Designing a Portfolio That Doesn't Suck

I'm famous!

Well, not really. Not at all actually. 

But I was thrilled to be included in Melissa Milloway's eLearning Industry Article, "14 eLearning Portfolios: A Newcomer's Edition." Her take on portfolios has been really interesting and helpful. In fact, after reading that article and exploring the portfolios of my peers I came back to this site to make a few tweaks. 

The truth is, creating my portfolio has taken a lot more time and energy than I expected, and I'm not even talking about developing the pieces that the portfolio showcases. I suppose I thought, 'I have the work. Now just throw it on a website and voila!' 

Oh, how wrong I was.

This site took several iterations before I felt like I was ready to share it, and then a couple more after I did. At first, it looked much more professional and business-y. The entire site was an advertisement for the services I provide. "Step right up and hear all of the things I've done! Would you like me to do them for you?" It was a fine site, but something about it wasn't me.

And the aesthetics! Normally, I would describe my graphic design skills in a pretty favorable light, but I could not get the right colors, fonts, or graphics to save my life. I was convinced that I needed to hire a web designer because whatever was "in here" was not coming across.

(I would still love to hire a designer to take care of all of this for me, by the way, but I ultimately decided it was best to work out some of the kinks on my own and invest in help later down the road.)

Eventually, I landed on the current design. I realized that I enjoy discussing the projects I've done. That kind of reflection allows me to gather the most valuable lessons learned and draw the greatest connections from project to project. Structuring my portfolio pieces like blog posts with an in-depth analysis provides the most value to me, and hopefully others as well. 

What I have so far, as meager as it is, has been serving me well. I'm happy with the feedback I've received too.

Here's the thing, though: I designed this a while ago. And what does an article like Melissa's make me want to do? Change the damn thing again!  

I love the simplicity of Colleen and  Erik's site. Devlin's is so pretty and Kaitlin's is probably my favorite. She totally nailed the professional yet personal design that I found so elusive.

So who knows? Maybe you'll see some changes here soon. Or maybe I'll just wait it out...

What I can tell you is that if and when I do make some changes, I'll be consulting the following resources. They were invaluable the "first" time around. 


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