Updated Portfolio Constructive Critique Please!

Hey there,

If anyone has some free time, I would appreciate any constructive comments on my updated portfolio. A little bit of background about me is that I grew up in Australia, studied there and after working on small residential projects for 6 months after graduation, I moved to China where I have been given great amounts of responsibility and influence on projects here in a super fast paced environment. I love it.

I sincerely appreciate it,


Apr 5, 13 10:30 am

Hi Chen,

Your portfolio is generally good, but its a bit monotonous with too many finished renderings of projects.  It does not really show any serious analytical work by you. Unless you want to be a professional Renderer, I would cut down on some of those renderings.  Right now it more or less looks like a Rendering Shop's web site.  Also, did you do those renderings or were they done by the firms you worked at by others?  if you did not do them, more reason to take some out and replace with more intimate work of your own.  Also, graphically, I would encourage you to use more white space and generally put less !

I hope this helps.

Apr 5, 13 2:28 pm

Agreed. Show more process and diagrams of your ideas, and also more of the technical side in terms of plans/sections and models. It's really strange to see very flashy renderings of a project but no section. And it doesn't make sense to show so many images, let alone so many large images, of renderings that you didn't do - I'm not an expert on how much of other people's work you should include, but search the forum and make sure that you have a very good understand of the ethics of including that kind of work.

Apr 5, 13 5:15 pm

who are you making the portfolio for?  sure this could work for some employer in China.. Or grad school or some firm in America.  You use lots of projects and renderings from the work you've done in firms..  Many are just too flasy, looks like a bunch of  buildings, I don't know what I'm supposed to look at or what exactly is THE project.

Apr 5, 13 8:51 pm

Thanks for the swift comments guys, I actually was thinking the same thing about including more sketches and plans/sections and toning the renderings down. Some personal points that influenced the current portfolio:

1. Purpose: to gain employers attention by showcasing a wide range of projects (I have worked on numerous projects of different functions during different stages, of which, many I have had a significant contribution to the final outcome - which is hard when you are limited to about 20 pages)

2. Aesthetics: due a limiting time constraint (currently dealing with crazy overtime), its hard to incorporate plans/sections into the layouts super neatly.

Regarding sketches, we usually redo sketches into illustrator diagrams so alot of the original sketches are thrown out n lost. But I have been aware of this lately and scanning all my sketches on most of my projects in 2013 - so once Im legally allowed to add some of my current projects they will include a better variety of content.

Regarding rendering: all the renderings were done by professional rendering companies. I just wanted to point out that working with rendering companies in China is comparably different with western rendering companies... the whole process involves constant supervision where you have to check the model, sketch/photoshop/say amendments for every tiny detail in the rendering - for example you cant just say "this area is a park" - u literally have to draw in the trees, tell them how many, what type etc.

I just wanted to give some insight to my portfolio. I especially appreciate all your comments as the last 3 years working in China has shifted a lot of thinking and perception towards architecture. It is very refreshing to know that other architects around the world still care about substance of design rather than just pretty renderings. Much thanks!

Apr 6, 13 4:29 am

If i were an employer I would have no idea as to who you are as a designer, those renderings dont represent anything and they arent even done by you.

You stated your roles in each project which is good , but when you say things like " resolving podium plan , core etc. ". It's a big word to say , not sure if you realise.


Apr 6, 13 11:56 pm

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