My first social media banner design for portfolio

Hello friends, I have designed this social media banner in illustrator. Please let me know how it is. Any suggestions for improvement will be highly appreciated.


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Have you got Nike approval for using their product/photo/logo?

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The overall look is good – far better that you would expect from a ‘first attempt’, in fact. There are issues with type sizes, hierarchy’, etc, but the big problem is that Nike logo. Can’t see them being all that happy having their logo appear on a template that is ultimately going to have someone else’s logo on. At best, you’ll end up with a cease and desist order. Depending how litigious they are, they could take a far more aggressive stance.

Even removing the logo may not be sufficient, if the shoe is recognisably their product.

For me the other issue is templates themselves. I could prattle on for hours about branding, consistent communication and why they are not effective for clients in the long run. However, from our side of the fence, I find they are the ‘sweatshop t-shirts’ of the design industry. They are cheap, they undermine the value of design and contribute to the now ubiquitous race to the bottom.

Addendum: It seems my spidey senses were correct. I did a fairly quick google search and found three other very similar images on template sites.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I am guessing you are just looking for a quick buck. Producing templates – and even worse, all but copying other people’s templates, they’ve likely copied from elsewhere – is not the way to go for either long term career building, wealth generation, or any sort of self-satisfaction and integrity.

I’d suggest shelving the whole idea and doing something worthwhile.

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Ah, you beat me to it. You posted whilst I was writing my over-verbose tome! I really need to learn the art of brevity!

Probably the most honest thing I have read in a while! Well said!

Now I’m not looking at it on my phone and on the laptop, drinking coffee and watching Forensic Detective on the ID channel, I can honestly say this is a very basic design.

It’s ok. But I’d imagine, off the top of my head, Nike have their own deisgners who produce far better advertorial templates based on their branding and their brand guidelines.

I get it’s not for Nike, it’s for a company selling their branded shoes - that’s fine, but even sports shops have their own advertorial templates, branding and brand guidelines.

I don’t really understand why a template is an advantage - as a graphic designer working in the industry you’ll design a template based on brand guidelines.

These companies spends $1000’s on getting this right - so that all their stores have the same adverts, same templates, same products, same bargains all displayed the same way.

It’s really unclear from your post why you made this - but as @sprout says - perhaps do something worthwhile.

Thank you so much for your valuable time on my design. :slightly_smiling_face: I would like to explain in detail what I intent to do.

Actually, I don’t have any portfolio yet, so I decided to make one on Behance with lots of social media banners on it. I searched some people’s portfolios, they have beautiful collection of designs. Some have linked their designs to vectorstock and freepik websites to download their templates. In every design they have mentioned three things most commonly -

1) Image not included
2) Free font
3) Fully editable.

So I took the inspiration from there and got into this.

E.g. Behance Portfolio and Templates on Freepik

If I have misunderstood their business plan then I would humbly request you that please correct me. I don’t want to get into any kind of legal trouble by following some plan blindly.

Well, Nike might not appreciate you using their COPYRIGHTED/TRADEMARKED images to make money on templates (for no talent amateurs to use so they don’t have to pay a designer,) no matter how small a fee you charge. I cannot wait to retire from this industry. It cannot be saved.

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Can I ask, do you have any formal design education? You say you are a Graphic Designer. Is this the case, or have you just called yourself one? Have you done any live work? If so, it will be of much more use to you to build a portfolio using this.

The links you have given show examples that your template is pretty much a carbon copy of. Are you just mimicking what you see from others in the hope of building a career. To be blunt; it won’t work.

Let us know what level of education or experience you have so we can point you in the right direction if building a career is what you are looking to do.

By the way, just because a font is free, it does not mean you can resell it on a template. You need to check the EULA carefully.

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No :sweat_smile:

No, I don’t have any formal education in graphic design. I was working as a software developer. But later I realized that it is not something I enjoy. So, I left my job and started studying online about graphic design. I did lots of studies on YouTube and found a job as a junior graphic designer in a company (9 to 6 typical office job). There I worked for 1 year, creating logos, social media banners, website images etc. then after 1 year I left the job and I started my freelance job. I am designing logos and banners for clients , won some logo contests and earned some decent bucks. Now I am planning to expand my working experience and have my portfolio to attract more clients.

My take would be that you need a lot more experience than just one year before freelancing, across a variety of disciplines.

Watching YouTube videos is really not the way to go about this. They are great for solving particular technical problems, but they are not an education.

For me, the preference would be a three-four year degree and four to five years of experience before even thinking about freelancing. You cannot have enough knowledge or experience after one year putting web banners together.

You really need to learn about branding as opposed to logo design, which is, in and of itself, fairly meaningless. You need to understand typography, layout design, advertising, brand identity … the list goes on. In order to be a well-rounded freelancer who can offer a valuable service, you need to have a good general grounding. You have to understand print, UX and UI design, if you want to go that route. Ordinarily, I’d say, you have to learn at least the basics of how to write websites, but I suspect you already have this covered.

The fact you talk about winning some logo competitions implies we are talking about crowd-source kind of environments.

If you are going to make a career out of this, in an ideal world, I’d suggest getting a formal education, then some more experience. If that is not an option, then at very least, get another job in the industry for another three or four years, preferably in an agency that deal in a wide range of areas.

That’s my take – and avoid all competitions (unless it’s something like a D&AD award, of course) and crowdsourcing sites like the plague.

Good luck.

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Hi AristoPromo,
Your banner is overall catching in appearance. Your idea to build your portfolio is good. There may be and are some areas that need improvement. Keep building your portfolio picking such variety of banners. The more you practice, the more maturity you gain.
I would suggest you to pick logos, banners, flyers, and circulars of the top brands and try to practice them and record them in your portfolio. Having done all this, you could be able to compare the shortcomings and that would be your first hand learning.
Keep doing your best efforts.
All the best.

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