advanced photoshop

Top Tip: What makes a great portfolio website?

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Tips & Tutorials, by Anna-lisa Saywell

Created with Prosites, Ian Combie’s online portfolio was named Behance Site of the Month. We look at what makes it work

Top Tip: What makes a great portfolio website?

Tip one:

If, in Crombie’s words, the homepage is the “suit you wear to an interview”, this one is a classic tux. The greyscale layout is simple but intriguing, with a colour-changing bar highlighting portfolio options to visit and an understated animation bringing all the elements into place on opening

Tip two:

An embedded Twitter feed lets visitors know there’s an interested and active face behind the work. In such a minimalist site it serves as a good way to add personality without indulging in a lengthy About Me paragraph, especially with relevant Tweets from an artist engrossed in the industry

Tip three:

Contact details are easily found on the homepage and offer the three basic pieces of info you’d expect: email, phone and Twitter. Side-stepping the easy mistake of creating a lengthy form that gives visitors no other option, this format and layout make it easy to get in touch

Tip four:

The page links are visible from all areas on the site with the text changing colour to show you where you’ve been. Pages are uniform with big, clear images of each project and the homepage is reproduced at the bottom to make sure you’ll never get lost

Tip five:

Top Tip: What makes a great portfolio website?

Each project is key-worded to let the visitor know exactly what type of work was done and what genre it falls under from Motion Graphics to Typography. Sticking with the notion that less is more, the text is short and to the point, giving necessary project information without wasting a word

Tip six:

Top Tip: What makes a great portfolio website?

Accessibility is a major factor in the fluidity of any site. Videos are embedded in the smartly designed and fitting Vimeo player. While personal preference comes into play here, Vimeo is designed for the professional creative community and is a great alternative to a more amateur option such as YouTube

For more information or to look at the site yourself – visit:



  • Nicely done! In terms of the site’s design and functionality I could say its well planned and successfully produced. So, I have nothing else to say but to congratulate all the people behind this project. FXDD