Design portfolio platform Dribbble started in 2009 as a small, online community for designers and illustrators. It's often praised for the high quality creative work it showcases, and that's no doubt because it wasn't the most accessible art portfolio site out there.
Previously, you couldn't just sign up and start uploading—you had to be invited by an artist already on Dribbble (who, presumably, is pretty darn good at what they do). That isn't the case anymore, though.
Dribbble Removes Its Invite Requirement
Dribbble now allows creatives "from all walks life" to apply for a designer account, which allows you to upload your work to the platform.
When you create a Dribbble account, you're limited to viewing the work of other designers until you're upgraded to a designer account—through either an invite from another designer, or this new application process.
Why the change, when Dribbble has been invite-only since its inception? The company says it made this decision because the old system "no longer served the greater design community."
We were restricting tens of thousands of designers from showcasing their work every month resulting in too many designers being unable to find community, growth, and opportunities on Dribbble. (...) This allows us, as a design community, to build a bigger, more welcoming tent. Our hope is that this leads to a more inclusive and welcoming community.
How to Apply for a Designer Account on Dribbble
Applying for a designer account on Dribbble is a pretty quick and easy process. Follow these steps:
- Hover over your avatar in the top right corner, and click Learn more.
- Complete the requirements: upload your work (the more the better, apparently), write your bio, and fill in your work availability.
- Click the pink Apply now button.
Once you submit your application, the Dribbble team will review it in 24 hours or less. If you can't be bothered with all that, Dribbble invites from your friends and colleagues still work just as they always have.
What Is Your Favorite Portfolio Site?
It seems as though this is Dribbble's attempt to maintain its gallery of professional-level work while making its platform a little more accessible.
It's an interesting predicament that a lot of creatives don't really realize: when an art platform is open to everybody, that obviously means that new artists can sign up too.
Of course, that isn't inherently a bad thing, but if you're a company executive hoping to hire a creative professional for a major project, you probably want to search for prospects among the best of the best. That's a big chunk of the audience that Dribbble caters to.
We're excited to see if this change makes Dribbble more appealing to designers and illustrators in the coming months.