Daandrey Steyn, Visual Communication Facilitator, CTU Training Solutions.
When you work in the visual arts, for example as a graphic designer, your portfolio is your resume. Daandrey Steyn, Visual Communication Facilitator at CTU Training Solutions, says, “Visual communicators don’t need to rely on a certification or qualification to tell potential employers what they can do. They can use a portfolio to physically illustrate their creative talents and what they are capable of. “
A portfolio is a showcase of an individual’s abilities in terms of visual communication or graphic design and should include work that highlights the breadth of their skills. Steyn has some key tips to consider when compiling a portfolio of their work, especially aspiring students in the fields of visual communication or graphic design.
“It’s important to note that, contrary to popular belief, you don’t need art as a matrix material to be able to study visual communication or graphic design. All it takes is a portfolio.
He says the typical portfolio should include in the region of 10 works of art. “First and foremost, include a few examples of your drawing. Graphic design uses designs as a means of process, taking what’s on our mind and making it real by putting it on paper. Moreover, the design itself can become the end product, in the form of an editorial illustration or even a fantastic work of art, like a floating maze, for example.
Steyn points out that the individual does not need to use a pen or pencils to make a drawing – they can use any medium or combination of mediums to create their design, including paint.
“The portfolio should include two types of works of art. The first one we call the observational drawing, which is looking at something and trying to represent it on a piece of paper as accurately as possible. It can take the form of a still life, where you take fruits and vegetables, arrange them and draw them.
“Alternatively, you can look at your surroundings – either the natural environment or a built environment – and use perspective to create the illusion of three-dimensional depth on a two-dimensional surface such as a piece of paper.
“Finally, there’s live sketching, which is about drawing people in their daily lives or focusing on a hand, face, or whatever else that shows how accurately you can represent reality. “
The second type of artwork that should be included in a portfolio should represent creative art. “This is where the visual communicator conveys a message or tells a story by merging physical and digital works of art. This can be done by using social media or by commenting on how social media informs how we see ourselves in our current situation, or how we engage with information in the digital age, or even just by showing the stories we all know and love.
The bottom line, according to Steyn, is that graphic design and visual communication candidates should have fun building their portfolios, showcasing their personality while showing off what they are capable of.
You can watch the full interview on this topic here.