English 351 Portfolios
Your last project is to construct an online portfolio to display your various projects. Your portfolio should contextualize your work in a way that someone who visits your site from outside of class can understand what is going on. You submit your final work for the class by emailing me (or posting on our blog) the url of your portfolio. In addition to the portfolio, you will need to write a reflection about your final project which you can email to me separately.
Generally speaking the best portfolios are simple and attractive, and include a brief paragraph about each project. They often have one strong design element or echo a strong design element from each project.
Please pop your websites into new windows out of the portfolio. (Setting the target of links to "_blank" is an easy way to do this.) When you use a portfolio to explore a website, it is incredibly tedious to use the back button to work your way back to the portfolio in order to explore a different website. I find it far easier to close the window and be back to the portfolio.
A Note on Portfolios and Job Searches
A portfolio is often used in a job search, and if you are seeking a job as a web designer, a strong portfolio is a must. As a web designer your portfolio is your first and in many ways your most important job search document as it is a living example of the quality of your work. At the same time, you may not want to put personal information on the web. I personally feel that you should not include your address or phone number in any online portfolio or resume, and you may be reluctant to include your primary email. One solution is to set up a separate email account just for the portfolio and job searches so that people have a way of contacting you. However, for English 351, it is up to you whether you include your name on your class portfolio. It is your name and your decision.
Want to browse old portfolios? Use the drop down menu on our class home page. Most all of the links go to portfolio pages, though some older links point to individual projects.
Want to dream about what is possible? Here are two portfolios from past graduate students in our Digital Rhetoric Program.
Fall 2000 Portfolios:
Here are some example portfolios with comments.
Notice how this student picks one key design element from each site to echo on her portfolio page. Very effective use of repetition. This strategy works best when you have sites with strong visuals that you can echo in the portfolio.
This portfolio shows off a single strong design element. Notice the animated gif. People often use their portfolio to show off their most recently learned technical trick which is fine with me. Jamie created it in Imageready which is a graphic program for web graphic included in CS3.
A good portfolio is both attractive and contextualizes the projects for a readers who are not familiar with the class. The informal chatty tone works here.
Simple, attractive, well contextualized.
You can use humor in a portfolio.
I am not a big fan of frames, but Amanda uses them here very effectively.
The interesting feature about this portfolio is that the comments about the site are giant links titles. Point the mouse at a link and wait to learn more.
Adding animation can be an effective design element, but it can also get really old when you return to the potfolio to look at new material. Pop the projects into new windows.
The BW to color rollovers are a nice touch. I also like that you can get to the work from the text link and a graphic link.
Molly uses a show/hide element behavior in an effective way to present her commentary. If you use a background image like she did, be sure to set it to no-repeat.