to include, or not to include

After spending a couple hours on campus this morning, I’m rethinking my approach to the portfolio.  While I do want the portfolio to convey a clear message about the design/build  and green building work I’ve done over the last decade, I don’t want it to dominate over the art/graphic design stuff I’ve done both in school and since then.  Editing your own work has got to be one of the more difficult things to do.

It was very helpful to see four very different, yet successful, graduate design portfolios at the college this morning.  A couple were a relatively basic summary of undergraduate work, chronologically following the design studio sequence.  Four studios, four projects, eight pages.  A little dry for my taste, BUT, it was clear, concise, and at the end of the day it got that student into the master’s program.  If I remember correctly, one of those students had just finished their undergrad degree so summarizing that work was an appropriate perspective to take.

I, on the other hand, finished my undergrad degree twelve years ago so I definitely want my portfolio to represent my professional work since then as well as other graphic endeavours along the way.  The paintings in this post were done in watercolor about seven years ago on a friend’s farm in southern Oregon.

One of the portfolios I saw this morning had a couple of pages devoted to drawings and other media, where the student compiled unrelated sketches, drawings, and paintings to demonstrate their graphic abilities.  That got me thinking that maybe I should include more of the creative, non-construction related work I’ve done.  I have piles of this stuff that has been sitting on the sidelines because it’s unrelated to the larger built projects I’ve been focusing on.

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