in compelling ways
- Manifest solutions and offerings that show craft, rigor and delight.
Please include at least 10 projects in your portfolio. These 10 projects may vary in complexity and kind. Below is a partial list of some possible project kinds:
- Research project
- Designed object/artifact
- Business venture
- Conceptual work
- Published work
- Pro-bono initiatives
- Competition entries
Several of your projects should show process along with finished work; we want to see how you came to a resolution, including some of your decision points along the way. Do not be afraid to show broken models, failed attempts, iteration and learning.
Be sure to include any published work (on the web, in print, or in exhibition), awards or competition submissions, and any other materials that evidence your commitment and passion for the enterprise of problem solving, celebration and design.
For accomplished designers: We will review your portfolios for concept development, sketching, iteration, research, problem solving, analytical thinking, strategy, prototyping, presentation and story-telling.
For qualified candidates entering the world of design: Products of Design welcomes candidates who do not have a formal design degree or experience in professional design practice. While these candidates’ portfolios may not emphasize the specific competencies listed above for practicing designers, they must convey the applicant’s acute ability to think analytically and strategically, and to harness this thinking toward successful problem solving. Your portfolio projects may be less visual, but please include snapshots of your process, images of the project in its final form, screenshots or PDFs of written documentation, and any documentation or press coverage of results.
Communication design and graphic ability: In addition to strong strategic, research, and three-dimensional abilities, we are especially interested in candidates possessing strong two-dimensional skills and who can create visually convincing artifacts. These can include graphic design, typography, motion graphics, branding, advertising, packaging, writing, websites, apps, and other collateral elements.
Optional Video Profile
Applicants are asked to submit an optional, speak-into-the-webcam video profile, 2-3 minutes in length, answering the following questions:
- What is your assessment of the current state of the design industry?
- Where do you see yourself within it, both now and in the future?
- At what scale are you most interested in working? Personal? Interpersonal? Community? Political? Global?
(Don’t like guidelines? Then scrap these questions and tell us what you’re really about and why you want to pursue advanced work in the enterprise of design.)
Portfolio Submission Format:
Any of the following formats are acceptable:
- Link to an online portfolio (preferred)
- CD or DVD (please provide .jpgs, .mov, and other file formats compatible with Mac platforms; please do not include PowerPoint, Keynote, or .exe files)
- Bound books or physical printouts
Videos should be published online with a link (and password if required), or included on the Project Porfolio CD or DVD disc. Video profiles should be in Quicktime .mov format, and must not exceed 20MB in file size.
Note: All portfolio submissions become the property of the School of Visual Arts and will not be returned. For this reason, we strongly recommend that applicants NOT submit original artwork. The College is not responsible for any media that is received in damaged condition and cannot be viewed.