Make A Killer Portfolio In 2022

So let me ask you guys this question What is Graphic Design Portfolio? Maybe it’s somewhere to archive your work. Or maybe it’s a place to show off your work. Well, actually the real answer to both of these questions is NO.

In today’s post, I think you’re going to change your mind about exactly what a graphic design portfolio is. Or should be and how to use it to get more jobs, more success, and more clients in 2022.

That’s one of the biggest problems that most designers don’t remember the main objective of a design portfolio.

It is there to gain steady clients and steady workflow. You want to convert clicks into clients essentially. And yes I’ve spoken about this in other posts. But today I’m going to give you the biggest secret and the biggest key to getting things right in a design portfolio.



Sure we’re graphic designers we’re visual people. So we want to showcase and show off our skills and the things we create cool animations and graphics and so on. Sure these are okay to have in your portfolio actually they’re a good thing to have in your portfolio.

But they shouldn’t be the main focus. In your design portfolio, you need to show how you can add value to a potential client. And how you can solve their problems. Problem-solving is exactly why people come to you. They want to hire you to solve them a problem in their business.

They need something designed visually for their brand or their business and that’s why they’re coming to you. And you need to understand that you are a problem solver first and foremost. A potential client wants someone who can solve their problems without creating any new problems.

So they don’t want to hire somebody who’s incompetent. Someone who’s going to waste time, which is also their money. They want to hire somebody, who knows what they’re doing. Who understands their problems and can solve their problems. So if that’s the main reason why people come to you and to your design portfolio. You want to obviously show that you can solve problems in an easy-to-access way. Hence that’s where your design portfolio comes into play.

What Can You Do?

So what are some of the things we can do in our portfolio to show or demonstrate, we can solve problems to potential clients. In each project, you should outline the problems that the client had. So that might be the brand’s logo was outdated and it needed kind of revamping for the modern era. You can do this visually in your portfolio or just for the paragraph of text, just outlining the synopsis of the project as a whole.

Then of course show your design process from an idea concept, sketch to the actual design. And how it kind of addressed those problems and how it resolved these problems.

Also, it’s really good to explain or to talk about the hurdles. That you might have encountered in the project and how you used your skills and your experience to overcome those hurdles. Because pretty much every single project or every single thing in business. Will have hurdles to overcome or jump over for that matter.

Also, it’s really good to use technical terms and terminology. That showcases or just show how much of a professional you are and how competent you are as a graphic designer.

So we’re talking about things like the layout – resolution – bleeds just things that graphic designers know about and talk about.

how to make a graphic design portfolio

What Turn People Away?

So yeah, this is all well and good. It is you know a good start and it is off in the right direction. But if a potential client comes onto your portfolio website and they click off in an instant without actually being able to you know. Observe all of these problem-solving skills that you might have. Then it’s pretty much useless isn’t it.

Some things that cause your potential clients to click off are. Just messy unorganized portfolios misguided designs or project workflows. All portfolios are just uninspiring.

how to make a design portfolio

The Hook

As a graphic designer, you should know that any designs you make need to first hook the attention of the audience or the viewer. And then you deliver the message once you’ve got their attention. The graphic design portfolio is not really that much different. You want to you know grab their attention get them hooked in. Then sell them yourself or your skills and your services.

Also, like any graphic design project you need to know your target audience. You need to know the person or the kind of people you are targeting with your designs.

You need to ask yourself! What Kind Of Clients Are You Looking For? What kind of people are you looking to attract.

Is it going to be low budget start-up business or is it going to be the higher end. Are you going to be mainly targeting clients in the 50s 60s or clients in their 20s and 30s. These are the kind of questions you need to ask. Because you need to tailor your portfolio to that kind of person. Of course, your niche sector will come into this as well.

So if you’re someone who works on coding or UI design. Your portfolio is going to look very different to someone who’s an illustrator for example.


The portfolio you have is something that should be very scannable. Meaning that someone should come on to it and can just quickly look through and just gather the information. They need in two to three minutes at the very max. So you really do not want convoluted, confusing you know very very complicated kind of layouts.

You want someone to come on there with these look around with ease. And then contact you with ease, the keyword there being ease of course. Also, you do want to add a personal touch to your portfolio and also an about page. But what do you actually put in this about page.

There are some designers who take this too personally. They start talking about their hobbies their interests or maybe their religion whatever. You should leave that out of your portfolio. Instead, talk about your strengths as a designer, talk about the tools that you use. Talk about the kind of projects you reminisce about and you enjoyed working on in the past.


Then of course you want to get an opinion on your design portfolio from you know some people that you respect and you value as designers. But also I would say that you should get someone who’s a non-designer to someone you know who has nothing to do with graphic design whatsoever. And get them to you know log on to your portfolio scroll around and ask them what they think of your portfolio in the blunt honest term.

Do’s and Don’ts

portfolio dos and don'ts

This is the part that you really want to listen to. This is the do’s and don’ts when it comes to designing your portfolio. Do showcase a small amount of work without introducing too many projects. That will become confusing and overwhelming to any potential clients.

Do show off any CSS skills that you might have you know. So you can have the animation the flashy things going on in your portfolio.

Don’t feel like you need to fill every single bit of blank space with something.

Remember less is more and they want to be able to travel around your portfolio with ease.

Don’t include old or outdated work from your past. Do use a strict color and style theme throughout the entire design portfolio.

Do talk about difficult times that you experienced in a project and how you overcame them.

Don’t password-protect certain design projects. Because this is just going to hinder the accessibility and usability for anybody coming onto your portfolio.

Do not make the navigation overly complicated for anybody coming onto your site.

Do have an about page and also have a contact page so you can convert those clicks into customers.

Do make it obvious what kind of designer you are, so a brand designer logo designer illustrator photographer and so on.

Do not make endless scrolling page-style design portfolios. And by this, I mean where you keep scrolling down and down and down and down and down.

You want things in separate pages orderly and neatly laid out. Do use mock-ups to design your portfolio. But remember guys that value is king. When you’re selling your services to potential clients.

The value you can offer them is the most important thing. So do remember to demonstrate the problem-solving skills you have. Just showcase your skills in general pretty much. Your portfolio is not a way to show off. It’s a way to show that you can solve problems to whoever needs a problem being solved.

But anyway I hope that made sense and I hope that you got something from today’s post.

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