Portfolio Review - Midweight Designer

Hi all! Hope everyone is having a solid week so far. I’m Spencer. I lurk around here a lot but don’t do too much posting. Although I’m usually silent, I really appreciate some of the knowledge nuggets I’ve come across on this forum over the couple of years I have been frequenting it.

I’ve been a working designer for a little over 6 years and was in-house for the past three until a recent downsizing. So I found myself digging through files to update my portfolio. My last one was a Behance site with projects from over 5/6 years ago so the update was absolutely necessary before applying anywhere.

This is pretty much my first pass at it and my first time sharing it. I thought the group here might have some really helpful feedback and insight. I’m looking to land another in-house role either as a graphic designer or web designer, so those hiring managers/directors are my target audience.

Feel free to be brutally honest, as I said I’ve been a designer for 6 years, I’m no stranger to harsh feedback. I appreciate your time and any direction you can give. Thanks in advance!

Link to portfolio >> https://sdavidson-design.com/

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It looks like you have some nice work samples, and the work is presented well.

Regarding the site itself, the portfolio aspect of it is fine, and I like that you’re not presenting yourself as a “company” (e.g. Spencer Design Associates or whatever) but that you’re upfront that you’re an individual looking to join a team. That’s all great. What I’m not crazy about is the top of the home page. The "Hi, I’m Spencer and intro copy feels a bit like an afterthought — sort of like the site was designed and then you needed some place to add it so you stuck it on the top of the home page.

Ostensibly, that’s the most important thing is that you’re looking for work, so you’d put that right on the front of the home page. If you’re hoping hiring managers in eastern Maryland are going to randomly find your page and want to call you, it makes sense there. If you are contacting people and driving traffic to the site to see you’re work, the site visitors will be aware that you are looking for work so this could be moved to an about page.

Just my two cents. I hope it helps.


If I were you, I’d ditch the waving hand and mouse-over animations. You’re aiming for a friendly vibe, but it may be a little cheesy. The information about you and that you’re looking for work is important, but I think there’s a better way to present it.

Your menu divides your work into categories, but since you have only six examples, breaking them into categories is only useful if you plan on adding a bunch more.

I like the items in your portfolio—they’re great—but I noticed something counterproductive: the websites and branding you’ve designed for others are more visually interesting and engaging than the design of your own site.

Remember, your portfolio website is the most important example of your design ability in your entire portfolio. It should be as well-designed and engaging as the TWSA or Emily’s Produce websites, as it’s visible on every page.


Hi Steve_O, thank you for your feedback and for taking the time to look the site over, I really appreciate that!

You are absolutely correct that the intro blurb was a bit of an afterthought. I’ve admittedly been on a time crunch with this thing so getting the work together was the first priority but after considering your comment and taking a harder look at the homepage, I think I’ll definitely need to revisit the intended purpose of that intro and see if it’s really in the best location.

Thanks again for the two cents, it very much helps!

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Hi Just-B, first off thank you for taking the time to look over my portfolio and leave your comments…much appreciated!

You make some excellent points here. My aim was to keep the site itself very simple to keep the focus on the work (and also the time crunch with finding a new job), but I wanted to add a touch of personality so I used the mouse-overs and hand emoji. Saying that, it does feel like a bit of a cop-out to fully designing the site and I’m not sold on that decision. I can also see how it might be viewed as cheesy depending on the audience. Based on the comments so far, I’m thinking I need to give that top/intro section a lot more thought as far as wording, styling, and placement.

Another good point about the categories! I do have more work that I will eventually be adding, probably another 4-5 projects so maybe I can just hide the categories on the front end until there is enough work to warrant them.

This is all really excellent and useful information for me while tightening up the portfolio. If I add some more projects or do any major revisions, I’ll share the updated one with you guys as well.

Thanks again!!