How to create a portfolio?

When displaying your work there are two ways of approaching it: collecting artwork, projects and information or questioning your career path. The first case consists of compiling your work, which is generally accurate. But it is the second option that leads to creating a portfolio. Asking questions is essential for a portfolio to be fully aligned with the main theme that runs through your work.

To build a portfolio means to understand yourself as an artist.

Therefore, it is not about filling up white space on a template or making a timeline of your work. It is a reflection that transcends the shape of your work, in which you must call into question your identity as an artist. It’s important to understand that a dossier is not a portfolio. A dossier explores the specific interest of a project, whilst a portfolio presents the person. The process that leads to answering this question of identity is a portfolio, and the first step is to think about is your artist statement. This statement is a condensed, written form of the underlying concept or structure of your portfolio. Once you have the core statement, you can move on to editing. When the time comes to choose your work, it is important to keep returning to that statement, which forms the unifying thread of the portfolio itself. The content, form and presentation strategy must always refer back to the idea or question at hand.

Understanding the portfolio, understanding my work.

When staging the images, you must ask yourself why you do what you do. It is important to understand why you are attracted to certain themes, why you use one methodology and not another, or why, for example, you show affinity for certain languages when constructing images. The most difficult part when creating a portfolio is probably cutting and editing your work, but this is basic for editing. If something doesn’t reflect your core values, then you have to be brave and get rid of it. It is important to avoid too much diversity in terms of concepts, as this creates a weak structure.

A portfolio is more than the summary of your work, and creating one requires a diligent process that, in the long run, will be worth it and will help people to understand what you do as a photographer and as an artist. Once you are clear about the why, we can develop the strategy and choose a platform that will cater to your particular needs. You must take into account that your goals change and your work evolves, so a portfolio is not a static object, but something flexible that also grows with you.  

15 Jan 2019 by David Villaba diaz

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