10 Tips for a Unique Creative Portfolio
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 10 min read


  1. Choose the right platform for your portfolio
  2. Showcase your best work first
  3. Tell a story with your work
  4. Make it easy to contact you
  5. Include testimonials and references
  6. Show your process
  7. Keep it updated
  8. Make it responsive
  9. Show your personality
  10. Proofread everything

If you're a creative soul looking to make a splash in the world, a portfolio is your calling card. It's a curated collection of your best work, a visual representation of your skills, and an opportunity to showcase your unique style and talents. But how do you go about building a creative portfolio that accurately represents you? Here are ten tips to guide you on your journey.

Choose the right platform for your portfolio

First step in building a creative portfolio is picking the right platform. And no, not all platforms are created equal. You need to choose one that aligns with your work and your creative style. Some platforms are great for photographers, others for graphic designers, and some are a good fit for a mix of everything.

For instance, if you're a visual artist, you might opt for platforms like Adobe Portfolio or Behance, known for their emphasis on visual aesthetics. If you're a writer or a content creator, Contently or Medium could be your best bet. For a more general portfolio, consider platforms like Wix or Squarespace.

But remember, the right platform for you is the one where you can best showcase your unique style and talents. So, take the time to explore different platforms, see how others in your field are using them, and choose the one that best fits your needs. This is the foundation of building a creative portfolio that truly represents you.

Next, make sure your portfolio stands out by showcasing your best work first. But we'll get to that in the next section.

Showcase your best work first

When building a creative portfolio, it's crucial to make a strong first impression. Think of it this way: your portfolio is like a book, and your best work is like the opening line—it should grab your audience’s attention and make them want to see more. So, choose your best pieces and put them front and center.

Remember, 'best' doesn't always mean 'most complicated.' Sometimes, your best work is a simple project that shows your unique style and talents. Maybe it's a logo you designed that perfectly captures a brand's identity, or a photo you took that tells a powerful story. Use pieces that you're proud of and that showcase your skills and creativity.

But, how many pieces should you include? Well, a good rule to follow is "less is more." You want to provide a broad view of your capabilities without overwhelming the viewer, so aim for a selection of 10 to 15 pieces. This allows you to show the breadth and depth of your work without diluting your portfolio.

And remember, quality over quantity. Your portfolio is not a dumping ground for every project you've ever done. It's a curated collection that showcases your unique style and talents.

Once you've selected your best work, it's time to weave them together into a compelling narrative. But we'll cover that in the next section.

Tell a story with your work

When it comes to building a creative portfolio, showcasing your unique style and talents isn’t just about exhibiting your best pieces. Here’s a secret: your portfolio should tell a story. Yes, you read that right! Just like a gripping novel draws readers in, your portfolio should engage, intrigue, and connect with your audience on a deeper level. But how do you do that?

Start by organizing your work in a way that makes sense. Perhaps it's chronological, showing your growth and progress over time. Or maybe it's thematic, grouping similar projects together. You could even arrange your pieces around the skills they highlight, such as design, photography, or illustration. The key is to create a flow that guides your audience from one piece to the next.

Once you've decided on an organization strategy, it's time to add some context. Each piece in your portfolio should have a brief description that explains the project and your role in it. But don't just state the facts — use this opportunity to share the story behind the work. What inspired you? What challenges did you face? What did you learn? This not only helps your audience understand your work, but also gives them insight into your creative process and problem-solving skills.

Remember: your portfolio is more than a collection of work — it's a reflection of you as a creative professional. So, let your work tell a story, your story.

Make it easy to contact you

Building a creative portfolio is one thing, but making it easy for potential clients or employers to reach out to you is another crucial aspect. Your portfolio isn't just a platform for showcasing your unique style and talents; it's also a bridge that connects you to the rest of the world. So, how do you ensure that this bridge is easy to cross?

Firstly, make sure your contact information is easy to find. You don't want anyone to play detective or go on a treasure hunt to find a way to reach out to you. Consider adding your contact details on every page or having a dedicated 'Contact' page. This could include your email address, phone number, and links to your professional social media profiles.

Secondly, consider offering more than one way to contact you. Some people prefer email, while others might want to connect on LinkedIn or Instagram. Providing multiple contact points makes it easier for people to reach you in the way that's most comfortable for them.

Lastly, make sure to respond promptly when someone does reach out. This doesn't mean you need to reply immediately, but timely responses show professionalism and respect for the other person's time. Remember, communication is a two-way street.

So, as you continue building your creative portfolio, remember to make it easy for others to contact you. After all, what's the point of showcasing your unique style and talents if no one can reach out to appreciate them?

Include testimonials and references

When you're building a creative portfolio, showcasing your unique style and talents can become even more impactful if you have others vouching for your skills and abilities. This is where testimonials and references come into play.

Testimonials are direct quotes from clients or colleagues who speak positively about your work. These can be a powerful tool because they provide social proof. When potential clients or employers see that others have had a great experience working with you, they're more likely to trust you and consider hiring you. You can sprinkle these testimonials throughout your portfolio to emphasize your strengths.

Here's a quick tip: when asking for testimonials, encourage people to be specific. Instead of a generic "They did a great job," a testimonial that says "Their innovative design increased our website traffic by 30%" is much more powerful.

References, on the other hand, are people who can attest to your work ethic, skills, and personality. They can be former supervisors, clients, or colleagues. Be sure to ask permission from your references before listing them and give them a heads up if they might be contacted.

Remember, your creative portfolio isn't just about the work you've done—it's also about how you've positively impacted others with your unique style and talents. Including testimonials and references can help to illustrate this in a compelling way.

Show your process

One of the most effective ways to help others understand the depth of your talent and the uniqueness of your style when building a creative portfolio is by showing your process. This is where you pull back the curtain and let viewers see behind the scenes. It's not just about the finished product—it's about how you got there.

Perhaps you're a graphic designer. You could show initial sketches, color palette options, different concepts, and revisions. Or maybe you're a writer. Sharing your brainstorming process, early drafts, and editing phases could be fascinating to potential clients. For photographers, showing the raw, unedited photos next to the final edited versions can be a real eye-opener.

By showing your process, you're revealing several important aspects about your work. First, it demonstrates the depth and breadth of your abilities. Second, it shows your professionalism and dedication to quality. Finally—and perhaps most importantly—it gives clients a glimpse into what it might be like to work with you.

So, don't be shy—let people see what's going on behind the scenes. It's a fantastic way to showcase your unique style and talents in your creative portfolio.

Keep it updated

Building a creative portfolio isn't a one-time task — it's an ongoing project. After all, you're an artist, a creator. You're continuously crafting, designing, and innovating. And your portfolio should reflect that dynamic energy and growth. Keeping it updated is a surefire way to showcase your unique style and talents over time.

First, make sure to add new work regularly. Did you just wrap up a project that you're really proud of? Don't wait—get it into your portfolio right away. This doesn't mean you should add everything you do. Remember, quality over quantity. Your portfolio is your highlight reel, so make sure it's showcasing your best and most recent work.

Second, don't forget to periodically review and prune older pieces. Maybe a piece that seemed fantastic a few years ago doesn't quite meet your current standards. That's okay—growth is a good thing! Don't be afraid to remove work that no longer represents your current skill level or style.

Finally, keep an eye on the overall design and functionality of your portfolio. Web design trends and technologies change quickly. A portfolio that looked sleek and modern a couple of years ago might seem dated now. Regularly updating the design will keep your portfolio looking fresh and engaging.

Remember, your portfolio is your professional face to the world. Keeping it updated not only shows your commitment to your craft but also lets your unique style and talents shine.

Make it responsive

Building your creative portfolio in today's digital age means more than just showcasing your unique style and talents on a computer screen. It's about ensuring your work looks fantastic on any device—be it a smartphone, tablet, or desktop. That's where the magic of responsive design comes in.

Responsive design allows your portfolio to adapt to the screen size of the device it's being viewed on. This means your images, text, and other elements resize and rearrange themselves to fit the screen. So, no matter how someone is browsing your portfolio, your work will always look its best.

But why is this important? Well, think about it from your audience's perspective. If someone visits your portfolio on their smartphone and the images are too large, the text is too small, or they have to constantly scroll sideways to view your work, it can be frustrating. This could lead them to exit your portfolio before they've seen all your fantastic work.

Besides, having a responsive portfolio also tells your audience that you're tech-savvy and up-to-date with current trends, which can only be a plus in the creative industry. In essence, a responsive portfolio is a win-win — it enhances user experience and showcases your unique style and talents in the best possible light, irrespective of the device.

So, as you're building your creative portfolio, remember to make it responsive. It's not just about being user-friendly; it's about ensuring your work always leaves a lasting impression, no matter the screen size.

Show your personality

Building a creative portfolio isn't just about showcasing your unique style and talents in your work. It's also about showing who you are as a person. Your personality is a big part of what makes your creative work unique, and it's something that potential clients or employers will be interested in.

Think of your portfolio as a conversation with your audience. You're not just showing them your work, you're telling them about yourself—your interests, your passions, your values, and even your quirks. This can help you stand out from other creatives who might have similar skills or styles, but not the same personality.

So, how do you show your personality in your portfolio? It could be through the colors and fonts you use, the way you write about your work, or the personal stories you share. Maybe you have a unique sense of humor that shines through in your work, or a love for a particular subject that's evident in your projects. Whatever it is, don't be afraid to let it show. After all, it's your uniqueness that makes your work special.

Remember, your creative portfolio is a reflection of you—not just as a creative, but as a person. So, don't forget to let your personality shine through. It's one of the most effective ways of showcasing your unique style and talents.

Proofread everything

Here's a little secret to building a creative portfolio that truly showcases your unique style and talents: proofread everything. Yes, even your portfolio needs a good, thorough check before you send it out into the world.

Why is this so important? Well, imagine you're a potential client or employer. You're impressed by the work you see, but then you spot a typo. Suddenly, that incredible impression starts to wobble. It might seem like a small thing, but mistakes can distract from your work and even raise questions about your attention to detail.

So, what should you look out for? Spelling and grammar mistakes, of course. But also check for consistency in your formatting and design. Make sure your contact information is correct and easy to find. And don't forget to check the functionality of your portfolio—do all the links and buttons work as they should?

Proofreading isn't just about catching errors, though. It's also an opportunity to refine your message and make sure you're really showcasing your unique style and talents. As you read through your portfolio, ask yourself: does this piece of work reflect my skills and style? Does my description capture the process and the outcome? Is this really the best example of what I can do?

Remember, your portfolio is a representation of your professional self. It's worth taking the time to make sure every detail is just right. So, proofread everything—it's the final polish that can make your creative portfolio shine.

If you're looking to create a standout creative portfolio, don't miss the workshop 'Making an Amazing Portfolio' by George Dyson. This workshop will provide you with expert tips and advice on how to showcase your unique style and make your portfolio shine in a competitive industry.