You may have seen our Hey students! post about letting go of leave-behinds. But”¦ as a counterpoint, I feel that I should share the leave-behind
I used while trying to secure a job after graduation.

The leave-behind I used right out of college was gift wrapped and sealed with a wax stamp.The leave-behind I used right out of college was gift wrapped and sealed with a wax stamp.

As we discussed in our previous post, a leave-behind is typically a design school project that is made to give to someone after your interview. It is usually meant to highlight your design work – and hopefully – stick around to serve as a reminder to your potential future employer about how awesome you are.

And in that format”¦ I completely agree that it’s better to not to have a leave-behind. If they are just a miniature version of your portfolio, and they aren’t thoughtfully considered or well constructed, then they are a waste of time.

However, I think leave-behinds should be less about showing the work that
you have already gone over with your interviewer and more about showcasing your talents and who you are as person. Nobody will keep a self-serving example of your work. But people will remember a thoughtful gift (and the person that gave it).

My leave-behind included my personal business card.I included my personal business card with my leave-behind.
I used a variety of materials, including vintage photographs and red-lined graph paper. I used a variety of materials, including vintage photographs and red-lined graph paper.
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So with that in mind, for my leave-behind, I utilized my love of paper (and books) and my talents as a book-binder to create small custom journals. To match my mostly black-and-white personal identity, I used vintage photographs from an old book, as well as translucent red graph paper to create the book block. The cover was black linen book cloth to match my business cards. To finish it off, I wrapped them in black tissue and sealed them with a custom-produced wax seal of my personal monogram. My interest in material selection and the physical craft of design have always played a large role in my work, and my leave-behinds accentuated that while pairing it with a bit of who I am as a person.

I think that if you are going to create a leave-behind, make it about more than
just your work. Make it about who you are.

The custom stamp used to make my personal monogram.The custom stamp
used to make my personal monogram.