There is a certain allure to the Dribbble community since it’s a small body of select designers who curate the entry of makers of quality work. Although there are plenty of candy-coated shots, plenty of top designers (and other makers) have work posted there. You can’t ever pay your way to post things, but recruiters and professionals can upgrade to a paid account to search and make lists, among other things (but not post work). Getting a dribbble invite might be impossible unless know what you’re doing and are diligent.
I got drafted by Jason Frost, a nice designer from Georgia with screen printing chops. And I was at the right place at the right time. Here are a few tips that led me to get drafted, and hopefully they’ll give the upcoming generation some ideas.
- Have an online portfolio. Of your best work. This should be obvious. If you don’t have the energy to make your own site, use behance, cargo collective, or whatever you can.
- Register. There is no shame in signing up as a prospect. It also gives people the chance to actually invite you anyway.
- Ask your immediate friends and peers if they’re dribbling and hoarding invitations.
- Be active in your community. This would include your digital network and your local organizations. Follow dribble pros you admire and have your portfolio linked in your profile. Also follow twitter profiles because many dribblers are tweeting.
- Do good things. Hold a door open for someone, and excel at your craft.
- Prepare. Have a few dribbble sized pieces (400×300, and @2x: 800×600) and show them off. It might be a longshot, but you could upload to sites where there are people who may be looking such as www.draft.im and dribbbledrills group on Flickr.
- Spam everyone you know on twitter at least thrice a day. Kidding. Don’t go overboard with #dribbble hashtaggers–they probably don’t have any invites and most are spammers anyways. But you can be smart about searching. Scout people who are offering invites and be sincere when replying. Nothing shows you don’t care like “yo @UXunicorn, #dribbl iz unfair u shuld #invite me” on the last 40 remarks about dribbble. When I tried, I used some thoughtful search operators to siphon out a lot of beggars and junk tweets. I even put the search results into an RSS feed in case I had free time to find kind designers who had invites lying around.
Keep trying, but don’t overdo it. It’s just a website. Work on your skills first. If you’re good, you have better chances of doing anything.