Photography Portfolios – In Print and Online Guidelines

Deciding how and what to put in your print portfolio is always a perplexing and subjective process. Here are a few general guidelines to help you get your print portfolio started:

1) Choose your most consistent body of work that demonstrates your point of view in a cohesive manner. 

2) Consider no more than 10-20 images. This may require editing down some of your work. 

3) Choose your materials.  You can order (or purchase at Blick) screw-post type portfolios which require you to print your own work, and insert it into the screw-post book.  You can also print your own and custom-bind it.


There are many types of papers available to print with. The Digital Lab has sample books, you can also order sample packs online.  The most popular papers are Moab, Hahnemuhle, and Red River in matte or satin finish.  See this post for more detail. 

4) Print a cover page with your logo/brand identity, as well as an end page that has your contact information.  The interior of the book is the 10-20 images you’ve carefully selected.  Rule of thumb is always Quality over Quantity. If you  have 10 images that you love & 5 that are not as strong, leave those 5 out.


What I like about this portfolio is it shows a variety of layout options: full bleed, two-thirds of the page, single page, double page, etc.  It is however, too long. Keep in mind that at most reviews & Portfolio Day itself, you will most likely have 10-15 minutes to make your impression.

This portfolio shows single images as well as paired images & is consistent in genre. Your portfolio does not need contact information on every page.  Just the back page is fine. 



There are many options for choosing a template-based web platform for showing your work. Both Squarespace & Photoshelter have some great Getting Started videos. We also like Virb, Yola, aphotofolio, hasaportfolio, and a few other you can find here.