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Building a Strong Portfolio

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A GigLoft Guide

“Without a portfolio, how could I hope to be hired?”

I remember when I created my first portfolio. A potential client had asked me for samples of my work, and it had made me realize that I only had my Facebook & Instagram to show my skills.

It wasn’t enough—they wouldn’t hire me without.

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Why do portfolios matter?

Portfolios build trust. They prove your ability to think, create quality work, and get results for your clients. Without one, we can’t know what you’re capable of doing. If you want to get hired, you must show your work.

Portfolios also matter because they show you are actively working. Clients simply cannot hire people who want work, but aren’t actively working on something.

The more relevant your work to the clients’ needs, the more likely you’ll get hired.

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What’s in a strong portfolio?

“Great design puts its message first.”

Great portfolios make it easy to see your work. They don’t distract from it. Beyond that, a great portfolio could look like almost anything.

Sample projects

Include some non-sensitive client details, project scope, etc.

Writers should link to their published articles.

Designers should show off their designs.

Video creators should upload their videos and embed them on their website.

You get the idea.

If your work doesn’t lend itself easily to visuals, write short case studies explaining the work you’ve done, and sharing screenshots & recordings for reference.

A way to contact you

Always include your contact information! Put it somewhere obvious—like at the very top—and leave plenty of space around it.

A short blurb about you

Something to get to know you as a person and as a professional. Consider writing this as the story of how you got into your trade/freelance career.

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How do you create a strong portfolio?

You can use simple tools like

or
Crash
Crash
to publish your work, as well as the traditional, Squarespace, Wordpress, etc.

We highly recommend Notion for your first one, because:

  • it’s easy to maintain (automatically saves & syncs everywhere)
  • it’s a beautiful, clean design that puts your work front-and-center:
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Later on, if you’re looking for something more customizable, check out

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Need a better portfolio?

“If you want to get hired, you must show your work.”

Use this template to build a badass website using Notion

It comes with instructions for publishing your site to the Web, too.

Along the way, learn best practices for…

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Setting up a strong portfolio
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Buying your website domain & hosting package
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Creating projects to publish on your portfolio