A position on the dev team in my program at Boise State University opened up recently. I thought it looked interesting and had a friend who said I should go for it. I went to apply and saw they required a link to your portfolio. Well, at this point, I didn’t have a portfolio.
So, I built one.
I wasn’t super excited when I got started, after all, why should I spend the time building one when I can just link them to a couple of my projects? Needless to say, my view on it now is much different.
I quickly threw together a list of my biggest projects: T1, Retro, and the blog posts. Then I remembered a game I made for a game jam and another that I recently finished for a school project. So I threw those in too. Then I remembered some songs I had made for an audio production class I’m taking, so I uploaded those to YouTube and added them to the portfolio.
But this wasn’t all of the music I had made, I also had some that I made just for fun, one that I wrote for a friend’s birthday, one that I remixed, and even a weird experimental noise music one I had made inspired by Chad Mossholder.
I added those too and noticed I had just added nine songs. I know there are songs somewhere on my hard drive I’ve forgotten and some others that have been lost. The thing is, I had completely forgotten about some of these songs!
I looked back at this chaotic page I had just created. When I first started working on it, I didn’t expect to have enough stuff to show off that it would require me to organize it by the type of thing I made.
My plan was originally just to throw the portfolio together and link it so I could apply for this job. I expected it to take me maybe 15 minutes and I’d be done. Before I knew it, I had just spent two hours combing through my hard drive, Google Drive, YouTube, and even the YouTube account for the city I used to make videos for (I ended up not including these, as I felt they didn’t represent my work well).
I knew I had finished a lot of various projects but having them all in one place brought this slow trickle of dopamine I can’t quite describe. I really wanted to find or make more things to show off.
Now, looking at my portfolio is a really good source of inspiration for me. When I look at what I added to the portfolio, I feel encouraged to make more to make the list even longer.
So if you’re struggling to find inspiration or encouragement to work on your projects, I encourage you to update your portfolio or build one from scratch. When you look back at everything you’ve done, you may feel a similar rush of inspiration and encouragement.