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Portfolio Advice for Freshman from Bruce Maddocks, CVPA Studio Art Foundations Director

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PORTFOLIO ADVICE FOR FRESHMAN:

The College's portfolio requirements:

  • twelve pieces of original art
  • any materials, any media, any purposes

Tips:

  • Twelve means 12; SlideRoom will not permit more or allow less;

  • The two most important qualities we look for in any portfolio piece are evidence of patience and evidence of confidence; anyaspects of any artwork that can demonstrate these two essentials is considered positive
  • We do not require any observational drawings in a portfolio (meaning drawings done from life), but they are great to see; if you have them, consider them seriously as portfolio pieces. – they tend to require patience, they tend to require confidence and they tend to be done under tutelage. If you do not have them, don’t fret! There are many other ways of making art that demonstrate patience and confidence.
  • Just because a piece was a school assignment does not mean it isn't portfolio-worthy. If anything it shows us that you've taken dedicated studio art classes.
  • We want to see your own creative voice. Copycatting another artist's character or merely following a tutorial's recipe is not impressive, to day the least. You can be inspired by another artist, but merely copying does not tell us much.
  • For three-dimensional work assemble two or three smaller images onto a single JPEG. This will give a more comprehensive understanding of the sculptural piece without ‘padding’ the portfolio.
  • If you photograph your work please make sure that it is well lit, in focus, and is cropped to feature just your work. Keep background neutral and no background clutter.
  • Make sure to use the capacity of SlideRoom to provide us with information about your work: the title (if there is one); the date completed; the size; the materials; and, if a piece was a school assignment, please give us an idea of that assignment's purpose and specifications. 
  • Consider your portfolio as a whole and a work of original art in its own right; no matter what kind advice friends, family and teachers might give you, it is critical to make your own choices of what to include or omit and to stand behind your decisions.

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