Graphic Design Portfolio




  • Group work research (see instructions below)
  • Final resume on resume-quality paper (instructor has)

Group Work Instructions (In Class)

In class, get into your collaborative groups and complete the following:

  • Group 1: Create a list of the top ten "DOs" that make a great resume
  • Group 2: Create a list of the top ten resume "DON'Ts"
  • Group 3: Show 5 good graphic designer resume samples. Explain why they are good.
  • Group 4: Show 5 bad graphic designer resume samples. Explain why they are bad.

Create a PDF of your research and be prepared to share it with class.

Quick Resume Basics

resume sample 1


The employer wants to know if you can do this job. All of your past work experiences are valuable and will be considered—so write about them and be specific.

The “rock star” of your resume is the information about you and what you have to offer a potential employer. The ink color, design elements, type style, format, and shape all take a back seat to your information. There is nothing wrong with a type heavy resume with black type on off-white, lightly textured paper.

The resume gets you an interview. The interview gets you a job.

Personal Information

Do not put personal information on your resume. No photos, religious or political beliefs, marital status, number of children, how many pets you have, etc. Just state the facts—and just the facts that relate to your ability to do the job for them and be a great addition to their company. If you get hired there will be plenty of time to get to know your boss on a personal level.

Designing Your Resume

You are applying for a job as a professional designer—Your resume is the first step to showing them that you are a professional designer.

  1. Once you have written and re-written and re-written and polished your resume, type all your information into InDesign and design it.
  2. You must design your own unique resume to help set you apart from the competition. Remember your main focus is legibility. Do not over-design your resume.
    Choose your font wisely! Do not choose fancy, decorative fonts, or fonts that are out-dated and hard to read. You are a professional designer—your resume should prove it.
  3. Choose your fonts wisely. Make sure they are easy to read and not too small. Do not create a resume that you need a magnifying glass to read. 9–11 point type is best.
  4. I strongly recommend that you do not use art, photos, or drawings on your resume. Most hiring managers don’t like them, most don’t look good, and most will not help you get noticed or interviewed. Let your samples page or Web site show your artistic talent, not the resume.
  5. Remember to use white space effectively. Since most of your resume will be text-based, you will have to draw upon your typography skills to create an outstanding resume that is readable, communicates your skills and abilities, and lands you an interview..
  6. Choose your paper wisely. Your resume must be on paper you purchase yourself at the campus bookstore or at an office supply store. Office Max and Office Depot have a good selection.
  7. When choosing a paper and envelope, make sure they are not too dark and do not have a coarse texture. Coarse textures do not allow the ink to print flat and the type will be blotchy and broken.
  8. I would recommend using the large, 9” x 12”, professional resume envelopes. You will not have to fold your letters or samples page when you mail them.
  9. Use watermarked resume paper. The package should state “watermarked.”
  10. Basic guidelines to follow. One page only. One-sided only. Black ink only. One color paper only, (no rainbows, clouds, bright-pinks, etc.) Paper size: 8.5” x 11” only