Concept Art Online Portfolio

The concept art industry is pretty competitive, so you need to pull out all the stops to stand out among your peers. Here, we’ll talk about building a concept art online portfolio that will leave a lasting impression.

Whether you want to work as a concept artist for games, films, or animation, you'll be up against some stiff competition. The internet has made it so much easier for digital artists to hone their skills, but with limited openings and high standards for young applicants, it takes more than just talent to make it in the industry.

For a concept artist to thrive, they need to be smart about marketing themselves. So, what is the number one marketing tool in a concept artist’s arsenal? A professional concept art online portfolio. 

Instagram pages and Behance accounts are great, but they’re not exactly professional or customizable. With a portfolio, you can make a site that’s uniquely yours and that perfectly sums up everything about you as an artist. 

But how do you go about creating an impressive concept art portfolio? Let’s take a look.

How to Create a Professional Digital Art Portfolio

These five tips should set the groundwork for building a professional concept art site.

1. Find Your Signature Style

Before you start applying to different companies, you should be able to distill your signature style or creative identity in a few words. While it's good to be a versatile artist, you don't want to be labeled as a "jack of all trades, master of none". Having a signature style or identity (or something close to it) also helps potential employers and clients know what to expect of you and visualize the kinds of projects you can take on.

2. Know Your Audience (and What You Want to Do)

By audience, we mean the types of studios and companies you want to apply to. Different studios have different styles, cultures, even preferred software. Figure out which companies you want to apply to and do thorough research on the kind of work they put out, the kinds of artists they're looking for, and what you could contribute to the company.

And when you put your site together, be sure to include artwork that highlights the kind of work you want to continue doing. If a company likes you for what's in your portfolio, they're likely to request similar from you. So don't include anything that you're not a hundred percent familiar with or enthusiastic about.

3. Pick Your Best Work

A portfolio site is a digital gallery of a creative's very best work—a showcase of an artist's talents, capabilities, and potential. Don't include every artwork you've done in the span of your career. Instead, narrow down your options to about 20 pieces of artwork. Try to show a range of skills with your concept art portfolio—include images that highlights your talent at anatomy, clothing design, lighting, background painting, etc.

4. Write a Professional but Conversational Bio

Your bio is where you discuss your academic and professional background. You can also include some insight into who you are outside of art and design. Discuss relevant interests, values you strongly stand by, inspirations, and the like. However, make sure you can strike that balance between a professional and a conversational tone. It's important to keep things professional, but you also don't want to be too stiff and boring.

5. Don’t Forget Your Contact Information

This is the second most important part of your bio after your work! Include your email address, phone number (if you're okay with that), and social media sites that you use to post images.

Digital Art Portfolio for Students

Just like the industry, art schools can be quite cut-throat. The very best schools only accept a select few applicants each year, so you need to be sure your portfolio site pops. Aside from the aforementioned tips for building a professional concept art portfolio, here are three more that art students should always remember.

Research the Requirements

All schools have their own set of rules and requirements for applicants. Never apply to an art school without researching the requirements first. Consider your folio as your first test. Schools aren't just looking for people with the best images, they're also looking for students who can follow instructions and get creative despite the guidelines.

Be very mindful of the set requirements of each school you're applying to—some schools won't even consider an application that doesn't follow the rules.

Variety is Always Welcome

While it's important to have a signature style or a "brand" as a professional, students have more leeway to experiment with different styles, subjects, mediums, and techniques in their applications. Schools want applicants who are capable and willing to explore different facets of art.

Go Above and Beyond the Minimum Expectation

In all the work that you do, and in all the images you'll include on your website, you need to do your best. Don't settle for pieces that feel "just okay". If you're unhappy with a design, chuck it.

And remember, your future professors will be able to tell if your work is uninspired and devoid of passion, no matter how technically good your images are. This is why it's important to use artwork that aligns with what you believe in, and what you want to keep doing.

Digital Art Portfolio FAQs

Still a bit confused? These five FAQs might have the answers you're looking for.

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Choose the Right Type of Online Digital Art Portfolio

If you want to find work in the uncompromising concept art industry, you need to find a way to build a portfolio that's impactful and unique. With Format, you have all the tools to build an impressive digital art portfolio. Whether you're a concept artist, graphic designer, illustrator, photographer, or UI/UX designer, you'll have tons of templates to choose from that can complement exactly what you do.

Sign up now and enjoy the first 14 days for free. Once your free trial is done, you can keep using Format for just $7 a month!

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