Masters Architecture Portfolio critique please!


Hello everyone, 

I am going to be applying to masters programs soon and I was working on my portfolio for that. Can you please give me any comments on it?

Thank you!

here is the link

Jan 21, 20 7:29 am
Non Sequitur

Way way way too much of everything.  Cut it down and set up some sort of hierarchy.

The text is overwhelming and badly organized, some drawings have awkward drop shadows and your sections are teeny: can't read the text.  

You don't have to throw everything you've ever done into your folio.  Pick the best images that demonstrate your design chops and ability to resolve concepts and build around those.  Also, that self picture and software skill graph needs to go.  

Jan 21, 20 8:15 am

will do those edits on the cv but can you please elaborate on the heirarchy part. do you have a good example I could look at ?

Chad Miller

If I may. My professional portfolio is divided up into four sections, built work, renderings, sketching, and physical models. For built work I have maybe 200 words of descriptive text, 3-4 photos, and a plan and or section for each project. The sketching section shows my process. The other two sections are self explanatory.


Regarding the hierarchy as Non Sequitur has said, there are too many images and texts on each page. A reader would have a hard time navigating and knowing where to read first, and likely would have lost interest. Instead, choose the strongest image/diagram and make it larger. The rest could be smaller in size or even be omitted. The color and size of the text are too strong and the are too lengthy, which are competing with your images, making your portfolio flat and bland (Lacking of hierarchy).



Non Sequitur

Clara, hierarchy means setting a narrative. What is most important? what image supports what idea? why is something larger and more prominently displayed than others? etc. Right now, you've thrown everything into a blender and pasted it on a page. It's unreadable.


Take out at least half of the content and you'll have a good starting point.

Jan 21, 20 11:01 am

I use this example a lot because it’s a good portfolio, and this is what you should shoot for. White space, text size, hierarchy, meaning anything that creates a path for your eye to look at the page at different scales. Typically this is done through scaling your images so they are not all the same size. What’s most important or tells the most about a project? Make that image bigger, bolder, etc... Also, creating a graphic language with your text, don’t just put text where it fits, treat it like an image or at the very least a sub image to the graphics of the page. And use grids to set your self up. 

Jan 21, 20 11:02 am

Project #3 wasn't as badly balanced, same advice as everyone else though: less, less, less.

Jan 21, 20 4:39 pm

better, but yes still too much. Rather than taking more things out.. just shrink your text by half and reduce your images by 75% and see how that looks


And maybe do some full bleed images, single image on a page with nothing else can be striking. Better though, yes :)


Thank you all so much, truly


id suggest go grab an accountable architecture magazine (like el croquis or JA or GA or A+U), and copy them

Jan 21, 20 10:13 pm

I think it would be helpful to reduce the amount of color and especially primary colors. Making the work more muted would also help channel the eye to specific things. 

Jan 22, 20 1:57 pm

Unless the program asks for the CV to be included in the portfolio, don't include it. I agree with Non Sequitur, take out the photo and the skills graphics. These types of resumes were popular a couple of years ago (esp. in fields like graphic design), but academic CVs should be more refined and content-driven, though the formatting (font etc.) should match your portfolio. 

I would start by removing all the text (for now), then removing any graphics that aren't adding to the understanding of the project/ project development. If you're having trouble whittling it down, spread it out over more pages. That will make it a cleaner portfolio over all, and it will probably be easier to edit. Once you've done that, add text sparingly as you feel is necessary. 

There are some inconsistencies with formatting e.g. the 3 stacked images on pg 20 aren't the same size, same with the 2 bottom images on pg 23-34. What layout software are you using?

Once you've decluttered it, it will be a lot easier to critique.

Feb 13, 20 3:19 pm

Sorry, I just saw your edit version, it's much better, but still too much. And the formatting issues (size etc.) are still there. Try making the font smaller. The captions shouldn't be bigger than a size 8.

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