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General Discussion

How to create a portfolio without any work to show?

I'm basically a systems admin switching over to development and I want to create something awesome and with some help from this community I decided to create a portfolio however I have nothing to show code and design wise other that my IT experience which I think is irrelevant anyways right? I want to code this but I would be making nothing more than template I feel. Any ideas?

3 Answers

joseph torres, do not short yourself: All experience is applicable to coding (development).

For example, let's say that instead of IT work, you were a customer service agent.

Would that have any transferable skills? Most would say, "No."

But it does.

If you were a great customer service agent, you'd have two very important traits for development: empathy with a team-oriented personality. Not only would you have those qualities, but you would also have the tenacity to endure unruly customers.

Often, code will act like a customer-employee interaction. When it's great, it's great! When it's unruly, you'll want to rip your hair out.

So, let's boil this down to what you've asked, specifically for "any ideas."

The other day, I came across this article: Article. I think it's a great signpost for you, pointing you in a direction that is congruent with who you are, not someone's expectations.

Seriously, if you find a project you are passionate about, the quality will show, as you are more inclined to produce something that you'd be proud of!

Will this "quality" manifest overnight. Nope.

It takes time, perseverance, and plenty of questions.

So if you have any further questions, feel free to ask me or others.

Never Stop Learning

Thank you so much for your encouraging words Mr. 7. The article was inspiring and hit the spot. Believe it or not I went to school for graphic design and animation many years ago when it was still Photoshop 2 I believe. I'm not sure what happened but I never pursued it as I should of. I got into I.T. years after that and loved it. I decided to re pursue my dream of design and creation. You do have to be creative in an analytical way to solve many computer and network related issues. I will add my past experiences in I.T. in a artistic way. Thank a lot Mr. 7.

Mr. 7, I have one more question; I want my portfolio to not just describe what I do but who I am. With that being said, wouldn't colors, article placement, and images all play into this? Maybe I'm be a perfectionist but this has to be about me as much as what I did and what I can do as well. Any thoughts?

Joseph, you're at a tricky crossroad.

Do you want "what" you do to define "who" you are? Sometimes, this is fine; other times, it is not.

Or do you want "who" you are to define "what" you do?

I think if you allow "who" you are to rise to the surface, you will find your answers! :)

Never Stop Learning

By the way, your original reply (comment) is inspiring! You are demonstrating that it's never too late.

Moreover, your background in design and animation are huge factors!

Sure, creativity can be learned, but it's a process that takes, on average, years to hone. So it's good to have that under your belt. :)

Curious, have you always been into the arts?

When you were younger, did you always aspire to be, in some form, an artist?

Did you doodle in every notebook? Draw on your desks?

In other words, if you were so passionate about art, why did you stop?

I'm sure life, the crusher of dreams, interfered.

But now that you have reignited this passion, I want you to do one thing for me and for others: Don't ever let it burn out! :)

Never Stop Learning

In answer to your question, sometimes I feel that what I do is my calling in life and when I don't do what I feel I can get maybe a little withdrawn perhaps. I was always an inspiring artist actually. I love neo-surrealism and one of the greatest neo-surrealistic artists is George Grie. He was a student of Jerry Ulesman who is one of the best photographers out there. Sometimes just looking at my wife or even a picture of a skyline or a simple conversation can inspire thoughts of creativity. Believe it or not, I was most creative in my darkest moments in life. Anyways, creativity is what I'm about and this is why I want to do this... again...

Joseph, the darkest moments are what make us the brightest.

By the way, thank you for those artists. Never had I heard of either until a moment ago. I must say, both create breathtaking masterpieces.

Most journeys worthwhile are arduous.

You have the strength and courage to keep walking. :)

I look forward to seeing what you create.

Never Stop Learning

Sorry for delay, thank you so much for your amazing feedback and direction.

Joseph, I hope you have been doing well.

Since our conversation, I have been investigating topics that might be of interest to you. I found an awesome artist specializing in animations: Sarah Drasner. Here is a snippet of her work.

Never Stop Learning