Freshman Entrance Portfolio Requirements for Art Majors

A student creates a beautiful sculpture of a face

We’re eager to see your work. Portfolio reviews are an important prerequisite for admission into our art degree programs, excluding interior design.

Students who have applied to an art degree program at IUP will receive a letter of invitation from the Art and Design Department for a portfolio review.

The goal is to determine whether your portfolio demonstrates potential for success in professional studies in our art program. Your work will be reviewed on the basis of technical, compositional, and creative skills.

What Should I Include In My Portfolio?

  1. Include 10-12 works created within the last year or two.
  2. At least one of these should be a drawing executed from life and not from a photograph.
  3. The remaining pieces should include two-dimensional and three-dimensional works in various media that showcase your strengths. We also recommend including artwork that demonstrates your ability to use color.
  4. All artwork that is derived from photographs or is computer-generated should demonstrate technical, compositional, and creative skill.

When Do I Submit My Portfolio for Review?

Digital portfolios may be submitted at any time according to the guidelines listed below. Physical portfolio reviews take place on Experience IUP: Fine Arts Audition/Portfolio Day events, held throughout each academic year. For questions, please call the Department of Art and Design at 724-357-2530 or email

How Should I Format and Present My Portfolio?

If you are submitting a physical portfolio as part of an Experience IUP: Fine Arts Audition/Portfolio Day event, please ensure all work is organized neatly in a single portfolio case which has your name and address clearly written on the outside.

  • Your name should be clearly printed on the back of a 2-D or the bottom of 3-D work.
  • No loose work or rolled work should be submitted.
  • Submitting a digital portfolio is also possible and encouraged for students who aren't able to visit for an Experience IUP: Fine Arts Audition/Portfolio Day event. Details on submitting a digital portfolio, including documentation, are below.

Submitting Digital Portfolios

Submitting a portfolio online is easy and only takes a couple of moments. Below are the guidelines for a digital portfolio submission.

  1. Document Your Artwork
    1. For traditional artwork, you'll want to begin by photographing or scanning it. A modern smartphone provides good enough quality for a portfolio submission. However, be sure to use good lighting (photographing outside on a cloudy day is perfect), and that your artwork is sharp and not blurry, and fills as much of the frame as possible in the final photo.

    2. For digital artwork, you've already got this covered and can move on to STEP 2.

  2. Save Your Artwork
    1. JPG or PDF files are suggested for submission due to their small file size and universal accessibility.

    2. If you have access to Photoshop, please make sure images are no longer than 1024px on their longest side, which helps reduce file size. If you don't have access to Photoshop, we are happy to receive images however you are able to send them.

    3. Save the files with your last name so that we can easily identify your work when saved.

  3. Submit Your Artwork
    1. Submitting artwork is the easiest part! Simply email your work to

    2. Alternatively, you may email us a link to a website, cloud storage, or portfolio site (behance, etc.) to

Transfer Student Portfolios

  1. Include 12-15 works in your portfolio. Submit your two best works from each studio area you've taken in the school from which you're transferring.
  2. Include additional artwork that represents your area of greatest strength and interest.

IUP is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution. Please direct inquiries concerning equal opportunity to Director of Affirmative Action, IUP, G-30 Sutton Hall, Indiana, Pa. 15705.