38 comments

  • Erik de K.Erik de K., almost 4 years ago

    Just want to say I'm slightly jealous that your domain is your actual full name. That's just awesome.

    14 points
  • Thomas Michael SemmlerThomas Michael Semmler, almost 4 years ago

    A little disappointed to see a Squarespace site to be honest. What exactly did you do on the site, besides copy? (I'm not trying to sound salty, I'm just confused what we should critique)

    One thing that I see very quickly, is that you seem to load Playfair Display, but you only use it for your logo. You could benefit greatly from typing your logo in illustrator or sketch, and export the outlines as SVG! Stylesheets that are linked in your header are blocking-references, meaning that the site will not render unless they are loaded.

    7 points
    • Account deleted almost 4 years ago

      Believe it or not I find it refreshing. For many designers - especially starting out (and UI/UX focused) - it's all about the work they've done. Anyone can make a wiz-bang site for themselves... I wanna see how they design for clients and bosses and real-world needs. Everything else is superflous.

      5 points
      • Mike Wilson, almost 4 years ago

        I look at it the opposite. Anyone can make a wiz-bang case study. You just insert gratuitous images of sketches/whiteboards/sticky notes (nobody will have the context to know if these were even relevant), use all the right UX buzzwords, talk about how you love sketch and slack, and then throw the final layouts in pretty mock-up templates. Without access to internal company data you have no idea if the project was an actual success. Nor do you know the true contribution of that person on the team.

        To me the only differentiation I see between candidates most of the time is the actual design of the portfolio itself. Anything else in somebody's portfolio was likely done on a team and their actual contribution is unknown (not that I'm suggesting Karen is lying, I'm speaking just in general). The portfolio design itself is the only thing you know for sure that the designer was actually involved in from 0 to 100.

        2 points
    • Karen Li, almost 4 years ago

      My perspective/reasoning behind using squarespace is essentially that Benjamin said -- I wanted to focus more on showcasing my work than on building my website. Another benefit that I saw to using squarespace was simply that it would be faster than me trying to code it all up (making this live took me less than a week). For my next iteration of my portfolio however, I'm most definitely thinking of coding it myself :) Also, good point about the logo thing, I'll fix that!

      0 points
      • Thomas Michael SemmlerThomas Michael Semmler, almost 4 years ago

        Yeah - that is well and fine! I am not saying that it isn't a good approach, caring more about the actual work. I hope you don't feel attacked or something, because it wasn't my intention.

        So what's left is just to congratulate you on your portfolio launch - because unlike me, you have one :P

        0 points
      • Account deleted almost 4 years ago

        Neither of us are right per say... a coin has two sides!

        All I can say is that I've seen so many young designer spend YEARS trying to come up with a great portfolio... and never just putting their work out there. To me that's silly.

        When I'm looking for new hires, a custom site might intrigue me, but it's not ultimately why I'm there. The value is in the work that's been done. Does THAT general aesthetic work for my needs? What kind of projects were they working on. As Thomas said, copy is kinda fluff... but the work isn't.

        A portfolio site is ultimately a picture frame. A picture frame helps complete a body of work, but ultimately people are interested in what's inside of it more. The Mona Lisa could be presented in a new frame every year... but people would still flock to see it... because it's the piece inside the frame they want to view.

        Good luck!

        0 points
  • Robert Deniszczyc, almost 4 years ago

    Really nice design - one recommendation I would say to improve it would be to recreate your resume rather than using an image. Using an image is bad for accessibility, performance, and SEO among others.

    5 points
    • Duncan RussellDuncan Russell, almost 4 years ago

      Yep! This is a weak point, and it's not readable on mobiles either.

      In terms of layout and typography I think it lets down the rest of the site, which is otherwise very clean and clear (good job there!).

      0 points
    • , almost 4 years ago

      gotcha! I felt that it looked weird as well, but I didn't know if it would be proper form to recreate it, so thank you for that validation!

      0 points
  • Adam Morgan, almost 4 years ago

    Remove "baby". You're a product designer. Own it.

    1 point
  • Netta MarshallNetta Marshall, almost 4 years ago

    Love the domain and main pic. Found a small display issue on the Tangibles page, though.

    Image alt

    1 point
  • Adam Kirkwood, almost 4 years ago (edited almost 4 years ago )

    Kudos:

    • Nice work on creating a better line measure for all your content. Definitely easier to consume the content now.
    • I appreciate the breadth and depth covered in your selected body of work
    • Great to see physical products your created or worked on

    Critiques:

    • Would be great to see a little more detail on the measurable impact your solution experiences delivered for your projects
    • I find it a little odd to display your resume within a page. Any reason why it just doesn't download instead?
    • It's a bit weird to click on your name in the top right to be taken back out to your landing page. It throws off what I would assume is a normal flow for a user browsing through a portfolio.

    Cheers.

    1 point
  • Peiran TanPeiran Tan, almost 4 years ago

    One thing you can quickly fix: measure is too long.

    1 point
    • , almost 4 years ago

      could you clarify what "measure" means?

      0 points
      • Robert Deniszczyc, almost 4 years ago

        Please correct me if I am mistaken but I think measure is the number of words per line?

        If I am wrong, then I feel it would be a good idea to reduce the number of words per line to between 9-15(at a push) words.

        1 point
      • Ricardo AliagaRicardo Aliaga, almost 4 years ago

        The optimal line length is usually between 50 and 75 characters

        1 point
        • Peiran TanPeiran Tan, almost 4 years ago

          75 still feels like a stretch unless you’re doing big format books. Bringhurst recommends 50 – 65 (or 8 to 12 words per line if that’s easier to count).

          0 points
          • Jimmy Young, almost 4 years ago (edited almost 4 years ago )

            I believe this is a Squarespace portfolio?(which is completely fine), but I don't think line length is adjustable.

            0 points
            • Adam Brace, almost 4 years ago

              If the line length isn't adjustable then make the font size/line height bigger. Squarespace will give control over that

              0 points
              • , almost 4 years ago

                the solution I'm using currently to fix it is adding "spacer" objects to the area surrounding the text, its working out pretty well. thanks everyone for the help and suggestions!

                1 point
  • Mark O'NeillMark O'Neill, almost 4 years ago

    The green illustrated mockup for the price curve case study looks out of place. You have used photography for everything else aside from that image.

    All content seems very wide.

    Finally, the layout of your CV is awkward for me - it would really benefit from some more careful spacing. The hyphens at the star of each line give the left side an awkward feel.

    0 points
  • Michel BioMichel Bio, almost 4 years ago

    It's clean, and perhaps a site you'd expect to see from a physical product designer.

    Try to be bold with your intro text. Make the text bigger. Split it between 2 columns. Right now it feels like reading a very long horizontal sentence.

    Also, who is your audience? We the designers probably aren't your audience. Think about what your value proposition is. What value you intend to bring your target group (potential clients)? Tailor that message to support the proposition value.

    Good luck!

    0 points
    • , almost 4 years ago

      I've made some edits to my intro, if you want to check out the changes, I'd love some more feedback!

      0 points
      • Michel BioMichel Bio, almost 4 years ago (edited almost 4 years ago )

        Hi Karen,

        Definitely better. It reads more naturally. One point of attention you could further work on: Try to focus attention on the viewer/potential client in your intro. So less 'Me' 'I' and more 'You' 'Your'.

        For example, instead of: I use human centered design principles to craft delightful experiences and innovative products.

        You could do: Getting your business (or product/service) the most delightful experiences and innovative products, using human centered design principles, is what drives me.

        Better: Formulate what 'value' you bring your client. Is 'delightful experiences' and 'innovative products' the value you're bringing?

        Again, good luck!

        0 points
  • Nathan LongNathan Long, almost 4 years ago

    It's nice, clean, concise. Well done! (This is SO much better than MY first portfolio!! LOL)

    I like that you go into detail about your process and thinking. Huge selling point. People visiting your site will be able to trust that you have solid design thinking and problem solving (which is what potential clients and companies will want to see, that they can trust you to Get Stuff Done™).

    One of the first things that jumped out to me was the use of the word 'baby' in your position statement. Baby who? Baby what? Your work doesn't look baby-ish to me! This is probably one of the first things people will read so its your chance to se the tone for their experience of your stuff.

    So maybe instead of 'baby' you could say 'junior'. You don't have to be sale-sy, just be real. Paul Jarvis (https://pjrvs.com/) and Nick Desabato (https://draft.nu/) do a really good job of very quickly getting everyone on board with who they are and what they do. I wouldn't go quite as extensive as they have, but look at their copy and how they've phrased things, how they set things up with what they've written.

    But overall, nice work!

    0 points
  • Todd SielingTodd Sieling, almost 4 years ago

    Lots to like here. The introductory copy on the home page needs work, though. On the first sentence I thought you designed just for infants, and I liked the clear expression of focus... then realized it didn't line up with the work on the page.

    The text in that area is super-important: people will use it to situate your work in the universe of possible designers. Answering questions like what you focus on, what's distinctive about your work or process, and even narrowing down the kinds of clients you work with, will all help.

    Last note: you ask visitors to check back for new work. The design of this site is so nice that it would look great in a newsletter, so why not offer one so you can show new work to previous visitors who might be interested, but might not know or remember to check back.

    0 points
    • , almost 4 years ago

      Working on improving my introductory copy right now! as for the newsletter idea, that's pretty awesome, I'll definitely be implementing that

      0 points
      • Todd SielingTodd Sieling, almost 4 years ago

        I'm glad it's well-received. After I posted I thought 'jeez maybe that was too harsh, I really do like how the site looks'. If you want eyes on the copy update I'm happy to look at it.

        0 points
        • , almost 4 years ago

          Thanks for the offer, Todd -- I've just updated the copy if you'd like to check it out

          0 points
          • Todd SielingTodd Sieling, almost 4 years ago

            Awesome update, that's great copy. And I signed up for your newsletter. Congrats on going live and getting it out there for feedback.

            0 points
  • Ian WilliamsIan Williams, almost 4 years ago

    Ditch the landing and beef up the intro section on your portfolio. You can still show your personality there, but making them work to get to know you is less than great.

    :)

    0 points
  • Lucas CobbLucas Cobb, almost 4 years ago

    Are you completely sure you can include the TrueCar items in your portfolio? I know you said you were an intern, but several / most companies do not allow inclusion of their proprietary / internal design projects in employee portfolios.

    I know the corporation I work for does not allow me to include their projects I build out in my professional portfolio.

    0 points