7 Replies Latest reply on Apr 25, 2018 1:31 PM by norman.sanders

    Portfolio Ideas?

    Rayven Wolfe

      I need to come up with a project to add to my portfolio for my capstone class in college. I've decided it needs to be a Photoshop project since that is my weakest area. I am looking for some ideas for project ideas that would offer a nice "wow" factor in my portfolio. Here are a few of my guidelines:


      • The project needs to be able to be printed in the final output. This is a physical portfolio, not a digital one.
      • The project can take several weeks to complete, but this is not my only class, so something that is about 40-60 hours of work would be ideal.
      • I struggled with projects that limited us to only using imported textures for the entire composition.
      • I struggled with layer masks. I know what they are. I did use them with some success in a few projects. But I can't wrap my head around fitting them properly into a workflow (when to use them and when something else is a better solution).
      • I am absolutely done with photo restoration. I spent half a semester putting pictures back together and fixing colors, I'm outright sick of it.
      • The project can include other Adobe products, but it needs to be done primarily in Photoshop.


      I list the struggles, not to limit what I should do, but to offer a better idea of my skill level and where I need to improve. I would prefer projects that allow me to improve my weak areas, but I'm no expert in the areas I listed above so I can't do something so completely novel and zany in those particular areas.


      I have the CS6 version of the software.


      Thank you in advance for any ideas you can offer.

        • 1. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
          Curt Y Level 7

          If looking for something new you might check out painting.  There are a number of tutorials on YouTube and other places.

          • 2. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
            Silkrooster Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            Ok, why not take advantage of your limits and try to expand on them, as they are important.



            Pick a person, place or thing and do a composition of them/it.


            Create a texture for the background, use masks to place images.


            a project like this can show your creativity for use of a camera, photoshop and texturing skills.


            Because a single person composition could be knocked out in a few days depending on skill level, you may want to do a group of people, a town, a shelter, a church, hospital, local 4H group, your class, etc. This would allow you to have mulitple images showing a story that you are trying to tell. Keep that in mind, when someone can visually see a story the whole composion starts to pop.

            Good luck and have fun.

            • 3. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
              Rayven Wolfe Level 1

              Thank you for your reply, Curt. I've done several pieces of digital painting over the span of a couple semesters and I think it will be part of whatever final project I choose.

              • 4. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
                Rayven Wolfe Level 1

                Thank you for your reply, Silkrooster.


                We did do several compositing mini-projects along the way so I can probably pull off something like this. Thanks for your input!

                • 5. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
                  norman.sanders Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                  Rayven, the key to an open-ended project such as this -- to demonstrate your mastery of camera and Photoshop -- is to choose a subject matter that would interest everyone in class (and the Prof) and be produced in a manner that is unexpected.


                  With those criteria, consider a contemporary portrait (not Yearbook stuff...a demonstration of lighting) and also an on-site portrait (a demonstration of versatility) of each person in your Photoshop class…all in black & white. That’s right: no color. And by on-site I mean off-campus personal environment portrait. With 15 in class, that adds up to thirty prints.


                  It would interest everyone in the group (people love to look at people, especially images of themselves), and artful handing of black & white will, compared to the work of the other students, be unusual. Artful black & white needs Photoshop to enhance each image...and it puts color to shame.

                  Good luck.

                  1 person found this helpful
                  • 6. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
                    davescm Adobe Community Professional

                    Great advice to anyone coming across the thread Norman.  I hope the OP got his/her portfolio completed though - it was back in 2013



                    • 7. Re: Portfolio Ideas?
                      norman.sanders Adobe Community Professional & MVP