In some sectors, creative CVs and original job applications are neither common nor desirable. If you’re looking for a job within a creative industry like advertising, communication, design, within a start-up or a company with a creative department, then an original CV will set you apart from the rest!
Thinking (and creating) outside the box
Creative CVs are best prepared with Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. Though there are other tools to use, these programs may limit your imagination and the result may be unprofessional. If you need inspiration, you’ll find amazing CVs on websites such as behance.net or dribble.com, like this stunning example by Pernille Posselt from Denmark:
Don’t have the Adobe Creative Suite? No problem, you can find free demo versions and tutorials on the internet. You’ll probably need some time to fiddle about and find your way around the program before creating graphic elements and original layouts. Jonny Evans has created a design template (Designer’s Resume Template) for these cases – and it can be downloaded for free. Thanks Jonny! Important tip for the Adobe programs: Be sure to use guides!
Original and graphic CVs are not a problem in the creative sector and they are even standard among designers. If you want to primp up your classic CV but are not quite sure how it might be interpreted by HR managers, we recommend that you leave out decoration and instead work on original text segments and an attractive and integrative layout using Microsoft Word. In one of our previous blog posts we discussed free CV tools that do not require a degree in graphic design but that still visually enhance your CVs.
The Infographic CV
A CV dressed as an infographic can look stunning! Infographic CVs are minimalistic, clearly structured and visually compelling. However, it’s usually only the professionals like Anton Yermolov who can pull it off without help:
If you fancy trying out this format, you can often find cheap templates on the internet or try out the following free online tools.
The CV as product design
Going one step further: the CVs that break the mold, literally! CVs packaged as product designs or advertising flyers certainly break ranks with the mainstream. They are certain to be marvelled at for longer than other CVs because they are so eye-catching and appeal to our haptic perception. This example is by the Portuguese illustrator Elsa. It’s one of our particular favourites:
Creative CVs in collaboration with friends
Have a friend who’s a graphic design pro? Why not team up and collaborate? Amanda Lee, Brand Strategist and Kevin Tran, Artist and Designer, did just that! Its charm (and teamwork!) will surely get noticed.
No one can resist an original and unique CV. The previous examples have demonstrated that creative CVs are suitable for both postal applications, and applications by email.
The following people also employed unconventional means but they went even further. Christina Castro’s video CV, for example, is easy to implement and can complement conventional application documents wonderfully. This advertisement by Adam Pacitti has also entered the history books of original, viral job applications. Countless people have succeeded in attracting a lot of attention by making funny announcements online stating that they’re looking for a job. Among the most popular mediums are Youtube, Vine, all the other social media networks and sector-specific insiders, as was the case with Alec Brownstein’s now legendary application.
This short video by Brain Paul Lamotte, Bookmaker and Journalist from New York is also another inspiring example of thinking outside the box.
Digital Creative Victor Petit had a brilliant idea when he finished studying. This idea not only helped him get a lot of attention and a job, it was also widely copied by a host of other advertisers, a huge compliment! Imitations can be seen on his website.
Top tip: Is Facebook too private and Xing too professional for you? Why not try communicating your brand on Twitter or Google+? Twitter’s new layout is the perfect medium to publicise your personal brand online. Google+ is not really new anymore but it’s the next big thing. Its potential is still untapped by the masses – meaning that you can surprise your audience without fearing that photos or statuses from the past will come back to haunt you.