5 Steps to Becoming a Photographer
Step Three: Create a Portfolio
Simply put, building a selection of your best photos and clips is one of the most important tasks you can perform as a working photographer. Clients and prospective employers will need to see your work before you’re hired. Therefore, in order to get ahead of the competition and showcase your best work, creating a portfolio is a must.
Ideally you should have both a hard copy (paper) version of your portfolio, as well as an online version. Some photographers even have multiple portfolios categorized by event, theme, or company. This is something to keep in mind as you showcase your work.
Hard Copy Version
First, you must have a hard copy version of your photography portfolio. This should include copies of your photography, shoots, storyboards, and clips and/or drawings (if you work that way). Your hard copy portfolio will come in handy when you attend interviews and will give your interviewer the chance to glance at your work. Because you’ll only be able to show this portfolio in person, you should also have a website version in order to attract freelance work and prospective employers who are seeking a professional photographer.
What your online portfolio should include:
A Bio: Include a little bit about yourself, your history, what you studied in school, your favorite sandwich (if you think it will set you apart from the rest), and links to your blog or social communities, FaceBook Fan Pages, or Twitter accounts. Basically, this part of your portfolio should give potential employers a good feel for who you are and what you can bring (personality-wise) to their company, event or shoot.
Examples of your work: This section or sections (if you’ve studied or worked in multiple artistic mediums, create separate tabs) showcase your skills, talents, and flair as a photographer. This is where you bring your history (or bio) to life. Employed by iStock? Attended the Academy of Art? Those are great accomplishments to highlight on your resume, but without samples companies and employers won’t know what you’re really capable of. They’ll want to see concrete examples. Be proud and show off your work!
Resume: This page should include your up-to-date resume, as well as a printer-friendly PDF version.
Contact: This page should include your email, a PO Box address, and links to your blogs or social networking pages, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter — and ArtBistro!