Portfolio in the making – considerations of design and competition.

As my final project, I will be creating a portfolio for myself. My site will feature an about page, a resume page, and a page that will showcase my work. Since I don’t have much work to showcase yet, I want to focus on the design of my page, and hopefully keep adding content to it over time, as I gain both experience and projects to showcase. Below are my considerations on criteria of effectiveness, aesthetics, functionality, audience, and competitive sites.

Effectiveness criteria:
  • Ease of use (easy to find information).
  • Clear page descriptions. I want to make sure my audience can easily find what they are looking for from the descriptions I offer.
  • Informative and in depth about page. Ideally I would want a potential employer to get a good idea of whether or not I would be a good fit by reading my about page.
Aesthetics:
  • Clean, simple, minimalist.
  • Simple color pallet.
  • Simple font.
  • Individuals not distracted by images, colors or clutter. I want them to focus on the information that I put on the site, not the decorative design. Of course the site still has to look nice, but I would opt for a simple, professional look.
Functionality:
  • Make sure the site works on all platforms – and especially mobile.
  • Make sure I pick a font that works on all platforms (so stick to those “safe” fonts like times new roman, ariel etc.)
  • Make sure all links and plugins work.
Possible audience:
  • Employers, more specifically from different industries.
  • Internally in companies, if I am working in a matrix organization and I am being seeked out for a specific project based on my specific skills.
  • Recruiters.
Competitive sites:
Although I am somewhat undecided about the direction I want to go in once I graduate from the program, I am very interested in social media communications and strategy, and therefore identified the three following as possible competetive sites. I chose two individuals, and one company. I thought all three could be competitive sites depending on whether I am working independently or looking to work in a company. Here are the three sites I chose:
  • http://amyrainey.wordpress.com/
    • Amy is a graduate from the MCDM program, and specializes in social media strategy.
    • I like the simple colors and design of her site.
    • I like both her header and her sub header, which very precisely and concisely lets the audience know who she is.
    • I do not like that her “about” section is on the front page, I would instead keep the front page free from too much information, and make a separate “about” page.
  • http://www.shiftimpact.com/
    • This is a Seattle based Social media strategy and consulting company.
    • I like the look of the site, it seems well organized, and the design and colors are simple.
    • I like the drop down menus in the menu bar, and the contact form on the front page.
    • I don’t like the bright orange color they use, and I also don’t like the background on the front page. I would choose a plain white background.
    • I would also prefer colored social media icons over the gray facebook and twitter icon on this company’s front page.
  • http://shaunacausey.posterous.com/
    • This is a portfolio for a professional based in Seattle, specializing in communications and social media.
    • I like the somewhat simple design of the page, and the vast amount of information on it.
    • I do not like the cluttered front page and I would instead choose a simple static front page with the classic menu bar that links to other pages.
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About Fina

MCDM-student at the University of Washington. I recently relocated to Seattle from Copenhagen.

2 responses to “Portfolio in the making – considerations of design and competition.”

  1. Kathy E. Gill says :

    Hi, Fina! Good start on the final project plan. You’ll need to think more deeply about those audiences as you develop three personas — the sooner this happens, the better, as the persona you pick as primary should influence your design.

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