Pretty Face/Busy Mind.
A creative portfolio review
by Eran Thomson
N.S. - Junior Copywriter
This folio starts off with a nice clean presentation.
I love the simple navigation and the choice to limit it to just six sections.
But behind each of those six misleading homepage tiles is a ton of stuff.
Almost all of it is over-explained and not all of it is worth showing.
Writing lots of copy about what the project was, and why, makes your folio un-skimmable.
Busy CDs want to flick through first and read second.
Whenever possible start with the work, then explain it or add a case study to back it up.
The hierarchy matters.
The other thing this folio reminded me of is this:
When you are doing spec work, it not only needs to be better than anything the brand does for real, it needs to seem like it could be real.
I always tell people, when it comes to spec ads, don’t compete with the award winners.
Don’t try and out Nike, Nike.
And don’t take the easy options – hot sauce, condoms, beer etc.
If you can’t do a great ad for those, you shouldn’t be doing ads.
So a choice like Outward Bound is perfect.
But if the messaging of your spec ads feels off-brand, it may not matter how good they are.
Unless they are really, really, great.
The good news is the beginnings of a good portfolio are here.
N.S. makes some common mistakes I see over and over again:
- Putting everything you ever did in your book.
- Putting things in exactly as they were produced instead of the best version of what was produced.
- And not making small work feel big.
But with some more crafting – and editing – we can whip this bad boy into shape.
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Who am I?
My name is Eran Thomson and I’m an award-winning CD and writer/director.
I’ve worked at places like BBH and TBWA, co-founded an agency that got acquired, and freelanced across three continents.
You can shred my folio, roast my reel, or learn more about me using the links in the footer.
I may also be available for a gig if you want to spark some joy together.
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