When covering portfolio platforms for creatives, it’s difficult to really know where to begin. While there is a strong case for building a dedicated portal to display your work – be it on a WordPress site, Tumblr blog or elsewhere – there’s a plethora of hosted options out there that let you create a simple compendium of all your favorite pieces.
For example, Behance has carved something of a niche for itself online, letting users share and find creative work. But there’s room for one more in the market, right?
“The most awesome stage”
Last year, Facebook's VP of Design thought the TNW Conference main stage was the best she'd ever been on.
Dropr is a UK-based startup that’s striving to “build the first platform for all creative heads.” It has been available online for a little while already, but as it’s just leaving its beta stage, we thought we’d check it out. And from our initial tinkerings here, it does have an interesting proposition on its hands.
How it works
Once in, you can also choose to connect with your existing networks, including Vimeo, LinkedIn, Flickr, SoundCloud, MySpace and Behance. This is not only designed to help with your exposure, but also to ease the content-importing process.
First up, Dropr has a pretty decent array of content on board, with portfolios and projects aplenty to feast your eyes on.
From within your Dashboard, you can manage all your interactions, messages and inspirations. You can use the top navigation bar to filter your stream, or simply switch to Gallery View to see the inspiring stuff.
There’s also a ‘Cup of Inspiration’ feature, which includes six projects. Every 2 hours, Dropr ‘refills the Cup’ with a project that you may really like. And this should learn over time – to make the Cup know what you like most, it helps if you interact with artwork on the network, including commenting on projects, collect pieces and following other creatives.
If you’re looking for theme-specific content, you can search by keywords. In this case, I searched for ‘technology’, and was presented with a range of relevant photos and illustrations:
In terms of creating your first portfolio or project, again, it’s pretty straight forward – and not only can you tailor the design to your needs, but you can also invite others to join in using the ‘Members’ section, by giving them editing rights, which could be handy on joint projects.
It’s not just about static imagery ether – music, videos and texts can be reeled in. Moreover, you can share Flash and HTML5 pieces here, the latter of which requires you to upload a ZIP folder which contains an ‘index.html’ file.
While you can manually upload your files to your Dropr portfolio page, you can also drag-and-drop them. And the speed at which you can create a simple, but beautiful, portfolio is impressive.
If you’re a creative with a finger in a number of different pies, or you’re responsible for managing a group of artists, you can control multiple portfolios with just one log-in. There’s no need to switch accounts. Also, photos, music, videos, text and other interactive pieces can be pulled together into a single embeddable project.
Indeed, the embed feature is particularly nice – once you’re done with your project or portfolio, you can showcase your work elsewhere using simple iFrame code. For the purposes of testing Dropr out, I compiled a little travel photograph gallery, which I’ve embedded here.
It’s worth noting that I did encounter some navigational issues with Dropr. Maybe it was just me, but I didn’t find moving between the different sections entirely intuitive. Also, when I thought I had published my portfolio by clicking the giant ‘tick’ button with ‘Done’ next to it, I later discovered that I had to go back in and move a little slider to actually make this public.
These are all tweaks that can be made, however, but as it stands I can see a lot of people taking to Dropr.