I am looking for a career change and web design has always been a passion of mine, all self taught.
Recently I sent various web design companies emails seeking employment with a link to my current website (Aston Villa Fansite, Blog & Forum - Avillafan.com).
The general feedback I have had is that they like my website and are very impressed, however many have recommended I start a portfolio website as this is the best way to go about things.
So I get the gist of things, but what I want to know is what do people look for in a quality porfolio website.
Plain and simple? Over the top showing my skills? Eye Catching but to the point?
You see I really want to get my new career started, so want to do it the right way.
Also, my name has been taken for a possible domain name, so what ideas/advice would you have for a domain name?
These days most professional design firms have workflow down to a science. Usually you have a designer who can put together a layout and hand a finished .psd to the next guy to cut it up into an html template. That gets passed to the programmer(s) who add any necessary backend functionality (database, scripting, etc).
Most firms stick with a standard CMS such as Wordpress, Drupal, Joomla, Viper and/or forum software such as vBulletin, SMF, Invision or Insight.
If I were trying to put together a portfolio for employment, I'd definitely put together some templates for the CMS packages mentioned above to show you have knowledge of the packages.
btw, excellent design on the site you linked to. I'd be interested in seeing some more of your work.
They tend to look for a portfolio showing a number of different sites, each showing a variety of skills in various areas. So if all your sites were built on WP templates, there would be little evidence of your ability to code html from scratch. A variety of layouts, good examples of design skills and use of colours, a few special effects (say some jQuery), some simple but good looking sites, perhaps some graphically complex sites. Perhaps some testimonials from satisfied customers. Do you create just html pages, or can you also do database driven sites? Do your sites always show the same special effects every time, or are a range of effects used, to suit each client's site?
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