With the world of design moving and growing at a faster pace than ever before, having a place to build, maintain and store an online portfolio that can be displayed at any time is essential for staying at or getting to the front of the pack. However, choosing the place where your portfolio will live can be a challenging yet critical decision. Like any online endeavor, starting at the right place is the most important step.
Check out a few of the options that are a favorite of many designers. Think about the look and feel you’re trying to create and how the tools on each site work. Find your comfort zone and go from there.
Created by Adobe, Behance is an online portfolio building and sharing site – a social network by designers, for designers. Marketed as a tool to help designers take creative control, the network links up to traditional social media sites for maximum impact.
Within Behance, studios and artists can display individual pieces of work or projects for free. There’s also the option to upgrade to a pro plan to publish (11 monthly or $99 a year). The network is a favorite of professionals looking to hire designers and as such, is taken seriously. Views, appreciations, artist information and other data are publicly available to help with individual marketing. To increase exposure, Behance is an excellent starting point.
If simplicity matters to you, Carbonmade is right up your alley. Created as a simple drag and drop portfolio builder, Carbonmade brings all the tools needed to give a portfolio the look and feel the artist or designer is going for without paying the big bucks – it’s free for up to five projects and 35 images or $12 monthly after that.
Carbonmade requires no knowledge of HTML or coding of any type, and allows designers to connect with other designers in an easy, social-networking style. A favorite of photographers and illustrators, the site’s categorization options make highlighting specific pieces of art or collections simple while keeping the designer in control at all times.
For designers looking to monetize their pieces of art, DeviantART should be their top choice. Based on a commission structure, artists, illustrators and photographers can display individual pieces of art while receiving payouts from the stock photography-like site model.
Artists are able to create a personalized profile and multiple galleries while reaching a large audience for free. Furthermore, each designer remains in control of which pieces of art are sold in the DeviantART shop, which remain for private use only. To monetize a portfolio, DeviantART is a solid starting point.
While it’s not a traditional portfolio builder or display site, Dribbble is essential for any designer looking to grow in his or her trade. Available for free or with a professional option of $20 a year, Dribbble is affordable and worth your time.
Marketed as a “show and tell” for designers, the community exists to help one another by answering questions, sharing pieces of art, screen shots, progress and other design pieces leading to promotion and networking opportunities. If artist feedback helps your creative process, setting up a Dribbble account is a good idea.
Marketed as a free, easy-to-use, standard drag and drop solution that requires no coding or HTML knowledge whatsoever, Dunked is an easy, no frills platform for building an online portfolio.
With a smaller network than some of the other mentions, Dunked gives control to the designer and enables each user to select from pre-make templates, upload images, embed various file types, and to customize to a limited extent. This free solution is an excellent way to start an online portfolio.
6. Portfolio Box
Similar to DeviantART, Portfolio Box combines a portfolio format with the ability to monetize designs and artwork.
Designers can share photos, illustrations, web designs and more in galleries, individual pages, the store and video networks. While pre-existing themes and templates are not available, making it a little more complicated than the drag and drop options – still doable without coding knowledge, however – Portfolio Box is a total package. The solution offers a free plan with hosting of up to 40 images, or a Pro plan for $6.90 a month.
For artists looking to take the “hands-off” approach to creating an online portfolio, Subfolio is the solution of choice.
Still in Beta mode, Subfolio was created to enable artists to display artwork publically or privately without the hassle. The program reads computer file systems and creates websites out of pre-selected folders and content. According to the site, “Folders become sections, files become pages.” Available by request, pricing is based upon the number of files and revealed by the platform after initial contact is made. Simple, sophisticated and hassle-free, Subfolio acts as your private design studio and agent in one.
The options for creating an online portfolio are endless and so are the benefits. Artists and designers have total control over the way their work is shared online. Create a portfolio and get noticed today.