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An architecture portfolio is the most crucial tool for professional architects or undergraduate students to showcase their fruit for the effort to employers or clients. If you have several projects and want to organize your works to stand out from the crowd, you’ll need to build up a solid portfolio to present your skills and reflect your attitude, your design process, and your character.
If you are building a professional architecture portfolio, read on to understand the golden principles as in this article, we will be covering different types of architecture portfolio, the format for an architecture portfolio, guides on how to start an architecture portfolio and most importantly, how to create an online architecture portfolio.
An architecture portfolio is the organization of an architect’s works, which includes a selection of sketches, drawings, images, photographs, texts, and anything that records the essential process that leads to the final architecture work. It demonstrates the architect’s skills, methods, and the service they can provide.
Without an architecture portfolio, it is hardly possible to determine an architect’s capability. An architecture portfolio is ultimately the key to winning a dream job for an architect.
Depending on the two stages of being an architect, your portfolio will have separate focuses:
As a professional architect whose purpose is to gain new clients or employers, your portfolio is the bridge between your capability and the client’s demand. Simply put, your architecture portfolio needs to establish trust between you and the client. Therefore, past projects, completed works, or related experience (if any) would be excellent.
As for architecture portfolio for employment, you should tailor your work to fit the specific position. Selecting and organizing the most related aspect is a must, whilst it is also applicable to demonstrate some other areas of experience and skills.
As a student, your architecture student portfolio website assists your application for higher studies, jobs, or internships. Including your drawings, 3D rendering shots, and prototype photos are ideal.
Depending on architecture portfolio formats, you can categorize most architecture portfolios into three types:
Yes, people still print out their architecture portfolio. The benefit of having a paper architecture portfolio is to present your work on the physical, tactile quality of the paper. Also, it’s ideal to keep track of your architecture work overtime or to present professionalism.
It may be cumbersome to carry around, but, if printed right, the remarkable and sublime sense of paper is irreplaceable. Some architects will work with graphic or editorial designers to make their printed portfolio another piece of work.
Digital or online architecture portfolios are digital files such as an architecture portfolio in PDF or online architecture portfolios shared on websites such as issuu, Archinect, Behance, and more. Digital and online architecture portfolios are cheaper, easy to share, build, and easily update.
With a digital architecture portfolio, you won’t have to print a hard, expensive copy and worry about getting it folded or dirty.
It’s easier to share with multiple architecture firms or to the architect community. You can easily find architecture portfolio templates and use online portfolio makers to save time on color schemes or formatting to use it on organizing the content. Lastly, digital contents are easier to edit, delete, renew, and add new projects.
An architecture portfolio website, compared to a digital architecture portfolio, uses your own web domain. This gives you more control over how the website could establish your personal brand and match your architecture works.
A portfolio also enables your work to be easily shared, found, and updated. In addition, you can add multi-media such as imagery, video, animation, audio, and more on your website.
If you are creating an architecture portfolio, no matter what kind, make sure that you include all these elements that are crucial for an architecture portfolio template.
The architecture portfolio front cover will be the first thing that an employer, client, or manager sees. It should be designed in a simple aesthetic and include your name and a title (often just “Portfolio”).
The “About” page is to describe yourself as an architect or as a person. Make sure not to include too much irrelevant information to make a professional architecture portfolio.
After your about page, include your resume or CV in the architecture portfolio. The design of your resume or CV can be coordinated with the architecture portfolio’s design.
The content page can be inserted after your resume. Mark different catalogs with page numbers and a clear table of contents. This way when anyone wants to review a specific work in the architecture portfolio, they can refer to the content page.
Aside from including all the right elements, format also make sure to use the right formats in your architecture portfolio.
Typically, your architecture portfolio could be A3 or A4, depending on how you would like the readers to feel while flipping over your architecture portfolio. Needless to say, do follow the requirements if the institute you are applying to specifies the format.
When designing editorial content, remember one rule: Less is more. Keep your layout simple and easy to read. Give space for your sketch, photos, and pictures to speak for themselves. Margins give the readers some room to absorb your portfolio content and text.
With the same rule applied, keep your font type simple. You could use stylish fonts on your cover, but your normal text should be easy to read through. For a printed portfolio, your paragraph text should be between 10-12pt. For a digital architecture portfolio, your paragraph text should be at least 16px.
A typical portfolio has 30-50 pages. That gives you enough space to articulate the essence of each architecture project without losing the focus on specific needs from the architect firm or clients.
Follow these steps to start making your architecture portfolio:
The main purposes for making an architecture portfolio are to: apply for a new job, pursue an education or academic program, record and document your progress, or build your brand and market yourself.
Knowing the purpose of your architecture portfolio allows you to identify your readers. You should create your architecture portfolio with your readers in mind. With that being said, tailor your portfolio to target your audience.
Next, choose a suitable medium that matches your audience’s preference. Consider the pros and cons (as mentioned above), and decide on a medium that can help you convey your value to your audience.
You should aim to show the best and the most relevant of your works in your architecture portfolio. Tailor the project’s selection to meet their needs.
These projects should showcase your successful and diverse experiences and your talent for transforming ideas into architecture works.
Compile and collect the materials that you’ll need in your architecture portfolio, which might include:
Decide on an architecture portfolio format, meaning the size of your architecture portfolio. This will affect how much information the readers will be exposed to each page, and how the images and texts look juxtaposed together.
Same as the graphic design process, choose the color palette for you to utilize throughout the entire architecture portfolio. Consider the personality and character you would like to express.
Use a template to unify your architecture portfolio design. When choosing architecture portfolio templates, you should note that there is no best architecture portfolio template that “one size fits all”. A good architecture portfolio template will leave space for personalization, and you should adjust the template to tailor for your audience.
In addition to making your own adjustments, make sure the architecture portfolio template gives you adequate space to demonstrate pictures and arrange descriptions at the same time.
Finally, you can design the front page cover according to the overall style and atmosphere of your architecture portfolio. If you’re not sure where to start, think of the best highlight in your works or your most distinguished accomplishments. These can be the hooks on the architecture portfolio cover to attract people to read your architecture portfolio.
Here are 4 more steps for architects who are considering creating an architecture portfolio online.
Before you start making, know your tools. Choose an architecture portfolio online maker that meets your needs.
Here we recommend 3 free online portfolio making websites:
The free online portfolio maker on CakeResume is suitable for professional architects and creators with other expertise. It offers user-friendly tools for any rookies to build a project-based portfolio.
CakeResume’s online portfolio maker features several unique functions, including:
Another great feature of CakeResume’s free portfolio maker is that it allows users to create multiple portfolios under their profile, allowing them to organize and highlight different projects in a way that is most efficient and convenient for viewing.
CakeResume portfolio maker allows you to add multimedia materials to your architecture portfolio. As an architect, you build your architecture portfolio for free and upload your works in no time to be seen by other professionals.
Behance is a free project-sharing website by Adobe. It is where creators showcase creative works and discover inspirations. On Behance, the visitors browse through all of your projects. Once you have signed up on Behance, it is free to use the platform. There is no restriction on the number of architecture projects you can publish.
Coroflot is an online community for designer and creative professionals. It offers free online project makers for creators and architects. On Coroflot, you can browse through jobs, creator’s profiles, and projects. Once you have signed up, you can upload media and work on your architecture portfolio projects.
To maximize the function of an online architecture portfolio, collect the types of media you would like to include. Organize the file types and make sure they are not too large in size to upload.
Next, arrange your files into a template to make sure your architecture portfolio template works. The template you choose should be flexible enough to ensure all projects look alike in style but can be customized to make alterations such as image sizes, add paragraphs, or insert different media.
Finally, as you are building your architecture portfolio, refer to good examples. Good examples are the ones that clearly present the idea, design details, visualized process, and explanation of the architecture. Use these examples to think of what are the essential content to put in order.
We have put together a list of 10 architecture portfolio examples that may help you get a clearer idea and some inspiration for creating your own architecture portfolio:
Having an online portfolio website is highly crucial in paving your career path as an architect. With CakeResume’s online portfolio maker, you can create your very own online portfolio that showcases your true skills and creativity. Create your free online portfolio now!
--- Originally written by Wu Chao Min ---