Please critique my portfolio?


I'm applying for my MArch I, would LOVE some feedback on my portfolio...I've been looking at it for way too long and can't tell if it's competitive, what's working and what isn't, etc. anymore.

After the cover in the final version there will be a resume/table of contents. Any comments are VERY appreciated! 

Dec 8, 12 4:32 pm

Overall I got the impression that the work, layout and graphics were all at a high standard - well done! That being said, I would strongly urge you to re-consider your type choices, especially in the all-caps paragraphs. It comes off as very hard to read (all-caps usually is). If possible, I'd also recommend matching the sans-serif descriptions with a serif font for the titles.

Good luck with the applications!

Dec 8, 12 7:26 pm

Yeah...I've been having some doubts about the font too, maybe I should just change it, though I'm dreading that process...Thank you so much for taking the time to look at it and comment.

Dec 9, 12 1:12 am

hey leah444 u have a nice portfolio ..what is u r background???because u r applying for march 1 so i thought of asking.

Dec 9, 12 2:29 am

I have a BA in architecture from UC Berkeley

Dec 9, 12 2:40 am

And thanks! If you have any criticism I'd appreciate it

Dec 9, 12 2:41 am

Agree about the all caps. Also, are you planning on having text for your title? You should.

I feel like you do too much telling and not enough showing with regards to your ideas. For instance, in the dance project you talk about issues of public and private as your main concept, but then in the illustrations on the next page the difference isn't made very clear and gets muddled by other programmatic details - you might want to have one diagram with only two colors, public and private, and then show the finer details of your program in another diagram if you find that they are helpful. Elaborating on some of your other ideas, like the difference between "observer and observed," would make the project conceptually stronger - showing diagrams of some specific examples of that, such as, say, a public performance or voyeuristic behavior, would be much more effective than just throwing that line in there. I think that those issues continue through your other projects, in that there is too much emphasis in defining your ideas in terms of the arrangement of program, and not enough illustration of the human factors. You could also streamline your descriptions further by cutting out things that are unnecessary, such as on p.12 when you mention the security desk - that doesn't have anything to do with a concept.

The dance project and "urban activity center" could benefit from sketches like you have in your other projects.

On p.15 it's good that you have sketches, but the semicircular layout around the title is visually confusing - your the page needs more white space.

On 19-20, having a busy background behind the text is a big no.

The composition on 21 is nice.  I think that on the bird project you have too many repeated thumbnails of similar-looking study models and should cut some out. Right now it looks like you have 10 thumbnail shots covering only two models - one picture for each of those models is all you need when portfolio reviewers don't have time for redundancy.

The projects starting on p. 22 need to be introduced with bigger headings, like you have in your previous projects - I got confused when trying to find where the title of each project was.

I wonder if maybe you should show some close-ups of your "visual analysis of film" project, since the text isn't readable. I think that project is a keeper though - it looks more sophisticated than some other student attempts at media analysis which I have seen.

For your professional work, do you have any more technical drawings/models of it? You're obviously including that project as an example of your practical experience rather than its design merit, so I would emphasize that side of it and downplay information about the designs themselves.

Dec 9, 12 2:53 am

Thank you so much for taking the time to look at it, your comments are all very helpful. I think you are right about the dance project, it is not conceptually very strong, perhaps more diagrams would be a good addition. I was considering cutting out the chapel project but maybe it is not too bad if I switch around the sketch page? I'll clean up the bird project too... thanks for the input on the Pi project, I got a bad review on that one but I always liked it a lot. Do you think it is unwise to include so many drawings after it? I cant tell if they seem redundant and not "architecture" enough. For the professional work I don't have much more than whats there...definitely kicking myself a lot these days for not saving more drawings and taking more photos. Thanks again!

Dec 9, 12 3:09 am

You should put a garden on one of the balconies.

Dec 9, 12 10:27 am

you suggested a building that hangs precariously over a cliff with no structural supports.  What an ironic place to be.

Dec 9, 12 10:30 am

Don't mean to crash your post @LEAH444, but you have a very well put together portfolio in my eyes. My background is in Urban Planning and i am applying to (M.Arch 1 Programs: UCLA, SCI-ARC, Cal Poly Pomona) I would love someones critique on my portfolio. That would be awesome!



Dec 9, 12 5:26 pm

Thanks again for the font advice changing it made SUCH a big difference

Dec 11, 12 4:20 am

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