My portfolio website journey through the last years
A portfolio site is your personal online space where you can show off your experiences and accomplishments. It’s something that everyone is asking for if you are looking for a job or new client. It is particularly important for people working in the creative or tech industries.
I bet some of you would agree that portfolio website is not always kept up to date, especially when we get busy with usual work stuff. Compared to the projects or work we get paid for, a personal site becomes less of a priority hence it’s often left on a side.
Nevertheless, it’s always worth to go back to it and do even occasional maintenance work, update the copy and put more updated images and screenshots of your most recent projects. As our knowledge expands, it’s also beneficial to make sure your portfolio showcases the most current set of your skills. You never know when the new opportunities will come up so let’s be ready for them as they come.
Saying that I usually update my portfolio websites only when I’m looking for new job opportunities. Suddenly I need to update my profile on different sites before I make a relevant application.
This reflection on portfolio site makeovers leads me to the next point of this post. I visited the Internet Archive Wayback Machine site and browsed through my old files to see my journey from 2010 until today.
Let’s have a look!
How did it all start
2010 was a turning point in my career. I got my first paid job in the tech industry. When I was on the lookout for a suitable role, I set up a blog on WordPress to write about things I’ve learned. Ten years ago this kind of online presence plus being an ambitious woman seemed enough to get your foot in the door and enter the web design agency environment.
Later on, in 2010 I got admitted to Greenwich University and completed an MA degree in Web Design & Content planning the following year. During that year as a student, I gained a solid knowledge of web design and development basics. It helped me establish what areas I wanted to focus on in my future career.
Degree completion made me feel eager to learn new skills and work on more exciting projects. My expertise allowed me to create a simple but a stand-alone website made of a few content pages. I found it very motivating and empowering to be in full control of this online project. I was also crafting my brand. The final result wasn’t perfect, wasn’t responsive and had a few bugs, but it still counted as my achievement and gave me an opportunity to practice web design and development.
Learning and improving
The version of my portfolio website that came in 2013 was more mature and more professional. It was a complete site overhaul. It needed to be because my knowledge in front-end development expanded so much in 2013 that redesign wouldn’t be enough. Furthermore, I also wanted to change the look and feel of my online portfolio.
The result was satisfying, and I think I managed to present my skills in a clear and engaging way.
Different look and feel, the different approach
I didn’t do any development or design work on my website until 2017 when I was again making myself available in the job market.
This time I concentrated on the message I was trying to send across rather than on the visual side. Typography changed making text easier to read. Purple and grey colour palette felt more professional than green and orange. The website turned into a landing page where I focused on the most significant projects. After a few years of being a designer and developer, there are a lot of websites to choose from. I felt this selection would give a better overview of my skills.
A website is never finished
And here we are at 2018, and my portfolio website is going through a fifth iteration. Is it needed? I believe it is, especially that I am shifting from full-time roles to going freelance. I need new better platform for my articles, public speaking at tech events and projects.
However, I don’t think this is a final version. A website is never finished.