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Showcase your work online and get noticed!
If you work within the creative industry, a stunning portfolio website that showcases your work to a brand new audience can help you make significant leaps forward in expanding your existing client base. Essentially, it’s your online shop window.
Your homepage is the first thing that the audience will see, and you’ll want to make first impressions last. Here is your chance to show off exactly what you do, so whether you’re an illustrator or a photographer, examples of clear, high quality images that do your work justice are a must.
Introducing yourself and explaining who you are and what you do is important and will help to personalise your site and make it more inviting. That said, working within a ‘visual industry’ means that ultimately the reason people visit your website is to view your work. There is nothing worse than entering a portfolio site where images take second place to reams and reams of text, it instantly makes me switch off and bounce back. Make the page look inviting and make your audience be in awe of what they are to expect from the rest of your website.
For example, Fluid Creativity’s homepage features a carousel of images which previews a few services that we offer in our quirky Fluid-like way, this lets the audience know what they can expect from us as well as giving a taste of our creativity.
The portfolio section of your website will probably be the most creative part as you’re showing off the work which will attract new clients. While making your work is the focal point is once again key, you also need to make sure that it is easy for visitors to browse back and forth through your work.
When curating your work, it’s important to tell a story in just the same way that you would do with our offline portfolio. Also, be sure to keep your work updated so that your online client-base doesn’t miss out on any of your latest work.
Showing off your work can be done in so many different creative ways, whether it’s a slideshow or all of your work on one page which allows you to scroll down. Please find an example of one of Fluid’s bespoke websites, Lazerian.
Having motion graphics feature on the website adds to the illustration. Using the same theme/brand as the website will allow the motion graphics to tie in with the design. Motion Graphics could mean a services video, an insight into how your business works or a welcome message; it’s a great way to communicate your work across to the audience. Check out some of our motion graphics for inspiration.
Everyone knows how important the brand is, keeping brand consistency across your website, company name and product brand is vital. This is where you focus your personality. Ultimately, you are your business, so let your personality shine throughout your website.
A really effective way to do this is by including photograph of yourself creating your next master piece. A brilliant example of this (as well as a great portfolio site in general) is Children’s Illustrator, Emma Hildreth and her image-rich website. Her website puts her illustrations at the fore while also including a simple, plain white to keep an essence of professionalism.
Another great way to personalise your site and engage with potential customers is to integrate your social media account. Be it Facebook or Twitter, a social feed makes it easy for your visitors to keep up to date with your latest projects. Also be sure to include a share button along with images of your work. This means that introducing your work to yet another new audience is only ever a few clicks away. A good example of an illustrator who has made social media a focus of his online presence is Stanley Chow.
If there’s an option for you to include testimonials from past clients then go for it; more and more research is showing that it’s well worth it, with recent studies reporting that 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Also remember as much as you want people to visit your site and enjoy looking at your work, ultimately you want those visitors to turn into potential customer so don’t forget your calls to action, be it a telephone number or contact form!
When done well creative websites are some of the best websites to look at when looking for inspiration, especially as they spend time to make their websites personal. Even the typography on Freelance Illustrators websites are what makes it. Creative sites are like a breath of fresh air, they allow me to sit back and enjoy the aesthetics rather than hunting around to find something even barely interesting.