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thisnameislame

Looking for feedback on my portfolio website

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So I've been job hunting for a couple of months now, without much success so far.  I'd be interested to know if there's anything I could improve on with my website or resume that would help my chances of getting an interview.  Here's the link: http://jbagamedev.wix.com/portfolio.  Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

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I'm not a designer, but to me the site looks old or boring, the colors and the font makes me remember sites from the 90's.

 

For the colors, I'd change the background to white, and add some background color to the headings and subheadings only.

 

The buttons on the top may look better with some more style added to the font, at least with the text in bold they'll look more like buttons.

 

Also, you have a bug in the "contact" button on the hover state, it expands a little to the right.

 

The "projects" page looks empty, you can add a really short description for each project (a sentense or two) below the game's title.

 

The "contact" page also looks empty, maybe you can have the contact information always visible in the footer or in the right corner of the top bar and get rid of it. And maybe you can use 2 icons instead of the whole addresses (a letter icon for the email and a LinkedIn icon for the LinkedIn profile).

Edited by DiegoSLTS

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So I've been job hunting for a couple of months now, without much success so far.


1. So where do you live? [edit: Southern California - good. Is that L.A., San Diego, O.C.?]
2. Where are the companies you've applied to?
3. How much experience do you have in the game industry? [edit: recent grad, some indie - IOW, "not much"]

[Edit - so the key question is #2]
[Edit2 - looked closer. You're in Monrovia. That's kinda far from the majority of companies in SoCal] Edited by Tom Sloper
followed the link

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I'm not a designer, but to me the site looks old or boring, the colors and the font makes me remember sites from the 90's.

 

For the colors, I'd change the background to white, and add some background color to the headings and subheadings only.

 

The buttons on the top may look better with some more style added to the font, at least with the text in bold they'll look more like buttons.

 

Also, you have a bug in the "contact" button on the hover state, it expands a little to the right.

 

The "projects" page looks empty, you can add a really short description for each project (a sentense or two) below the game's title.

 

The "contact" page also looks empty, maybe you can have the contact information always visible in the footer or in the right corner of the top bar and get rid of it. And maybe you can use 2 icons instead of the whole addresses (a letter icon for the email and a LinkedIn icon for the LinkedIn profile).

 

 

Thanks for your suggestions.  I made some changes to the design.  I'm not seeing the bug you described with the contact button when I go to the site so I'm not sure about that, and I haven't decided yet if I want to get rid of the page like you said or find another way to make it look less empty.

 

 

So I've been job hunting for a couple of months now, without much success so far.


1. So where do you live? [edit: Southern California - good. Is that L.A., San Diego, O.C.?]
2. Where are the companies you've applied to?
3. How much experience do you have in the game industry? [edit: recent grad, some indie - IOW, "not much"]

[Edit - so the key question is #2]
[Edit2 - looked closer. You're in Monrovia. That's kinda far from the majority of companies in SoCal]

 

 

I've applied to a bunch of companies with listings for positions I feel qualified for: Obsidian, Wayforward, Naughty Dog, Infinity Ward, Giant Sparrow, and Collision Studios to name some examples.  I know Monrovia isn't super close to any big studios but the commute would be far from impossible and I'd be more than willing to relocate if I settled into something.  I wouldn't want to move preemptively since I'm sort of in between the LA and Orange County studios and don't know where I may end up.

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1. I've applied to a bunch of companies with listings for positions I feel qualified for:
2. Obsidian, Wayforward, Naughty Dog, Infinity Ward, Giant Sparrow, and Collision Studios to name some examples.
3. I know Monrovia isn't super close to any big studios but the commute would be far from impossible and I'd be more than willing to relocate if I settled into something. I wouldn't want to move preemptively since I'm sort of in between the LA and Orange County studios and don't know where I may end up.


1. You may "feel qualified" for those openings, but is that how the hirers see it?
2. You're naming well-known names. You need to be applying to lesser-knowns too (that's probably where you'll need to get your start).
3. It's over 39 miles to Naughty Dog and Infinity Ward from where you live - mind you, that's in Los Angeles traffic! If traffic is anywhere near normal, that's a one-hour commute, twice a day. Wayforward is over 40 miles from you. You may not think those distances are a problem, but hirers do. Preemptively moving is a risk you may have to take.
4. "A couple of months" is nothing in this job market. Hopefully you are continuing to build your portfolio while you do this. Also, you should be networking. And of course, the networking is all closer into town -- IGDA LA monthly events, WIGI monthly mixer in Santa Monica, etc.

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1. I've applied to a bunch of companies with listings for positions I feel qualified for:
2. Obsidian, Wayforward, Naughty Dog, Infinity Ward, Giant Sparrow, and Collision Studios to name some examples.
3. I know Monrovia isn't super close to any big studios but the commute would be far from impossible and I'd be more than willing to relocate if I settled into something. I wouldn't want to move preemptively since I'm sort of in between the LA and Orange County studios and don't know where I may end up.


1. You may "feel qualified" for those openings, but is that how the hirers see it?
2. You're naming well-known names. You need to be applying to lesser-knowns too (that's probably where you'll need to get your start).
3. It's over 39 miles to Naughty Dog and Infinity Ward from where you live - mind you, that's in Los Angeles traffic! If traffic is anywhere near normal, that's a one-hour commute, twice a day. Wayforward is over 40 miles from you. You may not think those distances are a problem, but hirers do. Preemptively moving is a risk you may have to take.
4. "A couple of months" is nothing in this job market. Hopefully you are continuing to build your portfolio while you do this. Also, you should be networking. And of course, the networking is all closer into town -- IGDA LA monthly events, WIGI monthly mixer in Santa Monica, etc.

 

 

I appreciate the advice.  I know the job market right now is tough, and I do plan to up my game when it comes to networking and such.  I've been in contact with my college's career advisers and I'm looking for new places to apply daily.

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Based on my own experience and the feedback I got from various people (both professionals and not):

 

- When landing on your page, I want to know immediately who and what I am dealing with. State your name and role so I don't have to figure out what you want to do. Make it a Title/header thing: James Anderson - Designer or something similar. I would save the story you have there right now for an "about me" section or at the resume page.

- The design of your site is not really appealing. It might be a choice, it might be my personal taste not being the same as yours, but I do think that as a designer, it could be more interesting (without losing the main perspective of showing off your work!)

- Get a proper host and a proper address. I heard (not sure if that's also the case now) that Wix doesn't work well with mobile phones and tablets. If people can't view it, people will not bother again mostly.

- Be more punctual. Most people do not want to large texts that might or might not explain properly what you did. I found having a list of important things I did alongside a short text explaining stuff in more detail works very well. This way you can quickly see what I did for a project and if interested, people can read more about it.

- If scripting is an important aspect for you as a designer and you want to show that off, show snippets!

- Global Game Jam games are fun to show off, but it's empty. You won first place with it, which is a nice thing but you're not showing anything and this makes it look a bit suspicious. 

 

Hope it helps and good luck! :)

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Thanks for your suggestions. I made some changes to the design. I'm not seeing the bug you described with the contact button when I go to the site so I'm not sure about that, and I haven't decided yet if I want to get rid of the page like you said or find another way to make it look less empty.

Great! I think it looks better now, the sections are more recognizable. The contact button bug is not present now, maybe with the changes it dissapeared.

 

When I click on a picture it zooms in but keeps the same height and width of the thumbnail, and moving the mouse over this area scrolls the image. Is it intended? It looks weird and unexpected, and isn't really usefull to see the details of the image. Maybe you can open the image in another tab or show it in a popup that covers all the window. I'm using Firefox 29.0.1.

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When I click on a picture it zooms in but keeps the same height and width of the thumbnail, and moving the mouse over this area scrolls the image. Is it intended? It looks weird and unexpected, and isn't really usefull to see the details of the image. Maybe you can open the image in another tab or show it in a popup that covers all the window. I'm using Firefox 29.0.1.

 

This is what I wanted to mention as well. I don't think it's a bug, but it's not the best way of showing the image. :)

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I'm looking for new places to apply daily.


Use gamedevmap and gameindustrymap. Build a database, and network. The commute begins now.

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