Joya Jenna January 30, 2021 Resume
Before they’ve even met you in person an employer will make judgments about your personality and professional capabilities based on the look of your resume alone. So, make sure those first impressions are as positive as possible, which will improve your chances of getting to the interview stage (where you’ll, of course, wow the interviewer with your sparkling personality). Choosing an elegant, legible typeface and setting it nicely on the page will have more positive impact than a layout weighed down with gradients, eyesore colors and novelty fonts. Show off your creative side in a subtle way, by proving that you know when there’s a time and a place for being ultra-experimental…and for some jobs you may apply for a professional resume isn’t the place to do it.
If you’re sending a portfolio, resume, and cover letter to apply for your dream creative role, think about how you can make all the elements of your application look more unified and professional. Treating your job application as an exercise in branding is a great way to both elevate your application to the next level and prove to your future employer that you can be creative while working within a set of brand rules. Before you begin creating your portfolio, resume, and cover letter, lay down some simple rules for your personal brand.
Odds are, you’re looking for a role that’ll make good use of your skillset. If this is the case, fine-tune the design of your resume to make a nod to your chosen profession. For example, if you’re a publishing designer, make your resume look a little bookish. Use classic typefaces like Caslon and Baskerville. Structure the layout to mimic a beautifully typeset book page. If you’re a web designer, take inspiration from this digital-inspired resume template and give your layout a digital-inspired design with neon pops of color, data-like icons and bars, and a precise, clean-cut layout. Just like a beautifully designed web page, right? Use your creative resume as an opportunity to show off your design skills in practice. This will make the look of your resume a great talking point at the interview stage and will showcase your enthusiasm for your career of choice.
Using only one font throughout your resume would result in a pretty boring resume design. There are thousands of beautiful and free or low cost fonts available online. So, there’s no excuse to stick to the same old boring fonts everyone else is using. Consider using one font for creative resume headings and one font for your body text. You can also experiment with different font weights.
Since you’ll want to be swapping different information in and out depending on the job you’re applying to, keep a resume outline or master resume on your computer where you keep any information you’ve ever included on a resume: old positions, bullet points tailored for different applications, special projects that only sometimes make sense to include. Then, when you’re crafting each resume, it’s just a matter of cutting and pasting relevant information together. Think of this as your brag file.
Perhaps the role you’re applying for is more administrative, even if it’s within a creative company, or the company isn’t so much a youthful start-up but more an established, formal enterprise. Applying for a role at an architecture firm or marketing company? Perhaps a more stripped-back resume design would be more fitting. This means no photos (or at the very least, no colorful cropped images from Facebook…but I’m trusting you wouldn’t subject any future employer to those anyway), no graphics, and no colors that’ll give a CEO a headache. Choose a classic sans serif typeface and keep the structure of your minimal resume conventional. Flush type to align left, to keep your text traditional in style. Allow for white space to make the whole design appear serene and professional. Use simple, thin lines (look to the Stroke Tools in Adobe software) to divide sections of content into manageable chunks. Use color sparingly—as a little pop of blue to mark out subheadings catches the eye without being overbearing.
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