Putting Your Best Work Forward: How to Build A Portfolio for Art School – November 20, 2014

Do you love to make art? Are you trying to figure out how to put together a portfolio? Trying to decide which piece should go first or last? What exactly is a portfolio in the first place? Can you take pictures for your portfolio on a cellphone?

All of these are great questions that will be answered in a hands-on workshop lead by one of the Alberta College of Art + Design’s Admissions Officers, Katie Potapoff. Katie will guide you through what different portfolios can look like and the general purpose of a portfolio. If you are thinking about applying to an art school, she will answer the question; what are the most important things that an admissions office looks for in a portfolio?

A stumbling block for many people who are interested in applying to an art and design school is the inclusion of observational drawings in their portfolio. It may be a practice they are not confident in or something they have never tried, Katie will lead you through some easy, hands-on (so prepared to get a little messy), observational drawing exercises that you can take home and practice.

Presentation is a major part of the portfolio and how people will evaluate your artwork. What is the best way to photograph artwork? What kind of lighting and editing should you use in your photographs? Katie will explain the best ways of capturing your artwork. Many art and design school are using the online portal Slideroom for portfolio submissions, you will learn the ins and outs of this portal so that submitting portfolios is a breeze and she will even take you for a behind scenes look at what the portfolio reviewer sees when looking at your work.

A portfolio is also more than images; your words are an important part of the equation. How do you write an artist statement that doesn’t sound like everybody else? Katie will help you tap into who you are as an artist and create a statement that will express your artistic ideas and inspirations.

The skills and techniques that you will gain through this workshop will help you throughout your career. Every time you create a portfolio, whether it is for application to an art school or submitting a proposal to have an exhibition it is important to put your best work forward.

Presenter: Katie Potapoff

Katie Potapoff has a BFA in Visual Arts from the University of British Columbia Okanagan. Since graduating in 2008, Katie has worked within the sphere of arts education; whether its been educating the general public about contemporary art through leading gallery tours or writing Visitor Guides for public art exhibitions to collaborating on multimedia works that deal with youth issues, Katie is always passionate about connecting the viewer with the artists’ ideas and messages.

In addition, her three years of experience working with prospective students at the Alberta College of Art + Design, in her role as Admissions Officer, gives her plenty of knowledge from which to help young artists put their best foot forward in the form of their portfolios. Katie chooses to work in a collaborative manor with young emerging artists on how to best present themselves so that they can begin their artistic journey with confidence.

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