What are some good projects to show in your portfolio for a self-taught designer? And what is a good way to find a first job in a company/ graphic design studio as a self-taught graphic designer?
First of all you shouldn't different a self-taught designer portfolio to a professional designer portfolio. The quality and the complexity of the projects may be different but the concept it is the same. So take ispiration from professional designers portfolio. The projects you present in your portfolio should be realistic, even better if real case studies. Start with really small businesses in your local area, or work for charity, this will make you works on real projects and enlarge your portfolio. If possible work on project on the same graphic bench the company/ graphic design studio you want to work with are involved. For example if you want to work for apple you should deflect your project on hi-tech product design and interface design, instead if you want to work with Nike you should work on t-shirt design and sport marketing graphic design. Those are only examples but it's better if your portfolio is specialized in the same as your aspiring job.