I'm redesigning my portfolio and I wonder what's the best experience. As many people do, I have a left column with a brief description of the project and on the right an image of the finished layout. What I've seen a lot out there is a button 'View Case Study' that leads to a complete different page.

But wouldn't it be better to use a slider instead?

- No need to go to a different page
- User can scroll down at any point to see rest of work without having to click a 'Back to Home' button

- User scrolling down will leave slider at any step, and not initial state
- Constrained space so user have to click to see more slides

Here is my idea:

enter image description here

  • Do you have to take into account users which have javascript disabled?
    – Knu
    Commented Jul 3, 2013 at 16:16

5 Answers 5


A few things to consider when using carousels:

  1. Be prepared for people not to view items after your initial slide. There's increasing data that shows people don't move past the initial slide. Dramatically so.
  2. If you do use a carousel, make sure the content is similar. In your current suggestion, it sounds like you would provide some introductory content to a project and instead of providing a "Read More"/"Case Study" link, you would just have the user move to the next slide. This breaks a user's mental model of what to expect in a carousel.
  3. Keep performance in mind. Having too many items or multiple carousels on a page can really affect a page's performance as users will be silently loading assets they might not even view (and given point #1, probably won't ever view).
  • That was helpful, haven't considered those issues. I shouldn't be too worried about the first item though, as I don't mind people not reading a case study except if it's an employer and I believe they would like to know about that information and I believe a js slider is more inviting than a separate page? might be wrong about this one though will check those studies. And about the second item, you are right I will consider having arrows on the first slide. Commented Jul 17, 2013 at 20:59

I must admit, I'm not a fan of sliders - they are harder to use for people who have impaired fine motor control. I don't know how many examples you have, but I would consider:

  • Vertical tabs, labelled with a project name. Each tab could display a description and image
  • A carousel: I'm not normally a fan of these either, but for content where the user might just want to browse and which doesn't need to be ordered or labelled, you could use the same approach.

Of the two I'd be inclined towards vertical tabs, but it all depends on your content :)

  • Thanks for your answer, however as you said my content is more than a description + image (I want to add more details about the project). And about the accessibility issues, I found this: "Moving UI elements usually reduce accessibility, particularly for users with motor skill issues who have difficulty clicking something before it's taken away." on NN/g and I wanted to clarify that the sliders wouldn't rotate automatically. Commented Jun 23, 2013 at 9:28

Your idea just fine. It is your portfolio and if you feel slider is ok, do it. This is point of your individuality!

Somebody else will copy it and so the new trend in portfolio building will start.


what is absolutely not a good experience is to present something that moves automatically and doesn't provide obvious functions to pause and navigate.

you can never predict how long a user will take to absorb the content in one panel (I often find they shift before I have had enough of a look).

if you do use a slider I would give it clear navigation buttons (left and right as well as a list if possible as left and right is easier to navigate - the mouse doesn't need to move, the list provides a text preview of the panel content) and I wouldn't set it to autoplay, though having a play and pause button is a nice feature.

for the record, pages can have similar function, there's no reason why a set of pages shouldn't be navigable with 'next' and 'previous' links


This format is best when the set of slider items must be considered in context to other content - which is above/below the slider area. If this is just a navigational strategy, then be sure to give the navigation to other section clear distinction and affordance.

Your most-likely limitation is that people browsing a visual portfolio need thumbnail groups to make browse-decisions. In this scenario the most common decision is previewing a small subset of the portfolio works, to quickly triage if more should be viewed.

If you impair the viewer from making this kind of triage, you risk them quickly judging the site design instead of the quality of your work(s).

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