Art Portfolios for applications?

<p>I'm going to be applying to mostly art colleges/institutes/universities this fall and am wondering how the portfolio process works. Does anyone understand how portfolio tests are given/how much time you have for them. The schools I am interested in include: F.I.T, Parsons New School for Design, Mass Art, RISD, Pratt and if you have any other suggestions!</p>

<p>Is any one else on the same boat as me on this? Or should I be freaking out? </p>

<p>Wisdom on such information is greatly appreciated!</p>

<p>I am not getting it clearly. Do you mean home assignment, like RISD's bike (sic) parsons challenge, cooper or FIT hometest?
or
portfolio review in general?
I am sure people actually applied to your list of school could give you the exact time frame to do home assignment ( I can do Cooper, if you want?) </p>

<p>If you are asking for portfolio in general, applying for this fall, you should have cooked up half decent final portfolio ready pieces already. just fine tune and get reviewed early - there will be NPD in fall but don't wait for it, go ahead and make appointment in person if you can travel and get personal review, then you still have time to edit to suit each schools you are interested in.
I do hear kids do pre-college port prep very last summer (now) and crank up enough pieces but these kids are usually academic-art kids with very high stats who weren't sure they wanted to do art school until their junior year, are you the one of them?</p>

<p>Well concerning application portfolios in general. I don't know much really about any of those you mentioned. I know that there are basic fine arts portfolios. But when applying to an art school what is is that you have to send portfolio wise? </p>

<p>and for the portfolio review what is that? is that just the sending of your portfolio for them to critic in final? I know that you can make appointments like that when you visit the schools but i'm not really sure exactly what it is that needs to get done before the application and what just gets sent with an application.</p>

<p>and yes i am doing a portfolio class this summer.</p>

<p>That's good, they should be able to help you during / end of the program.
Just don't assume your instructor got every application details right, time changes and so is requirements. I had many woops! moment with my kid's teachers, GCs, outside art instructors. They are so in it all through their lives and don't check details often especially if the school is their alma mater or in their turf (or so they believe)
ALWAYS check with school's current website, e-mail and ask if anything is not clear. </p>

<p>meanwhile, NPD is <a href="http://www.portfolioday.net/%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.portfolioday.net/&lt;/a>
2010 -11 schedule is <a href="http://www.portfolioday.net/content/view/104/53/%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.portfolioday.net/content/view/104/53/&lt;/a>
in case you've never been to one, it is like a trade show of art schools. All these participating schools would send in reviewers (admission people, regional reps, some mystery artists, alum) to the rotating host schools in the major cities per weekend each or so. You can get to meet many different school's reps at the same time in one place.
But it get really crowded and line is long, reviewers can be biased or not in the mood or whatever, it is not always helpful. Idea is to get some feedback and figure out where you are in whole pack of applicants so you could revise and built stronger portfolio.
If you are a senior, some schools would accept your portfolio on the spot. You'd still need to send in official application, maybe portfolio CD as well but if the school is far away and time or $ is tight, it is a great option to get one less thing you have to worry about.
However, if you could, you should make appointment to the faculty of your would be major or legit head admission people in the school and go visit yourself to get reviewed.
you'd get more time and detailed feedback. then you can edit, update where you have been told to work on ( more finished figure drawing or painting with colors or whatever-) that would increase your chance of acceptance and/or winning merit money.</p>

<p>^ none of these are must do-s by any means, you can simply follow school's requirement and send in CD, slide or actual pieces whichever how many pieces of work they asked, for the very first time along with the application. many internationals have no choice but to do that, so are the kids from remote places or limited means.
As long as you are following the schools' instruction and meet all requirements, payed fee, took tests and send in scores if you needed, done all paperwork, and know the program is good match to you, should be fine.</p>

<p>Thank you so much! I actually just heared about NPD and am very interested in it. Thank you so much for your input, I really do appreciate all of your time and help. :)</p>

<p>A portfolio review is showing the actual work, not reviewing your CD or slides with photos of the works.</p>

<p>Another thing to keep in mind is it's quality, not quantity. So if the application requires 12-20 pieces, you are better off with 12 good ones than 20 pieces of mixed quality. In some cases they will 'accept' your portfolio on the spot, but you still have to complete all the other application requirements (test scores, recs, forms, etc). They also may give you pointers on how to improve before sending in the completed application.</p>

<p>NPD is worthwhile, but be prepared to do lots of waiting, and again, bring the originals, not the CDs or slides (unless a piece is too large to travel with).</p>

<p>Thats great thank you for the advice,
I'm planning on going to a NPD but they aren't until the fall, do you know of anything that is earlier that can be used for portfolio review?</p>

<p>Also do you think they would review pictures of the pieces If the origionals are too big or cumbersome to bring along? </p>

<p>Also do you know if schools will review garments? I am interested in a fashion design major so do you think if I brought pieces of clothing that I made for the portfolio they might critique that? </p>

<p>Thanks again for all of your help and information! It really is great to know, and i really appreciate your time.
:)</p>

<p>I think it's ok to have photos of large items, and clothing should be fine if you designed it.</p>

<p>If you want to get some feedback before portfolio day, arrange for a portfolio review at a couple of colleges that aren't top choices. My daughter did 2 or 3 of those, just to get some input before she finalized the portfolio. It was helpful, and in her case, she didn't end up applying to any of those colleges, but did improve her portfolio and got some great feedback when she finally did NPD.</p>

<p>I'm not sure that original work is necessary anymore for portfolio review. My kid took a laptop with images to NPD and based on that had requests from various schools to apply, including Cooper. Times are changing. Based on that I would narrowing down 5 to 6 schools you definitely want to see (hard to do more than that on portfolio day), call the admissions office and ask them what they prefer to see on Portfolio Day (you might not have to lug original work) and then (very important) go at least 1-1/2 hours early, take a good book and a sketchbook and prepare to wait in line that long. If you go any later than that it can take you 5 hours just to get through the door. Go very early............if they open at 9 be there no later than 7:30am.</p>

<p>I think there is some confusion as to what a portfolio is and what a home test.</p>

<p>Portfolio is a collection of original artwork that you have done in the past year or so. It can consist of paintings, collage work, set designs for theater, computer images, costumer designs. Some classroom work is okay and probably unavoidable but a lot of schools also like to see some work that you've done outside of school settings. It shows that you are very interested and already capable of working outside of a classroom setting. So be sure and put in a few pieces that you've done that were not art class assignments. You will be asked to submit around 12 to 15 computer images (most schools prefer this to slides nowadays) but for portfolio day (NPD) or a review take a little more and don't self-select too much. Let the reviewer give you their take on your work and advice, you may find that something you hadn't even thought of is very interesting to a school (this happened to my child). Don't be shy at a review, speak up and don't shrink at constructive criticism or suggestions, it is not a rejection, most schools want to see that you are comfortable talking about your work and art in general.</p>

<p>So to sum up, a portfolio is a collection of 12 to 15 or so pieces of work that you have done in the past year or so presented usually as slides or on a CD as computer generated "slides"/images of the original pieces. </p>

<p>Home Test
In addition RISD, Cooper and a few others require a hometest. This is in addition to your portfolio. It usually involves creating original pieces based on suggestions for themes. I.e. RISD requires one drawing of a bike in any style. Usually 3 to 4 pieces are necessary, Cooper's is the most rigorous. Pay close attention to the instructions, many schools have size requirements and you must stick to them. However for example, with Cooper you might want to create something that can't be mailed (it must fit in the envelope they send and they are specific about hard edges, etc.) so you could photograph your sculpture and send the photo.</p>

<p>So for some schools you will just send in your portfolio and that can and usually will be the same portfolio for all applications.
In addition, some schools will require you to create a specific number of additional drawing just for that particular school. Do not try to send the same pieces to different schools, these must be created specifically to the particular school.</p>

<p>Also I've found that SAIC does the most helpful and informative portfolio presentation which really shows what most art schools mean when they request a portfolio. They show slides of portfolios from students they've accepted and why. I'm not sure how often they do these presentations, but it is really helpful to students who aren't sure what is needed. Also it is helpful to go to art sites on the internet where students who have applied to RISD, Cooper, etc. have posted their portfolios and images of their hometests and they'll often say heh I got in.....it gives you an idea of what they school is looking for. </p>

<p>Most schools by the way change their prompts year to year except for the RISD bicycle so don't try to get an early start, RISD's is posted pretty early on their web site but you can't second guess Cooper's. You won't know what the prompts are until they're mailed out.</p>

<p>Would there be portfolio classes that I could sign up for late in the summer? (Like say, right now...)</p>

<p>there may be. check out local colleges, art schools, etc.</p>

<p>Or you could just spend the summer doing some original pieces of work, as much as possible. There's no "set" look for a portfolio and basically you just need to do as many original pieces of art as possible, they don't need fancy frames or mounted on anything. If a piece is strong it's strong whether it's framed or not. The schools want to see what you can produce and also it gives them insight into your perspective.........don't worry about the presentation, just do strong art. Don't worry about fancy paper or expensive paints.......just do good strong work. Experiment, don't get too "tight", try a lot of things.</p>

<p>Check out the various schools' web sites and look at the galleries and see if they might even have posted some portfolio examples. Look at the gallery sections on current student work. You'll see many different styles and approaches. Get a lot of artwork done, that is the key. I don't really think a "class" on portfolio presentation is that helpful. Have a friend come over and show them your work and have them ask questions about it so you get used to discussing what you were thinking when you did one piece or the other (and make sure it's not a friend who will just say Wow that's great, you need someone who'll ask in depth questions). You need to be used to talking about your process and why you do something a certain way.</p>

<p>One other thing I forgot to mention in my post.......sketchbooks.......keep a sketchbook going, drawings and even writing about things, some schools actually ask for a sketchbook or two to be submitted (Cooper for example), so over the course of your junior/senior year and/or this summer keep working on sketchbooks........take it with you every day and fill in a few pages.</p>

<p>Just as a note: one of the strongest drawings I ever did was done on a piece of newspaper drawn over the type. You don't need fancy stuff, just do the artwork. Use color crayons if that's all you have, the point is to hone your skills and be creative and experiment.</p>

<p>thanks! those are all great tips, the sketch book idea. THANKS A LOT! </p>

<p>And there might still be time to sign up for a portfolio class at the Fashion .Institute .of Technology., they have summer workshops that start after their regular summer precollege classes. I would suggest looking them up, just google it and i'm sure you'll find something.</p>

<p>...I'd be careful about advising a digital presentation. Different critics will value different aspects of a piece- for instance, one may look for a high level of craft, while another considers concept more prevalent. You never know. So bringing original work is the safest bet. One must also consider the medium. Say, a video would be perfectly fine on a laptop- or even a slide show of installation art or performance. But a painting or drawing, now that is usually better experienced in person.</p>

<p>Get as many portfolio reviews as possible!!! nothing beats experiencing the real grill. Learn how to present/speak about your work and thoughts.</p>

<p>"I'd be careful about advising a digital presentation."</p>

<p>Which is why I recommended calling the different schools and asking them what they want to see. While it's fine to bring original work if pieces are quite large this can be almost impossible. It's true that a painting or drawing is usually better experienced in person but this can be quite difficult if you work large. </p>

<p>All I can say is that our personal experience was quite good using the laptop instead of lugging huge pieces to the portfolio presentation. But do call and if your pieces are large explain that, no school is going to expect you to bring large pieces to Portfolio Day but they sure would like to see someone's work who is painting on that scale.</p>

<p>Definitely the digital age has arrived with respect to portfolio reviews. My son has a lot of animation so stuff had to be on cd or flash drives to be shown, but almost all the schools will ask you to upload your art to a website or send files so start working on taking pictures now. My son built his own website and this was a big hit when he went to visit SAIC, CMU and WUSTL because he could send the link to an admissions officer or portfolio reviewer and they would provide comments and what he should include in his final submission.</p>

<p>GET YOUR PORTFOLIO PHOTOGRAPHED now....do it yourself or get help. Keep track of date of piece, media and dimensions. Have it all on your computer and make some backups. Do it before school starts. This was one of the hardest things for my son to get done during application time. Some schools had great websites to load your images or videos (MICA, SAIC, VCU) allowing you to add dimensions, media or title. Others allowed you to upload or send images on a cd but not video (WUSTL, RIT, UW Wisconsin). There are also portfolio requirements for institutional and outside scholarships. Many wanted specific naming conventions, little thumbnails or pages with titles, dimensions, number of bytes, etc. and they all varied in their requirements...some wanted a mixture of media, some demanded a number of still lifes/drawing from observation. Some were totally open. It was not fun putting them all together, but having the whole portfolio fotographed, dimensions and media noted, etc made it much, much easier. </p>

<p>The actual interviews and live portfolio reviews were rare and my impression was that these reviews were as much about selling the school to the applicant as the reverse. The portfolio submission as part of the application seemed to be far more important because it was reviewed in context of other applicants and used to determine merit aid.</p>

<p>bow wow pant pant grrrrr drip drop lick lick sniff snuff
fammom lives!!</p>

<p>such a tease, you should make famkid's site publicly available.
oxoxoxox</p>

<p>Also, make sure you bring your latest sketchbook to NPD or a portfolio review at schools. Some reviewers like to see your sketches and your thought process on how you got to the finished product.</p>