Personal Portfolios on the Internet
Having your personal portfolio on the Internet will help you infiltrate the workforce and get your identity 'Out there'.
If you're an up and coming graphic/web designer just out of university, you'll know it's quite hard to break into the workforce. You have to contact employers one by one, spend your time traveling and lugging your portfolio to their offices. Well, things have changed, and for the better let me tell you. Now you can make your own on-line portfolio on the Internet, and send its web page address to numerous design companies at once so they can all see your work easily. You don't even have to leave your house and organizations all over the world can access your work easily.
Individual businesses will get to know your particular style and your capabilities. It's exactly like having an interview but with no schedules to have to adhere to and they don't have to meet you in person! You might even consider leaving your MSN address so people can conference with you instantly. As the quality of web sites are reaching great heights, you can exhibit very detailed artworks in full color and if you gain a little technical knowledge (easily attained) you can even make them interactive. You can also have links to graphics sites that you admire giving employers and potential clients knowledge about what truly drives you.
The amazing factor in the equation is the idea that you'll be sharing your identity with the wider community at large. If one graphics company feels your work doesn't suit their style, they may have friends in the industry who they know will be interested, thus using the age old 'word of mouth' technique to get you out there. Other people that see your site can help you get work as well. They don't have to be in the industry to see that your art is worthy of their projects.
Another plus is that other designers may get in contact with you. Then you become part of a network, a miniature community that helps each other with ideas, access to jobs, and constructive criticism to help you improve your skills. Of course this is true with just about all industries today, the example of a graphic designer is only a good one because their work is often hard to duplicate. This means that normally they can only see one employer at a time. On the Internet you can get a list of all the graphic design companies with your search engine (Eg: Google), and send them all your web site address at once.
Having your personal portfolio on the Web will definitely save you a lot of money that would have otherwise gone to transportation and telephone costs. If you're already an established designer, architect, or freelance writer you can exhibit your work and receive briefs on future jobs without ever leaving your office. Designers can send drafts of the work on PDF files, which are then read and directly commented on using Acrobat reader. What a time saver in the creative process!
However, for those who are still convinced of the old fashioned need for a business card, what would be more simple and straightforward than a card with just your name and one link to your web site. As long as you're keeping yourself in the 'sight' of industry executives, the better chance you'll be in their minds when it comes to making a choice for the job.