Twice a year, Behance hosts “Portfolio Review Week,” seven days of community-run events that give creatives around the world a chance to present their work and get feedback from their peers. We were psyched to hear this success story from young photographer Cody Min, who presented at an NYC event last year and received an internship offer on the spot!
One day last spring I opened an email from Behance and read an invitation to attend the April 2012 Behance Portfolio Reviews. I was excited to go, but even moreso when I found out I could actually request to present my own work. The organizer, Tom (founder of AIR ) emailed me back later that week, and approved me to be one of the five presenters.
On the night of the event, a lot of other people in the creative field showed up. I chatted with Oriole Poole, Experiential Designer, Richard Borge, an illustrator whose client list includes the NYTimes and Coke, and the team from Bazaart, a hot new fashion iPad app. It felt great to be there as a presenter – especially at age 17! I met some of the most interesting creatives on the planet, learned more about different industries, and also made valuable connections. You could feel the energy in the room.
My presentation went smoothly, and I received fantastic feedback. It was interesting to hear opinions not only from photographers, but also illustrators, art directors, and designers. The highlight of the night was meeting Becky Yee, fashion and commercial photographer. Her work was amazing, and I learned a lot in the brief time talking with her. She was so impressed that I was presenting my work at a young age, that she offered me an internship on the spot. I was floored.
My summer internship with Becky was probably the most I’ve ever learned about photography. By the end of the summer, I knew how to set up and collapse a studio, navigate the subways while loaded with 70+ pounds of gear, and how to organize clients. I learned how to light and shoot everything from lookbooks to ballet dancers, and everything in-between (including designer picnic baskets). Coincidentally, one of the most memorable shoots was with Bazaart, the startup team I met at the Portfolio Review. They had also met Becky at the event, and were as hooked on her work as I was.
Behance made this incredible connection with Becky possible, but going to the review also inspired me to keep creating and presenting my work. Behance has become an integral part of my creative process, and I’m excited to participate in future Portfolio Reviews.
Cody Min is a photographer and filmmaker. His client list includes Google, ING Group, The Foundation for Economic Education, and various politicians. You can view his work on his website: www.codymin.com and Behance: http://www.behance.net/codymin Give him a friendly shoutout on Twitter: twitter.com/codysogunmin