What do the most successful creative professionals do to get to the top of their field, achieve their career goals and secure their dream jobs or clients? A powerful, compelling portfolio built from a sound strategic approach using proven tools and techniques is the single most important ally you can have. Award-winning Creative Director and Trainer Dale Cody, pulls back the curtain and shares all the secrets he has learned from more than 16 years hiring and working with some of the most successful creatives and companies on the planet. In addition to more than 20 video modules outlining strategy and tactics, Dale will walk you through a step-by-step mini-course for building a complete WordPress portfolio site. You’ll hear first-hand from top recruiters what they’re looking for in successful candidates and their portfolios. You’ll learn what works and why.
Master Proven Strategies, Secrets and Techniques to Not Only Build a Killer Portfolio, but Totally Crush the Interview Process and Build Your Professional Brand
Master Key Skills That Pros Use to Secure the Best Jobs and Clients
If you’ve ever wondered how so many successful creative professionals just seem to have stratospheric career trajectories even though their work may not be any better than the competition, then this course is for you. Even if you’re experienced professional with strong samples, there are still loads of things you can do to strengthen your portfolio and improve presentation, gain competitive advantage and propel your career skyward like a rocket. The hard truth for those just out of school is that your newly minted diploma and work samples are only the first step on the path to your dream job. To a Hiring Manager, they only act as an initial filter. In order to get their attention and distinguish yourself in a very competitive job market, you need a lot more. You need to understand how these people think, what they’re looking for and then convince them that you are the very best person to solve their problems. You need to convince them that you speak their language and are invaluable to their own success. This course will give you the skills to create a show-stopping killer portfolio and secure your dream job or clients.
Contents and Overview
We’ll begin by examining your target audience and by that, I mean those individuals who make real hiring decisions for the roles you want. I’ll pull back the curtain and share all the secrets, tips and techniques I’ve seen used over the years by the most successful creative professionals out there. Even if you’re not in a field where having a portfolio is common practice, you’ll find career gold here.
You’ll learn how techniques taught in Business School such as SWOT Analysis can help you excel in the competitive career marketplace. I’ll show you how to think of, and present yourself as a cohesive brand in order to differentiate yourself from everyone else and dominate your own career niche. Through a powerful portfolio and market savvy approach, you’ll be able to craft a professional presence that top companies and Hiring Managers will practically trip over themselves to engage with. I’ll show you what content to include, what not to include, and how to display your work in the most effective ways and places possible.
You will know how to find the perfect intersection that combines the kind of work you’re most passionate about with the unique skills and gifts that make you a superstar, along with the lucrative market opportunities that will pay you best. You will learn how narrative storytelling structure can combine with proven business techniques such as SAR and Case Studies to shine the golden light of ability, accomplishment and proof all over you. I’ll introduce you to your new best friends and collaborators in finding and using that proof too. By the end of Section 5, you have a complete playbook for building your killer portfolio site including web hosting, site architecture, navigation and a precise script for which samples to include in what order.
Finally, you will learn how to build a complete WordPress portfolio website step-by-step and end-to-end. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a complete newbie or a seasoned veteran. This is basically a full course within a course and by the end; you’ll be able to confidently build your own site. You’ll get tons of additional bonus material for helping you understand and refine your brand as well as resource links and assignments to assist in cementing concepts.
Anyone in a career where showing visual, written, audio, or multimedia samples of your work will help get you the job. Traditionally, these have been in well-known fields such as graphic design illustration and photography, but increasingly they have been extremely effective differentiators in other areas such as Landscape Architect, Interior Designer, Copywriter, Social Media Marketer, Furniture Designer, Web Developer and many others.
Access to a computer and the Internet are really all you’ll need, but some image editing (i.e. Photoshop, Gimp or Illustrator etc.) and front-end web coding skills would be a big benefit.
What Am I Going to Get From this Course?
Discover how top creative professionals use a powerful portfolio and proven techniques to achieve their career goals and secure their dream jobs.
In this module, we'll cover just a few of the many empowering things you'll be able to do after completing this course. These include knowing what work to put into your portfolio and where for maximum impact. You'll be able to employ the same powerful techniques they teach in Business School such as SAR, SWOT and Case Studies. You'll be able to choose the best online platforms for showcasing your work and I'll teach you how to build a complete portfolio website using WordPress.
Go behind the scenes to learn what Hiring Managers are looking for and what it takes to get their attention
Go behind the scenes as I pull back the curtain to reveal all the secrets, tips and tricks I learned hiring numerous top creative professionals during more than 16 years working with dozens of Fortune 500 clients. I share those things that successful job seekers do to catch and keep my attention.
Every Creative Director and Hiring Manager have also been a job-seeking candidate at least once in their career. I am no exception. I have learned valuable lessons at each step along the road and usually the hard way. In this module, I pass what I've learned and those metaphorical savings on to you.
In this module, we examine the complementary roles that conceptual thinking or problem-solving abilities will play against craft, or technical skills in putting together your killer portfolio. Both are important, but their weight will vary greatly depending on the job itself and your skills, desires and strengths.
This is something they teach in every Business School and something most companies perform on a regular basis. It's an important part of your strategic dream job toolkit. Besides which, you'll find it a fun and enlightening exercise.
What are you most passionate about doing professionally? What gifts or skills do you have that set you apart and make you a superstar? When you combine these with opportunities that pay well and provide value for others, then you'll truly have found your bliss, dharma, ikigai or sweet spot.
Learn to think of yourself as a unique brand in order to distinguish yourself and stand out from the field. By understanding and leveraging your own unique authentic qualities with consistent, cohesive brand messaging, you'll be able to demonstrate your true value to employers and clients.
In this module, you'll learn how to identify and own your unique career niche regardless of whether you're a specialist or generalist. When Hiring Managers or potential clients are in the market for someone with your skill-set, you want them to think of you first and foremost. Here's how to do it.
In this module, you'll learn which samples to include in your professional portfolio and why. Just as critically, you'll learn which examples not to include and for what reasons. Making smart strategic decisions here will vastly improve your immediate job prospects as well as long-term career satisfaction
Creative Directors and Hiring Managers strongly prefer to see actual work samples rather than student work, even if the finished quality is not as high. These demonstrate more clearly how well you perform against deadlines and stress, as well as your teamwork and reliability etc. I'll show you some great places to get these samples fast and easy.
Human beings connect better with stories than almost any other form of communication. I will show you how to harness the power of narrative structure that underpins virtually every movie, novel or even great TV ad ever made in order to supercharge your portfolio and job interview skills.
In this module, you'll learn how to combine the powerful SAR framework with storytelling structure to create Case Studies that just crush it. You'll be able to connect with companies and Hiring Managers by furnishing compelling problem-solving examples backed up by irrefutable proof of performance - all in the language of business that they understand.
In this module, we'll follow up by deconstructing and discussing some real world examples of Case Studies. We'll examine how they can be re-purposed for various media and delivery methods while retaining consistent content and brand messaging.
Testimonials and recommendations are like powerful little sales agents working on your behalf 24/7. They help provide social proof that you can deliver as promised and are a solid team player. I'll show you how to get great ones as well as the most effective places to display them.
We compare and contrast the roles that range and depth play in designing your optimal portfolio. By understanding how each one affects perception of you as a candidate, your skills and your marketability, you can steer the job conversation in your favor.
In this lecture, we'll go over the question of style and the role it plays in your professional career. I'll share tips and thoughts about developing and evolving yours.
It's important not only that you take proper credit for your work, but also that you give others on your team the credit they are due. How and where you accomplish this is relatively simple, but critically important to get right. Doing so will also boost your overall credibility. I'll share ideas and best practices for both taking and giving credit.
In this module, we'll go over some of my favorite options for putting your portfolio online. We'll discuss costs, technical considerations and other factors for setting up and maintaining your online portfolio. I'll give you recipes for securing the best, most effective domain names along with how to buy and secure them. We'll talk about responsive design, themes and plug-ins as well as paid drag and drop site building tools.
This video covers ideas and best practices for structuring your portfolio website including navigation and other design considerations.
In this lecture, I walk you through a sample script suggestion and explain my thinking around impact, prioritization and narrative. Every portfolio is going to be unique, but here you'll be able to make measured, calculated and effective choices based on the material we've covered in this course.
In this introduction to the WordPress Portfolio Site step-by-step mini-course, you'll be able to see what the end product we're building looks like and I'll explain some of the major elements and skills that you'll learn along the way. This part of the series is a hands-on video screen-cast demonstration.
We cover various aspects of choosing and securing your domain name as well as finding a great place to host your new portfolio website
In this module you'll learn how quick and easy it is to install WordPress on your site using simple tools that most web hosting companies provide for free.
In this module, I'll show you how to research great themes that inspire you and you'll learn how to jump-start your site design with existing free, or paid premium themes. No coding necessary...
You'll discover how easy it is to install and begin customizing your first WordPress theme. We'll also begin the process of branding & customization by adding and styling a logo on your site
In this lesson, we'll take you from the introduction to the process of creating pages, menus and site navigation
You'll learn how to create and populate a Blog Page as well as how to define a Home Page and continue building out site navigation and menus
In this multi-part series, I begin walking you through the process of creating your first animated image carousel including text messaging. We'll begin by adding assets into our image library and progress through styling the first slide.
Part 2 of this 4 part detailed tutorial on how to create animated slider carousels using a common, but powerful WordPress plug-in
Third part building an image and text slide carousel for your portfolio site
In this module, we'll complete the process of making our first image carousel ready to be placed on the page
In this lesson, we'll build our first content rich page and begin by adding the image carousel we just built
In part 2, we begin styling page elements through understanding and manipulating rows, padding, margins and other methods
You'll learn to add a flexible, feature rich Footer across all pages.
You'll learn the basics of designing and building sidebars which can be placed on all, or individual select pages
In Part One of this two part module, you will learn how to create an effective, visually appealing Contact Page, so that prospective clients, employers and others can connect with you quickly and easily using multiple methods.
In this module, you'll learn how to build a robust, attractive and functional Contact Page
In this first of three parts, we'll begin designing and constructing our Home Page by reinforcing some of the skills we've previously learned while adding plenty of new ones
As we continue fleshing out the Home Page, I show you how to add and style icon boxes and create parallax effects for enhanced visual appeal
You'll learn how to add and style client testimonials as well as animate columns and content on this third part of building your Home Page
In this module we'll begin building our first Portfolio Page and set the stage for creating more complex components such as the Case Studies
In this lesson, we'll take a slightly deeper dive and begin working with basic HTML and Short Codes. You'll see how easy it is to understand and then use that knowledge to customize your site through just a few simple lines of code
You'll be able to do a lot more customizing of your portfolio and case studies as we learn how easy and powerful it is to manipulate simple built-in Short-Codes and basic HTML
In this final module on building your portfolio and case studies, you'll learn about a few common mistakes or "gotcha's" and how to easily avoid them. We'll talk about finishing touches and the importance of continuing to refine our presentation.
Congratulations!! You've completed the WordPress mini-course as well as this training series. In this module we summarize some of things you've learned and how they empower you to create and customize your own unique portfolio for getting your dream job!
Two top recruiters graciously took time from their busy schedules so I could interview them for this series. They handle both full-time staffed and contract design opportunities at one of the most successful creative placement agencies on the west coast. Tons of great information and insights here!
A Short Bio
Throughout a successful career in advertising and high tech as an award-winning Creative Director, I have provided high-profile solutions for dozens of global Fortune 500 companies. I have also continued to teach and mentor students from around the world as adjunct faculty, online, and as the first Visual Communications Dept. Chair with the International Academy of Design and Technology in Seattle, WA. I am totally passionate about empowering and inspiring others to achieve their potential and live their passion through learning. I have an MBA in Information Technology as well as two design degrees, including a BFA from the renowned Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA.
As a published Author, Illustrator and Photographer, my work has appeared in print, online, broadcast and as stock for many well-known publications and organizations. I also love adventure travel and have visited more than 33 countries thus far with more in the planning stages. Aside from teaching, various creative and business endeavors, I love to rock climb, practice yoga, scuba dive and stay fit.
What do you want to learn?