As part of the portfolio crits organised by Hitch I was very pleased to have one with the fabulous Adrian Shaughnessy!! A great experience personally - he is a genuine designer who like Johnny Hardstaff actually wanted to guide and advise us. With four peers in my time slot we actually had a very positive and complimentary crit where he spoke to us individually on how we can improve and as a group.
The main advice I took was:
-How you present and talk about your work is crucial
-If you send a CV/Cover Letter through the post - make the envelope interesting, how can you stand out more? Address it to the correct person and hand write it = makes it more personal.
-Include a sample of your work in an email - links are ok but pdfs are better (no more than 3 samples of work)
-It is valuable to have a website
-How you approach someone is vital - ask to meet, get to know them, show them your work = it quadruples your changes of working with them in the future
-In email your email essential to put a few sentences about what interests you in the company and why.
Before I went in I had heard several other peer responses to the feedback he gave them - it was great advice so I took it on board! He liked to be presented too = which makes sense!! You are showing him your work let him view it! He liked my book, was very complimentary of it - which is always nice to hear. His advice to improve was to re consider how I presented the images, e.g. make the images larger, small images don't impact. Put into situ my posters etc, agencies love to see them live. He also commented on the fact that I put white on white which he said is a no no! I need to show the contrast. He also liked my opening page - more so because it literally told him what I did (and mine is really boring)!! Overall a positive experience.
More advice on what book he prefers :
-He hates ring binders
-Shove your portfolio in their face
-Make your portfolio a statement about you!
-Likes divider pages - it allows the person to know when a project starts/ends
-Tell the person what going to see - then turn the page
-Explain, make things clear
-Have physical objects to show them
-Should have some web based projects in portfolio
-A portfolio should never be finished – it is like a full time job it needs constant attention
-If you apply for a job and don’t get it, find out why – you may hear something that makes you a better designer.
I enjoyed it, I also liked being with different peers (which I hadn't wanted!) but it was great to see their work and how they presented. He really liked Jo's portfolio case as it looked more professional and it lay nicely on the table. This is something me and Sarah have been considering so I will definitely be ordering a new one!!