Student portfolio - grade it!

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

Hello!

I'm a graphic design student; I've worked on numerous projects, but I'm still very far from good enough. Therefore, I'd really like you to take the time and look through my portfolio - http://geminianum.carbonmade.com/ - making a few comments, choosing best/worst from it, etc. It'll help me a lot. :)

Thanks in advance,
Cheers!

Neven

dirtcastle's picture

Suggestions.

1. Find at least one font that stands out and has some personality. And then use it. Your fonts are very plain.

2. Work on you grids. Tighten the positive spaces and open up some of the negative spaces. And be more "geometrical".

3. Think about content. Many of your designs are not bad, but nothing reaches out and grabs. There is a plain-ness to most of your work.

That said, I would guess thatyou could greatly improve your work by looking to other designers for inspiration.

Who inspires you?

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

Thanks!
I can see the plain-ness you're talking about... I really am looking around for inspiration, everytime I have to design something.. But I guess it's just a matter of practice and experience, to get a good result.

I like modernist work like Vignelli, but really prefer David Carson, Sagmeister and similar postmodern designers.

dirtcastle's picture

There you go! Just figure out what it is about those guys that inspires you... and then straight-up imitate it. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. When you are starting out, your mantra should be "Imitate, imitate, imitate!"

But definitely spend some time hunting down personable fonts and compelling images. Without those, you got nothing.

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

You're right - I guess I am scared of imitating the masters... :)
Still I'd like to know, which of the work in my portfolio do you find the worst, and is there anything good enough to stay?

dirtcastle's picture

The magazine layout stuff is probably the most professional-looking.

The "Dani Sira 2009" is a nice layout, if a bit unpolished with the large font being totally inappropriate.

The Benbello identity is not terrible and you could probably keep that in to fill out the future portfolio.

As for the stand-alone artwork, I would leave that out.

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

Thanks! I agree with "Dani sira" being bad typographically. :)
Do you find the "clarke2006" poster all bad, or is it just the typography?
I love typography and admire new typefaces, but I'm a student and it's impossible for me to buy them just yet...

dirtcastle's picture

The main problem with the Clarke 2006 is that it does not have a strong layout. Sometimes artwork can actually get in the way of good design. And I can't say I'm into the illustration either. But that's just me.

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

Hello again! :)
A year has passed, I did some new work - hopefully something better, so if you can find the time to look at the designs on http://geminianum.posterous.com and comment on the pieces, I'd be really grateful. I'm near the end of my collage so I have to decide what to keep in my portfolio and what to throw out... ;)

Neven

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

Just a short comment...anyone? :-/

Mat Lucas's picture

I've looked at your old link and the new one just a minute ago and in my opinion you have come on leaps and bounds, I really enjoyed your "The Road" cover, Great feel.

I felt a style developing in the second 13th of October post, a real craft/Sagmeister feel to it without obv stealing from him, but I could see your influence. :)

Mat.

TheFlyOnTheWall's picture

Thanks, Mat, for taking the time and making a comment! Much appreciated!
Sagmeister is one of my favorites... ;)

dirtcastle's picture

Definitely some big improvements in style.

I would explore ways of creating a bit more tension with some energetic grids. Right now, things seem to be floating a bit too loosely in most of your compositions. Sometimes that is appropriate. But whenever you've got type, it's usually good to be tight with it and establish clear hierarchies and spatial relationships. Or at least suggest a reasoning behind why things are placed where they are.

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