Portfolio Review Night is back for a third year! Get directly introduced to experienced creatives working in the industry and one-on-one facetime with professionals who want to see your work and help you. It’s a big headstart on your job hunt, and it'll help you avoid spending your early years doing work you don’t love. Get your resume right, polish your portfolio, and set yourself on the track to an awesome career in design or advertising.
This year we welcome professionals from Publicis, KBS, Shopify, Night Shift Studio, Hypenotic, Equal Parts Studio, VICE, Trout + Taylor, Cineplex Digital, Hambly & Wooley, Studio Jaywall, pb+j, Studio Wulf, Leo Burnett, and more for reviews and discussion panels.
-\-\- What… You Get -\-\-
— Three one-on-one reviews with experienced, high-level professionals for fifteen minutes each, where they give you concrete advice on how to improve your book. These pro's have hourly rates from $70 — $120/hr, so this exclusive time with them is a pretty great opportunity.
— You'll attend two discussion panels, where the pro's will share their wisdom and insights on a few different career-related topics (more about that below) with an open question period after. Again, more talking time, advice, and insights on the behind the scenes of studio or agency life.
— Get a professional headshot with Worker Bee Supply (at no extra change!) and put your best face forward. Just opt-in when you buy your ticket, and you'll have one headshot to use however you like. A photo session with these guys usually runs about $100, so this is a huge bargain.
— PRN is a big, crazy night, and you'll get a ton out of it — your schedule is jam packed and you'll have somewhere to be every minute of the evening, which is why we give you drinks and food to ensure you have enough energy to take it all in! Plus, there’s a couple extra little surprises when you arrive.
-\-\- Discussion Panels -\-\-
Each year we have three panel topics that a group of professionals will discuss and debate on. At the end of the discussion, attendees can ask the panelists questions. You can choose which two panels to attend when you purchase your ticket. This year's topics are:
The Nitty Gritty of Getting Hired
The best ways to interview and what CDs are looking for, how to set up your resume and cover letter so you stand out from the crowd, what the hiring process is like from the other side, how to negotiate your salary (and what should you even ask for), are internships worth it, and more.
Striking Out On Your Own
How to find work as a freelancer, how to convince clients to trust you (and pay you what you’re worth) when you’re just starting out, what kind of tax and legal stuff you have to watch out for, how to handle bad client requests or worse, working with recruiters, when can you expect to make a living off this, and more.
Love What You Do
How to figure out what kind of job is best for you based on your interests and values, the pros and cons of working for different kinds of companies and other arrangements (with or without perks), does the work you do in school reflect real world work, what to do if your ideal job doesn’t seem to be out there, how to set up a work/life balance you can be satisfied with, and more.
-\-\- Schedule -\-\-
7:00 pm — Everybody arrives and checks in, receive welcome package and eat dinner
7:30 pm — Round One starts
8:15 pm — Round One wraps up, break and headshots
8:30 pm — Round Two starts
9:15 pm — Round Two wraps up, break and headshots
9:30 pm — Round Three starts
10:15 pm — Round Three wraps up, headshots, chat and mingle
11:00 pm — End the night
-\-\- Portfolio Tips -\-\-
It's 2018, so most of you will probably have a digital portfolio. If you're bringing a laptop or tablet, it's recommended that you save a copy of your portfolio on your computer, because wifi isn't always reliable. Make sure your devices are fully charged before you arrive — prepare for and get ahead of any tech problems that can waste precious review time. Of course, print portfolios are lovely too, especially if you have more print pieces in your book (show them print skills!).
Your reviews will go by quickly, so choose two or three projects you really want feedback on, in order to make the most of your time. When you sit down with your reviewer, give them a quick overview of your work and then sit back, let them speak, and take notes. You're here to learn and listen, so give them as much time as possible to share their wisdom with you.
-\-\- About the Toronto Design Directory -\-\-
The Toronto Design Directory is an online resource for Toronto creatives. We regularly run events for the creative community, bringing people together around our shared passion of graphic design and visual communication, and connecting people to each other to strengthen our local community. Learn more at our website.
-\-\- FAQs -\-\-
— I can't make it on this date. Will I have another chance to attend?
Portfolio Review Night is a once a year event, so if you can't make it this year you'll have to wait until 2019! We do have other events throughout the year where you can network and meet other professionals, although there are no reviews. Sign up for our newsletter to hear about them, and so you can get a heads up next year and plan ahead for this unique opportunity.
— I've been out of school for 5+ years, is this event for me?
While we believe making new connections is important throughout your career, the reviews will be focused on design and copywriting basics and entry-level knowledge, so you're probably a little beyond what we're offering.
— I'm interested in UX, illustration, strategy, or another related creative field. Do the reviews cover those fields?
Our reviews focus primarily on graphic design, art direction (in relation to advertising), and copywriting. While some of our reviewers have experience or knowledge in other creative fields, we're not focusing specifically on skills outside of the these three areas. If you're, for example, a graphic designer with some interest in UX, or an art director with illustration skills, you may get a range of useful feedback. But if your focus is entirely on a creative field that's not graphic design, art direction, or copywriting, then you probably won't find the information you're looking for with us.
— I bought a ticket but now I can't make it. What can I do?
Refunds are available up until a week before the event because of how incredibly tight the organization for this event is. If you find out you can't make it before that point, request a refund so we can release your ticket to somebody on the wait list.