How to create a portfolio for Computer Animation

Computer Animation - Sam Cullum

If you've been invited for an interview for our Computer Animation degree in Cardiff, you will need to bring with you a portfolio of work. So what should you include?

"The portfolio interview is a great way to gauge your enthusiasm for the subject as well as checking over the underpinning Art & Design skills we’ll need to build upon in the future," says Gareth Hutchinson, the course leader.

Be organised. Put your most recent and relevant work at the front; demonstrate a range of design projects and drawing skills. Be prepared to talk these through with clarity, confidence and enthusiasm.

Build a well-rounded portfolio that shows competence in a range of key areas such as:

  • Drawing; observational, life drawing, concept/design sketches, storyboarding, etc.
  • Fine Art based projects which may include painting, sculpture, printmaking, etc.
  • A range of 2D and 3D design can also be a useful way to display your abilities in creative thinking and following a design process. Include any model-making, product design, sculpture or ceramics that resulted from your designs. These can be photographed or documented in the portfolio if too large to bring in.
  • Bring sketchbooks which show evidence of working through the design process from research, design development and concept sketches. Or any sketchbooks which support your fine art or design projects.
  • You may also wish to bring examples of digital 2D or 3D CG work on a tablet, laptop, or HDD for consideration at the interview. Please don’t feel this is a requirement though as we’ll be teaching the CG stuff on the course. We’re much keener to see your more traditional Art and Design skills.

Include any projects you have done in your spare time or outside of school or college if you feel they are relevant to the subject. Maybe you make short films or are involved in a drama group. Talk about how these associated experiences have influenced you and your work.

We also want to see that you have investigated the industry you want to join. Show how you are familiar with, for example, which companies made a particular CG animated film, Game or TV series that you enjoy. Talk about any relevant work experience, visits to exhibitions or personal research.



  • Talk about your favourite CG Films, TV series and Games; what attracts you to these.
  • Research the companies, directors, designers, animators and artists that made them; what inspires you and why?
  • Enthuse about inspirational films and games released in the last year as well as older ones
  • Watch the ‘making of…’ DVDs and read 'Art of ...' books of some of your favourite films and games.