Building portfolio through online freelance sites?

Hello. I just graduated from art school (tho the field was not graphic design). And I’m trying to get a job in graphic design.
To do this I need a portfolio. I thought about participating in design contests on websites like to fill my portfolio, is this a good idea ?

May be a good idea to get some routine, on the other hand gig-economy sites destroy our business.

I’ve heard that utilizing those posts just so you have a real project brief can be a useful idea. It can be hard to come up with a brief on your own without having your personal influences get in the way.

However, if are you looking for actual work on these websites I hear it is a waste of time.

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Sites like the one you mentioned end up being a bidding war to the bottom for cheapskate and naive clients. Then again, if you want to be a graphic designer, you’ll need a portfolio. What you’re suggesting might be a way to help build that portfolio, but it’s an iffy strategy.

Without the appropriate degree (graphic design involves aesthetics, but it really isn’t art) and hands-on experience and knowledge obtained from teachers and mentors in a professional environment (along with the connections that come with it), this is a difficult field to break into — at least here in the U.S.

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If you build your portfolio with boring cheep jobs from a site like this, your portfolio will look cheep accordingly.

What I did to start off was I made up a few fake products and built campaigns around them. My first was “Spudsicles” by Potato Pops. I added “NEW! with real gravy swirl!” and things like that. Catoon pics of happy kids…

This way I had some fun things that showed creativity but ALSO they could see the design through all phases from logo, to advertising, to packaging.

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