One of the great things about design portfolios is the variety. Take 5 successful artists and you’ll probably have 5 radically different design portfolios.
But that same “anything goes” approach can be a struggle if you’re a graphic designer, an illustrator or a web designer looking to create your own portfolio website to reach potential clients. And that might have you searching around for some quality design portfolios examples.
The following portfolios are not only good-looking and creative; they are owned by people who made the breakthrough in this huge worldwide design/illustration market and got their names tied to important clients and known brands along the way. That is, these are the design portfolios of successful artists.
We did a lot of research on this because we really wanted to present you some of the best design portfolios available on the web at this very moment. No matter if you need inspiration on how to make your own portfolio website, making an effort to improve your portfolio and make it rank better, or you’re simply looking for interesting designers to hire, we hope this post brings on the value you’re seeking.
So, let’s dive into the beauty that these talented designers provide to the world. Today, we have 20+ examples for you.
20+ stunning design portfolios to inspire your own!
Pawel’s design portfolio features a nice full-screen design with masonry portfolio elements, all showcased on a clean, white background. The first thing you’ll see here is the full-screen static header, which represents one of the artist’s works, followed by the portfolio as you scroll down. Pawel’s projects consist of leaking polish-like colors that give birth to various forms, logos, objects, and even humans. In short, all his designs are re-created in a watercolor style. The site is dominated by collections of large visual elements, and his works give you the impression of depth.
Yagi is a designer experienced in operating corporate websites for more than a dozen companies. His portfolio website is very clean, interactive – it takes you from section to section using smooth animations, and does a good job highlighting the projects.
Here we have a “designer in SF, specializing in 3D interaction”. Sounds exciting! Danny’s website is minimalist, though, with a clean background and a grid portfolio split into three columns. The simple approach, together with the magazine-like typography and the large headers from every page, is what makes Danny Jones’ project showcase interesting. Of course, his works are indeed stunning. You should have a look.
If you are wondering how it would be when web design meets contemporary art, then here’s your answer. The neo-conceptual artist Wim Delvoye has poured his portfolio onto a city map. You can explore the wim-city by clicking on different buildings like foundry, gothic works, and twisted to see a particular artwork. The most famous work of this international artist is the cloaca project. This full-page portfolio is both creative and straightforward. There’s no custom interaction like hover effect or anything, yet it still manages to stand out.
If you like weird and bizarre illustrations, Stefano’s works fit at the meeting point between grotesque and “wow, this guy has such an imagination”. The design of the website is minimalist because the artwork speaks for itself. When you enter Stefano Colferai’s site, you’ll see an upright menu with an animated logo on the left and a grid gallery in the right part of the screen. Nothing fancy, and still it gets your attention quickly. All his materials are playful, comic, “armed with irony and plasticine”.
This one has more of a different design approach, with the artist’s gif-ed picture on the homepage and various effects in the background (aka the cursor shows you pieces of information about the author when you hover randomly). After you stare a while at the homepage amazed by what you see, you’ll notice how the portfolio showcase is not ordinary either. It has nice overlay arrangements that combine beautiful animations. Once clicked, they show up in classy full-screen slideshows. If you like unique design portfolios, this is a great example for you.
Paula Rusu likes the zigzags, as she showcases her works in a zigzag-like layout – one right and one left below. Her backgrounds mix white and light grey tones, and she uses a boxed featured slider above the fold. Her work consists of happy, colorful drawings and illustrations that make the clean backgrounds of the site look alive.
This is an example of an organized and yet creative mind. On top of the clean and neat background, the large portfolio items follow a pattern: two vertical portfolio items in two columns (one next to another), followed below by a horizontal image (landscape style). And so it goes until you reach the bottom of the page. For the Illustration panel, Lotta chose to showcase her drawings in a grid fashion. The simplicity of this portfolio is the reason why it is so beautiful.
ToyFight is an entirely playful website; wherever you click or scroll, something happens. Apart from the parallax and fully animated Intro that offers you a quick tour around the designers’ works, the rest of the sections are also very spectacular, full of moving and colorful elements. Everything about ToyFight is so dynamic, you should see for yourself if you don’t want to miss a unique portfolio presentation.
Verena Michelitsch shows us the true definition of large elements on her website. It has two pages: the homepage (which is the actual portfolio) and an About section. The homepage displays non-clickable portfolio elements all over the place, in full-screen mode. From right to left, to up and down, the large visuals occupy the entire screen. They’re basically showcased at their original, official size. In contrast with the visually overwhelming homepage presentation, the About section (Info in this case) looks like a magazine’s credits page – a straight author bio, works, and resume references.
Steven Bonner from Glasgow showcases his landscape-like works in a full-screen, one-below-another style. Apart from Steven’s web-based designs, he also creates concepts for physical products (such as beverage paper tags, billboards, sweets wraps etc). The other page on Steven’s site is, again, a minimalist and economical Information page.
Tim Lahan uses the masonry style and lets his works speak for themselves. It’s a minimalist design and layout, filled with joyful and colorful drawings that will keep you busy while scrolling. Our artist here is not only a designer and illustrator but also a painter, who enjoys decorating interiors with hand-made materials of his own. Furthermore, Lahan designed several covers for books, which you can find listed on the site.
Unlike the artists we featured up to this point, Rakesh designs mobile and web interfaces, including branding and logo concepts. His website’s visual architecture is proof of his good taste in web design. His works beautifully overlay with transparent pieces of text that complement the appearance of the site (together with the catchy color scheme). Actually, Rakesh’s style is unique, which makes it hard to describe. So why don’t you just check it out yourself? Apart from the final versions of his projects, he also showcases intermediate stages via interesting hand-drawn sketches.
Momkai is a design agency from The Netherlands that uses a nice half-half homepage style. One half has the projects one below another, while the other half displays project names and contains the menu of the website. When you click on a specific project, it widens until it goes full-screen in a special, animated way. Actually, the animation is what defines Momkai; most of their elements are animated, including the illustrations. This is one of those design portfolios that’s really fun to browse.
Back to 3D land, where Elias from Stockholm introduces his website via a full-screen video header presenting a few samples of his work. When you visit his portfolio, you are treated to a two-column item showcase including both finished projects for clients AND fragments from the experiments he conducted over the years. When you click on the categories, you can see a list of a clean layout containing the images of the projects he worked on so far.
Similar to Steven Bonner’s portfolio, Taylor uses the same style of design and layout, only with clickable items and elegant hovering effects, which lead to a fancy magazine-like product showcase. The About page looks somehow like a footer, where you can find a nice and short author bio. If you want to see more of Taylor’s designs, check the Archive section for extra design concepts.
Cristian has an interesting project showcase, presenting a vertical slideshow, with each item covering the whole screen size. Basically, each image has the role of a slide – when you scroll, a new one takes its turn, and so on. The website is entirely full-screen; it contains mostly multimedia and shows as little text as possible. Cristian Garcia has both static and animated arts, most of them looking like they were made of plastic or synthetic materials. Overall, everything looks colorful, 3D, and high-def.
This time, we have two authors who put up a modern website for their complementary design portfolios, choosing a classy masonry gallery combined with beautiful effects for their high-quality designs and illustrations. From commercials to realistic and fictional ideas, Adrian and Gidi seem to do a great job together, with their projects looking like a mashup between real objects and cartoons (the frontier is thin here). A nice parallax scrolling accompanies the elegant product showcase.
Violeta from Barcelona is yet another illustrator who likes things simple and who speaks through her work. When you go to the site, a joyful and happy cartoon with floating elements welcomes you, followed by another happy boxed slider and a masonry gallery of colors and funny stories resembling crayon drawings. Once you enter this site, you get a happy vibe and meet the designer’s signature quickly. A simple bi-colored About page puts you up to speed with the author’s achievements, contact details, and bio. If you want to buy the printed versions of her projects, you can order them via the store section, which is a good example of how to integrate design portfolios with eCommerce functionality.
Stephanie keeps things simple as well. The above-the-fold page is a full-screen white background with the author’s name centered, leading to a visually contrasting About section that contains her sketches and working samples. The below-the-fold part of the homepage showcases Stephanie’s portfolio in a grid gallery. A nice pre-loader icon makes the transition between pages sweeter.
Shelby has, again, a simple website; but simple in her own way. Once you enter the homepage, you see two columns: one with text reading the names of the projects she had so far, while the other one is showing the covers associated with each of the project titles. The items open up in new pages where all the works are displayed via horizontal scrolling – you need to drag them right and left by the mouse. Actually, you can watch all the illustrations in the same horizontal slideshow if you keep clicking Next at the end of each category.And that’s it! Did you particularly like any of these design portfolios? If so, we would love to know what you enjoyed! Also, we’re open to new suggestions. So, if you have other great design portfolios in mind, let us know. We want more!
Don’t forget to join our crash course on speeding up your WordPress site. With some simple fixes, you can reduce your loading time by even 50-80%: