For today’s creative professionals, your online portfolio is arguably now more important than your résumé. In our era of peak personal branding, professionals are making themselves hyper-visible through the use of social media and slick personal website design. More and more, networking is taking the place of traditional credentials; as a result, people are creating platforms for themselves that turn on the axis of connectivity and pleasing aesthetics.
Koby Ofek, a Tel Aviv-based entrepreneur and former technology journalist, noticed this trend and has created a new website that speaks to the need for design inspiration when building a brand. Humans is like a carefully curated Pinterest board that offers insight into what the best personal websites look like, which services are used to create them, and the technology necessary to build them. “It started with a personal journey to find inspiration to create my place on the web. I wanted to raise my profile a bit and was thinking, ‘What would be the best way to go about it?’” Ofek says. “It’s hard to decide what to show and how. I wanted to see some examples of other people’s work before I designed my own project.”
When it comes time to choose a platform to host and design a website, users have options: WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace, just to name a few. All of these approaches, coupled with the option to code from the ground up, make it overwhelming for people to know which one will best suit their needs. For each website covered on the site, you can check out the design, technology, platform, color palette, awards given, and characteristics of the person who built it. You can also filter through the featured portfolios by color, industry, location, and more.
The websites seen on Humans were sourced from a huge swath of the web—via Twitter accounts belonging to web designers and developers, web-design award sites, and social-media platforms dedicated to design. His criteria for inclusion wasn’t to only add the best-looking websites, but to have a variety of styles, services, and technologies to see what’s already out there. There are minimalist websites with blank backgrounds, and flashy sites with all the design bells and whistles. “It’s up to the community to upvote what’s interesting and bubble up the better designs,” Ofek says.
Ofek launched Humans with 500 websites and has received roughly 1,200 submissions for inclusion since. Early on, reviews were mostly for professionals with some role in building the web—developers, designers, illustrators, writers, and so on. But over time, Ofek received requests to cover many other types of “offline” professions such as activists, hairdressers, authors, baristas, and more. Those categories are all coming soon to Humans. In the future, Ofek hopes to incorporate additional features to his crowdsourced inspo site. For instance, he wants to make it possible for users to view version changes, so they can track how a portfolio looked in the past and how it improved as web design evolved.
Since Humans launched about a month ago, Ofek’s been busy curating and updating it, so if you’re looking for his personal website online, you won’t find it. He’s been so focused on his passion project that he hasn’t had time to complete his own.