Revamping the analog portfolio case.

Revamping the analog portfolio case.

Every once is awhile, you need to take a little inventory of the old portfolio. Usually, it happens whenever you get ‘forced’ to do it with an upcoming client meeting or an interview. You find the trusty book in your office or studio and gently blow the dust off of it and thumb through the work. Hopefully, you can find stuff that needs a little update and replace it with some new pieces. Many times though, I have looked at the case or book and thought that it might be time for a new look, you know, give it a bit more – oomph. And, unfortunately, it usually gets put off until the next time you have to get it out – reminding you once again.

Well, this revamp is something I’ve been considering for some time now, although I haven’t been able to put much time into it until – you guessed it, a client meeting. Nothing works like a deadline.

Now, I know what you’re probably thinking, why bother with another portfolio case when there’s that nifty, slick new iPad and tricky portfolio software to go with it? Well, no reason. Other than the fact that I haven’t been able to pick up one of those sweet little numbers just yet, but it’s on the list (a long list)!

Sure, an online presence is very important these days, too, but so is a nice book to show when your laptop or iPad’s not available. And there are some things that new electronica just can’t reproduce in a tangible and visceral way, like craftsmanship. Most of all, this particular revamp of the ol’ book is costing me quite a bit less out of pocket to put it together. And after I finished, I don’t think it’s much of a compromise.

So, here’s what I got. It’s an 11″ x 14″ Vivid Series phenolic portfolio case from Case Envy. I selected one with a frosted cover, so I can keep my branding look through the front and has a nice white back cover to keep a clean exterior. There are two screw posts keeping everything together with two flexible hinges front and back. They offer all sorts of accessories to go with it like phenolic hard shell covers, padded sleeve outer cases, CD holders, business card holders and extender kits to name a few.

To complete the presentation, I have also put together a personal leave-behind, press-kit and a black, press board portfolio box for carrying printed samples, press sheets and the like. The press-kit includes my biography, client list, design book and awards references, sample sheets and a What to expect sheet for new clients. I have to say that I got the inspiration to put the leave-behind together from a great article written by Jeff Fisher a couple of years ago. It’s been a very useful piece.

So there it is – my new portfolio format. Maybe you need your own portfolio overhaul. Something to think about. Because now, more than ever, you have to dazzle potential clients and employers with a nice, original and clean presentation to get the gig.

I even included a little QR code experiment for linking my portfolio to a section of my website with more information. It worked. The first person to review this page got the idea and tried it out. Pretty cool, eh?

Well, there it is. What do you think? Have you got any presentation tricks or tips you’d like to share? Tell us about it.


  • Kyle Chicoine

    Leighton, your new portfolio case is simply beautiful! I think a lot of designers (including myself) have forgotten that having a hard copy of your portfolio is just as important as a web portfolio. This was a great reminder to myself and other designers out there.

    • leighton_hubbell

      Thanks, Kyle. It never hurts to keep your print portfolio in check. Glad you could stop by and take a look.