Resumes are designed to show a body of work in a nice, neat package—but what happens if your work is a collection of creativity? Portfolios, reels and demos are often what many use as a resume in the creative field—including graphic designers, musicians, artists, writers and directors. However, many starving artists find that in applying for jobs in the corporate world, even when they are creative positions, these bodies of work are not enough.
Those who are working from a professional creative portfolio in applying for an “artistic” corporate job should consider some of the following tips when creating their resume.
Keep it Clean and Avoid Images
Even if your body of work is entirely visual, it is important to keep these artistic elements neatly packaged in the portfolio. Adding photos of work can be rather distracting and take away from the format that employers look for when accepting applications.
While it is essential to avoid funky fonts and imagery in a resume, creative professionals can show off their appreciation for aesthetics in the way they format their document. For those working in the design field, this is particularly important, as a tidy and coherent resume format can hint to the overall quality of art one produces.
Put Your Portfolio Online
When creatives walk into an interview, they often tote a large portfolio with them to physically showcase their art, designs, publications and other work. Others may bring a DVD or CD that contains selections of their work. While this can be a great addition for the interview day, it is always a good idea to give an employer a look at your work ahead of time.
Although some employers will accept digital portfolios along with resumes and cover letters, an online portfolio can be an exceptional way for individuals to give off a professional vibe. Whether working with images, audio, video or written material, there are many online hosting services that can make it easy to display multimedia works in a crisp presentation.
Just as many professionals put their LinkedIn profiles on their resumes, it can be appropriate to put a link to an online portfolio on a creative-oriented CV.
Translate Your Work into Skills
When employers review a portfolio of written, audio or visual work, they are looking to be impressed by the final product of the candidate’s accomplishments. However, recruiters may not appreciate all the detailed skills and direction an artist put into their final creations—a resume is a great place to showcase these talents.
Whether one has worked for a direct employer, has freelanced or finds himself anywhere in between, it is important to list major projects on a resume. Employers will be looking for evidence that quantifies creative experience; for instance, a director may note the number of individuals he or she managed during a project.
It is also important to highlight any monetization related to a project. Did your ad copy or photography boost sales for a client? Was your music sold and featured in a commercial or video production? Did you receive an award or nomination for a particular piece? These are all vital elements that can translate well onto a resume.
Apart from looking at the specifics of each project, creative professionals should also look at their entire portfolio as a way to review their core competencies. While many artists can boast creativity, some may discover that they also have impeccable capacities for time management, cost efficiency and problem solving.
Getting It All on Paper
Those who have been credited in a production, featured in a print publication or placed in an art gallery show can also put these accomplishments at the end of the resume to give employers a brief look at one’s career.
How to Adapt Your Creative Portfolio to a Corporate Style Resume