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Old 04-04-2012, 12:44 AM
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La_ La_ is offline
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i don't have one
but probably should
it's like a pictorial resume
perpetually needing updates
like a real resume only more so

what would be different about a 'looking for work/commissions' portfolio
and a 'looking to get into art school' portfolio?

are they different, really, or is a portfolio a portfolio?

both need to show the scope of variety of work one is capable of, right?
both look for diversity and ability level?

my imaginary portfolio would include (of course the best of what i'm capable of producing - and reproduced with some decent quality):
portrait (male, female), landscape (forest, sea, wildlife (or pet), abstract (and/or surrealism or cubism or...)
pencil/charcoal, oils, acrylics (i would not include a watercolor 'cause i cannot control them).
in reality i'll likely end up putting together a semi - contemporary looking duo-tang with report cover inserts of 5x7 photos of a few of my oils.

assuming it's all, let's say, 50% or above 'quality' work ...
would it get me the job?
would it get me the uni acceptance?

not looking for either, really, and i know it depends on the job/school/jury/pull of the moon, i'm just nosey, curious, unknowing

thanks for your insights, additions, experience in such matters

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Old 04-04-2012, 07:11 AM
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Horsa Horsa is offline
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Potsdam, NY
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Re: Portfolio's

I am thinking I really need to assemble some sort of portfolio, artist statement, bio, CV, etc as well.

I think you covered the bases pretty well. A portfolio should "show me what you got".

One idea I have heard for the digital age is to load a digital portfolio onto your smart phone, iPad, a flash drive, etc. this way you always have a pocket portfolio with you. At least if you carry such a device.
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Old 04-04-2012, 07:28 AM
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Freesail Freesail is offline
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Re: Portfolio's

I am an oil painter and if I am trying to get work or get into a gallery my portfolio contains small prints of my oil paintings on 8.5x11 paper. I include the name of the picture, my name, the size of the painting and short description of my medium such as "oil on gesso wood panel". Each sheet is placed in a plastic sleeve and they are placed into a plastic presentation file that I buy at staples. I would have no more then 20 examples of my art and the last couple of pages I would include a bio, artist statement and maybe a newspaper clipping or two.

I would not go digital. You may use a Mac and they may use a PC. Why make it hard for them to not want to look at your work?

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Old 04-05-2012, 08:09 AM
Gaffette Gaffette is offline
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Re: Portfolio's

A professional portfolio should show a consistent body of work, not a diverse one. When putting together a portfolio for school the object is to show you are experienced with and have experimented with a variety of mediums/subjects since the classes you are taking will be all over the place. So diversity is good there. However, in a professional portfolio Diversity becomes a negative because when presenting work to a client they need to see that you can produce the same quality of work that has the same hand time and time again.
"I've been wrong on more occasions than I'd like to recognize, but there's room in our vocation if we read between the lines." F.M.
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Old 04-05-2012, 09:27 AM
mame mame is offline
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Re: Portfolio's

There is a difference between a resume and a portfolio - although arguably a small difference and some lump it all together into one package:

A resume tells where you've been/is a listing of your experience. A resume should be straightforward and without bells and whistles

A portfolio tells what you can do/demonstrates your skill and creativity. A portfolio is visually "artistic" and imparts who you are - i.e., color, font, type and quality of paper, imagery etc.
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Old 04-05-2012, 11:21 AM
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Re: Portfolio's

Your professional portfolio is really not hard to put together, but I guess a lot of thought should go into it. It does not just consist of visuals. It is everything together.

You should have about 12-20 images, all consistent, not diverse as Gaffette mentioned. I personally stick with 16. These should be your very best pieces of your most recent work in the same series.

Your CV or resume. Mine is a resume, as I do not have any schooling or teaching experience. I do have lecturing experience however. Still, I think "CV" is a more academic version of a resume. I list my awards and honors first, then my solo shows, then selected group shows, then the bibliography, etc.

Your artist's statement should also be in there. Some artists hate writing these, and they are not as easy as they seem, but you should have one. They should not be long! Try to get them under 300 words if you can. Mine is 150 words.

Then some press clippings are good if you have them. Not a ton, but 2-5 is acceptable. I usually include 3. I may also throw in a professional essay from a catalog as well.

My images are digital, not photos or slides. No one wants those anymore. All that money I spent on slides -- down the drain! LOL!

Edit: By the way: I'm speaking of a professional fine arts portfolio to get into galleries, not to get a graphic arts job, or teaching, or anything like this. I assume, or know, this would be quite different.

Last edited by artyczar : 04-05-2012 at 11:26 AM.

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