Date of entry

September 2022

This information is for applicants to Animation BDes (Hons) who have received an invitation to upload their digital portfolio for assessment

About your portfolio

As part of your application to study at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, you need to submit a digital portfolio of work showcasing your development, creativity, skills, presentation and enthusiasm for your creative practice.

Portfolio format

Your digital portfolio should consist of one PDF file showing of up to 15 pages of work.

File format

  • One PDF document with up to 15 pages of work and one contents page
  • No more than 50MB
  • Named using your full name and student ID number for example MaryAnnBaxter_1234567.pdf

Including text and image

Each page should contain high quality images of your work - you can have more than 1 image on each page.

You should include a brief description of each piece of work indicating media, size and date produced (for example Image 1 – Acrylic paint, 30cmx15cm, November 2019).

Some example pages are provided below. This is just one example - your layout, type of work and style may be totally different, but you should aim for a similar balance of text and image.

Including video content (optional)

You can include up to 5 minutes of video content by sharing a link to a video hosting service (like YouTube or Vimeo) or cloud storage (like Dropbox or OneDrive) in your digital portfolio.

Make sure your link is publicly accessible (or provide a password if your video is password protected). Do not provide us with your personal login details.


  • Demonstrate your creative ideas, skills, abilities and personality
  • Show examples of your thinking and developmental process (usually in the form of pages from your sketchbook)
  • Carefully consider the order of the content displayed in your portfolio. You may wish to arrange your work by a particular theme or by specific projects undertaken.
  • Make sure your images are clear, bright and at a scale suitable to view online
  • Use typography that is legible for online viewing

What we expect

Your portfolio will be assessed across five criteria:

  • research, development and sketchbooks
  • creativity and originality
  • practical competence and application of skills
  • quality, presentation and selection of work
  • engagement with the subject

You should keep these criteria in mind when deciding what to include in your portfolio. Demonstrating your journey from inspiration to outcome and showing the range and quality of your creative skills, is as important as polished, final pieces of work.

Research, development and sketchbooks


Evidence your analysis of project themes. We’d like you to demonstrate your inquisitiveness and your engagement with the research process. Research into human anatomy through observational drawing is essential.


Show us how your research informs your project development. Give us an indication of your decision-making process which supports your rationalised development ideas and final project outcomes.


Examples of observational drawing sketchbooks are essential. We expect you to enjoy observational drawing on location, when you are out and about – drawings of people and animals that you have observed from life (not for photographs).

We’d like to see several examples of pages from your sketchbooks to get a sense of your design process.

You might include:

  • visual references
  • notated observations
  • physical sketching
  • experimentation with materials

Creativity and originality

Show that your completed work is informed by qualitative research and development; and that ideas and opportunities have been explored.

Be sure to include a good variety of original work – and show how you have developed this work into finished pieces.

Please do not show us any fan art or work that is copied from popular animation or games.

Practical competence and application of skills

Show us how successfully your ideas are developed into initial concepts and then into final outcomes.

Your choice of media, materials, quality of rendering, attention to detail, and practical skills can all inform this aspect of your work.

Be sure to demonstrate awareness of your target audience.

Show us your capabilities in life drawing – an essential part of your portfolio together with quick gesture drawings. We would like to see your understanding of human anatomy through drawings.

Quality, presentation and selection of work

Your portfolio should show work which is well presented. We want to see that you take pride in what you do.

Try to submit work that shows your awareness of contemporary industry practice and choose from a variety of projects. Select work which best represents your current capabilities and passions.

Show us work relating to the animation pipelines. This can include:

  • visual development (such as concept art)
  • storyboarding
  • layout and background design
  • character design
  • animation tests (2D or 3D)
  • 3D skills (such as modelling, texturing, rigging and lighting)

Engagement with the subject

Your portfolio should show:

  • that you are investigating contemporary and/or traditional practice/practitioners throughout your work
  • evidence of a serious interest in – and growing awareness of – your subject discipline, across research, development and finished outcomes
  • that your final outcomes in project work reflect an understanding of the different ways that contemporary designers engage with their target audience
Applied for more than one Art & Design course?

You need to upload a portfolio for each course you have applied for.

You may choose to include different work in each portfolio to showcase your strengths, but this is not a requirement.


Receiving your invitation

When you are invited to upload your portfolio, we will email your invitation to both your personal and email address. You will not be notified of an invitation via UCAS.

Rather than issuing all invitations at once, we release them in phases depending on when your application has been assessed by our Admissions Team.

After you have been invited

You should upload your digital portfolio as soon as possible after you receive the email invitation. The final deadline is 1 March 2022 by 18:00 (UK Time).


If you are unsuccessful

We will let you know the outcome of your application via UCAS and by email to both your personal and email address.

If you are made an offer

You will receive an offer (conditional or unconditional) via UCAS and by email to both your personal and email address. You will then be invited to attend an on-line event to meet with academic staff to allow you to ask questions about the School and Courses.

If you are invited to interview

You will receive an invitation by email, but you will not be notified on UCAS. Interviews will take place on-line in March. You will also have the opportunity to show additional work at your interview. Full details will be included in your interview invitation.

Upload your digital portfolio

You need to upload your digital portfolio to My Applications on eVision.


We will consider all aspects of your application including qualifications, personal statement, reference, and portfolio. It is therefore important when completing your UCAS application to include all relevant qualifications including any obtained at High School (where applicable).

Any questions?

Portfolio guidance

Help with My Applications