Portfolio Advice



  • @xin-li thanks so much for all the advice. I'll definitely try that podcast asap



  • Hi Carrie-Anne!!

    Love the illustrations you've selected! Your work looks cohesive and gives off a great visual representation of your style. I did notice however when you select an image to look/read further into your text is almost overlapping or touching your artwork. Not sure if it's the template you selected but see if you could move the text over to the right side a bit or move it above or below the images. Great work!

    I am also on the same boat of graphic design and illustration on one website. Please check out my portfolio if you have a chance I'd love your feedback as well.



  • @Sasha-Contreras oh no! Something weird must have happened when I changed the header. Thanks for letting me know. Websites are a nightmare.



  • @Sasha-Contreras I just had a quick look, I'd maybe swap the two sections on the homepage so that the woman with the water hair comes up first because it's so striking and beautiful. The duck image close up is a little blurry on my phone



  • @carrieannebrown I think you have a lovely portfolio. Like Sasha said, the text is bumping up against the images.

    The only thing I would suggest is to reconsider the type on the Bongo spread. This didn't strike me so much before - i loved your contest entry. But seeing it in your portfolio now makes me pause. You have it nicely typeset, but the type design speaks of an entirely different format than a children's picture book. Type in picture books is sometimes partly for kids to read along as best they can, and so usually is much bigger, needs to be as easily recognizable as possible. This can be to help the kid connect it to reading on their own, and any other decision needs to be carefully considered. Cursive excludes kids completely until a certain age. Even without the youngest readers to consider, the high contrast thin white all cap font is something I would really dislike reading out loud with. This is a little detail I wouldn't point out if not for the header which says it's an illustration AND graphic design portfolio, so you're suggesting the viewer consider you as both even within one section.

    To me, as a frequent end user of children's books in reading out loud to kids, it looks like you have not studied picture books in terms of picture book type design or placed the illustration in a design project fully (as in, you haven't fleshed it out to see which moment of the story it is and which bit of text it would be read with, but that is one of the most important things about spreads); and in that case it might be best to not pressure yourself to include all the text (I doubt anyone would take the time to read it when it's more than one line anyway), or just see if you like it on its own without the text, or with space for text. With any graphic design work you need to know your market to determine whether it's a good solution.



  • @carolinebautista I think you're right. I'll give it some thought and amend it. Thank you. I was already thinking I should take out the double page spread because important parts are disappearing into the page fold which looks like I'm a little clueless. I know I have a lot more work to do before anyone is likely to hire me to illustrate a children's book



  • @carrieannebrown goodness, it doesn't seem right to take it out! And it's a little thing, nothing that would mean work is unlikely for you. The gutter seems pretty well accounted for to me. Yours was one of my favorites for that contest. Maybe just try a sentence from the text in the top left corner instead? What about "Bongo was so hungry he couldn't resist teasing the alligator again, so he climbed the tree closest to Clyde. He crawled out on a branch overhanging the river and dangled his tail."

    That way the foreground on the bottom right will show better too.

    edited to fix a mistake, gah



  • @carolinebautista Hi, I reduced the text as you suggested. Could I ask for your thoughts? I'm not sure whether I need some kind of fade off behind the text....
    Bongo-lesstext.jpg



  • @carrieannebrown Wow, this looks so good! Super legible now, and the color you chose is perfect! It doesn't seem to need a fade off but I will look at it again later to see if anything changes. My design skills are seriously rusty so take this with a grain of salt, but the straightest lines are the rays of light highlighting Bongo, so might be nice to keep the text where it is and right-justify it to go right along with the rays. It might help keep the eye in the page near the focal point rather than the frame of the image.

    Actually, now that i've studied this image a bit, one of my favorite things is that Bongo is sticking his tongue out at Clyde. But his face is almost the same blue as the river, so if you want that to read as quickly as Clyde's expression, then maybe putting more contrast in that would help it stand out. The main contrast in Bongo's face right now, is the top of his head and the whites of his eyes.

    Really lovely portfolio! 🙂



  • @carrieannebrown No problem!! Thank you for taking the time to look at my website as well! I will definitely update that image to show something more recent. Looking forward to seeing more of your work on this platform and on instagram! 🙂 😁


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