You’ve been working for a few years as a graphic designer and built up a nice collection of work examples to help you secure that new dream job, or new freelance clients. Your work showcases a range of design styles and techniques, as well as your creativity.
Unfortunately, that’s not enough to make sure you stand out.
How do you package your portfolio in a way that doesn’t just present your work, but also sells you?
To provide you with some inspiration, we’ve brought together 11 of our favourite portfolio websites, including examples of minimalism and maximalism, as well as some incredible uses of animation.
The ‘Less is More’ style
The Studio Thomas homepage is the perfect example of doing a lot with a little.
‘Design for Bold Brands’ is the tagline, but it’s the simplicity Studio Thomas has employed here that is so bold. The font is jarringly unremarkable, as if it’s been copied and pasted from a Word document, while the colour use is minimal but striking.
The website uses scroll functionality intelligently too. Each scroll shifts the screen to a new ‘slide’, showcasing one of Studio Thomas’ projects. You can then click through to find out more about each project, and again the project pages use the same scroll style for clearly laying out the scope of the work.
A graphic design portfolio website is all about visuals, so text should be kept to a minimum. Lotta Nieminen’s portfolio does just that, with an emphasis on imagery and limited supporting text.
Click through to one of the projects and this emphasis on imagery is even more evident, with Lotta using the work itself to tell the story, rather than relying on too much copy.
The user experience of Patrick David’s portfolio website uses plenty of creative flair, but the design is all about minimalism.
Built on a single page, the site almost entirely uses black and white (though there are some splashes of colour when highlighting his work), while the ‘selected works’ section only hints at each project. Clicking on any of those projects opens them up further, with a link through to his Behance profile to find out the full details.
cristiaan the designer
Cristiaan Jackson eschews fancy animations and web development techniques with her portfolio website cristiaan the designer, instead letting her work speak for itself.
The font is bold and clear, with her work previewed with simple images.
The homepage only features three projects before you get to the ‘more work’ link. Again, her ‘work’ page is low key, with a single image and heading inviting you to click through to learn more. If you don’t want your own portfolio site to be full of ‘noise’, cristiaan the designer is the perfect example of effective minimalist web design.
The ‘More is More’ style
Heather Shaw’s portfolio is a great example of simple UX combined with visual complexity.
The homepage offers a bold palette of colour, while the project pages themselves are full of content about each piece of work.
When you first land on Aries Moross, the portfolio site of Studio Moross, you might think we meant to categorise this in the ‘Less is More’ section.
However, take a second to scroll down the homepage and you’ll be met with an explosion of colour. Studio Moross’ ‘work archive’ seems less about highlighting specific work, but more presenting it all as a single piece. You don’t need to click through to any of the individual projects to know that they’ll deliver bold creative in a fun and exciting way.
We absolutely love the grid approach French artist Malika Favre has used for her portfolio/online shop. Again, like with Aries Moross, it’s the combination of visuals that sells her style of work.
Clicking on any single pane opens up the full image without any supporting text, but it doesn’t need any. The homepage demonstrates Malika’s style perfectly.
Malika’s an artist rather than a designer, which means there’s no challenge and solution to communicate here, but there are still lessons that professional designers can learn from how the website has been laid out.
Creative Use Of Animation
Robin Mastromarino turns scrolling on its head (or, should we say, it’s side) with his portfolio website. Each of his projects dominates the full screen, and you can switch from one bold and exciting design to the next as you scroll sideways through his work. We also love the shimmering effects used during the scroll.
Clicking on any of the projects takes you through to web pages employing the more traditional vertical scrolling, but that’s welcome for exploring what are very comprehensive case studies.
Active Theory, a California-based agency, boasts a website that is positively cinematic. It’s hard to describe with a single image and some text, so click-through and see exactly what we’re talking about — it’s breathtaking.
The Locomotive website feels like a living and breathing organism, reacting to your mouse movements and scrolling with a range of animation techniques. We particularly enjoyed the animated avatars that appear when you hover over each person’s name on the Team page.
Unlike most of the portfolio websites in this list, Damn.graphics’ homepage doesn’t put the emphasis on specific projects, instead showing off Rendi Rainando’s skillset with a wide array of animation techniques and flair. There’s a section for specific work examples too, but they’re secondary to the sheer creativity of the website design itself.
Are you planning out your first portfolio website? Maybe the examples above have made you realise your existing site needs a creative revamp.