DESIGNING ARCHITECTURE PORTFOLIOS: FOR JOB INTERVIEWS
Cracking through an architectural job interview does not solely rely on one’s potential as an architecture student or architect. How you manage to portrait it all, is most important. In the present world, assembling an architecture portfolio can be considered as the best mode of presentation for any architect.
An architecture portfolio can be defined as an architect’s identity. It is an indigenous expression of you and your abilities as a professional architect. It can reveal all your potentials and skills in front of the job recruiter. Hence it is very important to have a creative and interactive portfolio.
So, in this article, we will talk about How to design an architecture portfolio for a job interview? But before that let’s just briefly discuss its importance in the professional world.
WHY DO WE NEED IT?
“Better Communication” is a single most important reason for designing an architecture portfolio. It creates an instant image of you and your professional skills in front of the recruiter; simultaneously giving you an opportunity to create a powerful first impression.
Job interviews are all about creating a ‘good first impression’ and your portfolio is the tool you need to do it.
ELEMENTS AND PRINCIPLES OF DESIGNING AN ARCHITECTURE PORTFOLIO
A good portfolio is one that is unique, expressive and impactful. You need to be smart and creative while designing yours. We want you to have a great professional portfolio. So in this segment of the article, we will talk about some basic elements and principles of architecture portfolio design.
Length of Portfolio – Try to keep the content short, concise and simple. You may have the urge to portrait all you work in a single file, but that’s not a wise option. As an experienced professional, I advise you create two different portfolios. The first one should be short and simple, followed by a long and descriptive one.
The content of Portfolio – A recruiter will always prefer quality over quantity. Your portfolio should be a combination of your best work (not all of your work). So focus on improving the quality of your projects rather than increasing the quantity.
Layout and Sequence – This is one of the most crucial steps of designing a portfolio.
A) Layout – Remember to define a theme and format for your portfolio. This helps in creating a harmonious relationship between all your projects.
B) Sequence – The content of your portfolio must be arranged in a proper hierarchy. You can define the hierarchy of the portfolio on the basis of – the year of completion, design quality or design typology.
Keep it Original – The portfolio should portrait your creativity and skills. Do not copy the layout and formatting of other professionals. Always try to add a personal touch to it.
As a professional, you must always display your original work. Never – ever display someone else’s project as your own. Lying on the portfolio is strictly against our work ethics.
Architectural Portfolio Cover – 1st impression is your last impression. The cover page creates the 1st impression of your architecture portfolio and it important to create a good one.
A good CV and Cover letter – Your portfolio must always be accompanied by a CV and cover letter.
A) The CV must consist of all your personal information in a systematic manner.
B) The cover letter must talk about who are you? What’s your stand a professional? Why should one hire you? Why do you want to be a part of this organization?
No Errors – A professional portfolio must leave no margin for error. It is your responsibility to design it with caution and care. Even the smallest spelling mistake can create a negative impression on the recruiters.
Know your Audience – The portfolio must always be designed according to the demands of the recruiter. For example, a landscape architecture firm would not be impressed by a portfolio full of heritage conservation projects. So remember to choose the content wisely and carefully.
BEST SOFTWARE FOR DESIGNING ARCHITECTURE PORTFOLIO
Choosing the right software can help you enhance the quality of your portfolio. So in this segment, we will talk about the various design software’s, based upon the user’s needs and demands.
Drafting Plans and Elevations – AutoCAD by Autodesk is the best drafting tool available for PC. It is user-friendly software, which comes with an array of simple commands to perform various functions. ArchiCAD is another choice of software available in the marker for easy drafting.
3D Modeling – The IT industry presents us with a wide range of 3D modeling software’s, out of which Google sketch up, Autodesk Revit and BIM can be chosen as the top 3 options (for architecture modeling). Each of these software has its own specialty.
A) Google sketch up – It is considered a good choice for quick and easy 3D modeling.
B) BIM and Revit – These software’s are the perfect choice for creating precise 3D models. The software simultaneously manages to build plans, sections, and elevations of the same 3d model.
Renderings 2D drawings – Adobe Photoshop and Adobe illustrator are by far the best software’s for rendering plans, sections, and elevations. The software with their advanced features and technology helps the user to produce desired renders.
Rendering 3D drawings – Rendering 3D models can be a really tricky business. It is important to select the best and the most suitable software for rendering your 3D model. In my experience V-Ray, Mental Ray and lumion can be stated as the best range of 3D rendering software.
A) V – ray: It is by far the best 3D rendering software ever created. You can easily get it as a plugin for all the 3D software.
Layout and Compilation – Once you are done with all your drawings, you can start compiling the work. Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator are the best offline software for assembling an architecture portfolio.
AMAZING ARCHITECTURE PORTFOLIOS
Now, before you start working on your portfolios; I want you guys to sit back and take a look at these architecture portfolio samples. I have selected 10 portfolio samples; to give you guys a brief idea about the format, hierarchy, template etc.
Portfolio by Derek Pirrozi
Portfolio by Alessandro Fussi
Portfolio by Julija Osipenki
You already know portfolios are all about communicating. The minimalistic approach of this portfolio is its real beauty. The use of simple and clear diagrams helps the recruiter the read the portfolio in a better way.
Portfolio by Lydia Sideri
This is yet another portfolio with a creative and integrating cover.
Portfolio by Simon Rastorguev
The only reason for selecting this portfolio is its short and sweet length. Simon has carefully selected a limited no. of projects keeping the portfolio clear and concise.
As an architect you must (must) have an architecture portfolio. It surely is a time taking job, but the end result is worth it. Not only it makes you more presentable, but it also adds to your value as a professional.
Just keep today’s lesson in mind. I can guarantee that you will be able to design a wonderful architecture portfolio. All the best you guys.
Also check out our last post on Best Business Cards For Architects And Interior Designers
Whatever the stage of your career, your portfolio website will always be the center of all your marketing strategies to grow your creative business. Here’s another useful resource to read for building a portfolio website