As I talked about in yesterday’s post, I was lucky enough to meet with Debbie Millman, head of the national AIGA Chapter, Chair of the SVA Branding Program, VP at Sterling Brands, and host of the Design Matters podcasts on DesignObserver.com — the lady has quite the resume, to say the least. I met Debbie in her office at SVA, and we spent an hour and a half discussing her career, books, my thesis, the subject of joy, and she critiqued my portfolio. Turns out we both took the Milton Glaser Summer Program, which explains our love for Milton Glaser.
Some of the meeting was a bit painful. It’s always hard to give someone your portfolio, and let them have their way with it. I’m so glad I did because I needed someone with NO connection to my work and projects to give me 100% objective feedback. Debbie flipped through my entire portfolio, then literally took the book apart, rearranged and cut out pieces, and when we were done, I had a sleek, narrowed-down, simple portfolio. While she was cutting, pasting, and rearranging, she said, “You’re going to love this when I’m done.” I didn’t love it when I was in her office, but the next morning, when I made the changes, it all made perfect sense.
1. Never put a piece in your portfolio just to show you can do something.
2. Don’t put work in your porfolio just to say you worked somewhere.
3. A good portfolio is your 6-7 strongest pieces.
4. Start and finish with your strongest pieces.
5. LESS IS MORE.
The last project I showed Debbie was the Visual Landmark postcards I did in type II, that I never really knew what to do with them. They’re not in a book, not on my website, they’ve just in a ziplock bag sitting around. My studio mate suggested I use them as leave-behinds on interviews, doubling as a thank you note. Debbie looked through my collection and she picked out her favorite, which I signed for her. In return, she gave me the piece at the top of this post! I now have a Debbie Millman original for my studio.
On the internship front, the interview at Jonathan Adler went a-mazing I think. I’m not going to jinx anything, but I feel really good about it. I was also able to move my schedule around to work more days. If all works out, I’ll be at JA Monday, Wednesday, and Thursdays. On Tuesday & Friday, I will be in class literally all-day. In what time I’ll complete my thesis … I have no idea. I’m just so happy things are falling into place. I didn’t think I’d be able to do it all, but if this internship works out, I just might.
Totally unrelated, but my studio mate showed me this today, CUTEST thing I’ve ever seen. I dare you to disagree.