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The Evolution of my Portfolio Website

I was going through an old hard-drive of mine and I came across some pretty hilarious images of my first website. This gave me the idea to revisit all of the iterations of my portfolio site throughout the years.

Now to give you some background info, I’m a self taught web developer. I learned how to write code out of necessity in high school when I wanted to sell my paintings online, but couldn’t afford to hire someone.

As a full disclaimer, the things your about to see are pretty frightening. I honestly can’t believe I thought some of these things looked good, but it really shows how much I’ve developed as a designer.


My First Websites: 2005 & 2006

Okay, let the fun begin! Below are the first two sites, which as I mentioned were built to feature my oil paintings. The first site on the left was created somewhere around 2005 and I’m really not sure what to say about it. I guess I was going through an emo period hah! Next was the first redesign about a year later, which utilized a much brighter colour palette and a more cohesive look. He’s learning…


GB Designs: 2009

Travelling down the timeline to 2009, the next website was built to offer my freelance design and illustration services. This was really when I just started to realize I wanted a career in graphic design. You can also tell that it was a big period of experimentation. There are a million different fonts, all kinds of patterns and textures and everything was too big! This also marked the appearance of my first logo as I began to call my company “GB Designs”. Definitely left a lot to be desired…


Grant Burke Design & Illustration: 2012

Arriving in the 2010s, the next version of my website was one that I used for the past 3 years. It was only a month ago that I revamped it and switched over to my current site. This version was built using the responsive WordPress theme Workality Lite and was clean and simple. It had one purpose, to showcase my work and I think it did that quite well. It also featured my new monogram logo, which was a huge leap forward from the GB Designs mark.


My Current Website: 2014

Our last stop on this journey is my current site. This was the first responsive website that I developed myself and it was definitely a challenge. I wanted to go with a very modern look that was professional and appeared more like a business than a student portfolio site. Comparing this final version to the original nearly 10 years ago is pretty amazing. It’s often difficult to see yourself improving on a daily basis, but when you step back and take a look on a larger scale its pretty rewarding to see how far you’ve come.


Grant Burke

Grant is a freelance designer and illustrator, born and raised in the Toronto area. He has worked with clients from around the globe and focuses on building unique brand identities and developing illustrations for product packaging and apparel.

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