From the Editor
M e g a n Lane Pat r ick S e n io r Edito r
During the 11—gulp—years I’ve worked at HOW, technology has made it easier and easier to discover designers and evaluate their work without ever having to handle a physical portfolio. Firms and freelancers are diligent about keeping their websites up-to-date and, mostly, simple to navigate. But, until recently, it’s been tough to keep an eye on new talent, specifically students in their last years of school. I’m not sure when things changed, but suddenly it seems like nearly all art school juniors and seniors have their own digital portfolios, even if they only have school work to show off. When it came time to choose our list of creatives to watch for 2011, all I had to do was open a folder called “Young Creatives” and click through the links I’d been collecting over the past year. The hard part was narrowing the list down to the 14 we were able to feature in this issue. (See “Young, Hungry, Creative” on page 96.) But don’t think all a designer needs to get noticed or hired is a simple website. If you do any print work at all, you’ll still need a physical portfolio to show that work off in its best light. So, yes, that means now you have two portfolios to keep current. You’ll want to check out “Flaunt Your Work” on page 92 to learn exactly what it takes to create effective digital and physical portfolios. Portfolios aren’t just for students, freelancers and firms, though. It’s high time that in-house design groups started doing a better job of promoting their work both inside and outside their organizations. You’ll notice that a large part of this issue is dedicated to the winners of the In-HOWse Design Awards.
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These talented solo designers and teams have taken a big step in getting more recognition for their work, not just from other designers, but from corporate higher ups. But that recognition will only happen if they promote their wins to internal clients. If you’re part of an in-house group, do you have an easily accessible portfolio of work, something your clients can peruse whether you’re in the office or not? Maybe you should. And maybe you should design it to be not just a showcase, but a tool for educating clients about your capabilities. What all designers must remember is that a portfolio, whether print or digital, is a living document of your best work. Keep this bit of wisdom from creative director Adrian Shaughnessy in mind: “You should never consider your portfolio finished, and you should always be dissatisfied with it. The day you sit back and say, ‘My portfolio is great,’ is the day you are dead in the water.”
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