Saturday, 27 April 2013

Portfolio review with Matt Bray

As Matt reviewed my portfolio before christmas, I thought it would be a great idea to have a follow up review with him now I have completely changed my portfolio and see whether the change was positive or not in his opinion. I contacted Matt online as I feel at the moment my portfolio works best in PDF form and was really interested in Matts opinion on my actual illustration work more so than the presentation. 

Here is what Matt said, below: 

"Just taken a look at your new portfolio and: wow! You’ve moved on so much since Christmas! 
I love the new pieces that you’ve created for your FMP around the topic of female identity. Your style has become even more strong and recognizable, and suits the subject matter perfectly: you’ve clearly chosen a theme that you feel passionate about and that enthusiasm shows in the illustrations.
My favourite pieces are the set of postcards: I love the simple yet deliberate colour choices, the offset shadows that give a kind of ‘print-effect’ and the energetic line work that gives the pieces a sense of urgency. The images you’ve designed for ‘the minx’ are awesome too: lovely typography and very nice composition.The only advice I can really give is: keep up the good work! Keep on creating exciting, unique and stylish illustrations on the subjects you feel passionately about."

His response was extremely positive which I found really encouraging. I don't respond to criticism well, and that is not because I disagree with it, but mainly because I have a tendency to get disheartened and this discourages me, rather than spurring me on to rectify the problem. I am aware this is something I must see past as not everyone will love my work, but for now, positive feedback is what makes me work harder!

I am extremely passionate about certain subjects, and it is important to me that this reflects in portfolio, and that my enthusiasm shows through. Its really great that Matt picked up on my enthusiasm for these subjects, as I think honestly I work best when I genuinely care about what I am illustrating. My portfolio previously reflected barely any of the things I would hope to be commissioned for in the future, so its great this is no longer the case.

It is important to me that my work reflects actually my way of working and being a recognisable as a piece of my work, as the portfolio I previous shown Matt had in a sense two different styles, a digital way of working, and a hand rendered way of working, neither of which really felt like 'me'. I'm glad that I have now found a way to merge the two which works well and really does feel connected to me. I am pleased that Matt has pointed out areas of my work which I really want to show through ('energetic line work that gives the pieces a sense of urgency', 'simple yet deliberate colour choices', 'the offset shadows that give a kind of ‘print-effect’) as I have never felt this before with my previous pieces.

It was great to hear basically everything I want to hear when someone is looking at my work and has spurred me on to work even harder!

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