Design looks good to me (the first, not the second, which has flow issues in the whitespace that could be confusing). You just have to be careful not to over-load it with too many items. Include only your best work. Don't feel that you have to include lots of categories, or put up your entire history.
My opinion is that it's best if you include only things you think people might hire you for as a primary responsibility. That means show only your "expert" skills. If you've got a bit of breadth and can do other things, that's good -- keep that in reserve. Mention your other skills in a job interview or phone screen, if it seems appropriate. Provide examples only if asked for (but that does mean you should have them on hand). Does anyone disagree with this advice?
Never show "just ok" work to pad out your portfolio. One stunningly great item is much better than 15 "just ok" items.
This is really, really important. Even if you've got some nice things, a single item that isn't up to par with the rest of your portfolio could change someone's mind about you.
Your original design has these big banner images that are, functionally, just cropped thumbnails. I want to be able to see and evaluate your work without having to click-fest. That means the images in your new design have to be complete images, large enough to make out properly. You should have an even larger version available so that if I want to scrutinize it, I can.
And, this point is not necessarily for you, but in case someone searches for "portfolio" and finds this thread:
Don't show your work in chronological order, assuming the reviewer will see your progression and be impressed. If someone opens your portfolio and the first thing they see is old and terrible, they will simply close your portfolio again. Best work first. Always. I find it surprising how many people new to job hunting get this wrong.