I believe the toughest part of being an Artist is building your clientele. You have to set yourself apart from others in the same industry you are in. It is important to have all your clients remain loyal and come back to your chair.
Before promoting your services to build a client list, portfolio building should be done first. Coming out of Cosmetology school and only having two years in the industry thus far, it is difficult to have people believe in you and your skills. That's why it is important to me that I build a decent portfolio with professional pictures. It was hard in Cosmetology school to take before and after pictures because you are booked with clients back to back, the lighting was bad or there's things in the background that draws attention away from the client's hair.
So how did I start building my portfolio? I used these platforms....
I went on craigslist and wrote a post offering free hair services.
"Get your hair done for free".
I offered all the services that I want portrayed in my portfolio; cutting down to coloring.
It only took one hour after posting for people to start responding back to my post.
My boyfriend is a photographer and both he and I created a home studio. After I did my clients hair, he took a professional picture and I added it to my portfolio.
If you decide to do a craigslist post, do not write down any personal information until they respond back. Be precise in what you are looking for. If you need haircuts only in your portfolio, mention you are looking for females, males, or both who are willing to get a free haircut. On the post. State your purpose for the post which is for portfolio building and let them know their picture will be take. Location should be given only after an appointment is set. Some people may respond and ask for a little trim. If that's not what you are looking for, kindly decline the response or if you need more practice in that area, set an appointment. It is very important to write
THOROUGH CONSULTATIONS WILL BE GIVEN.
People will then know you are serious about their hair and they will believe in your skills.
2. MODEL MAYHEM
Do you all know about the website Model Mayhem. This website is wonderful for networking and finding artists in the same profession as you or in a different profession. Simply build a profile and list your purpose for being on the platform. Offer free services. Collaborate with other artist who have the same goal as you. Make sure to take decent pictures or hire a photographer.
But, I highly recommend a barter system between you and other artist because that way, everyone will be winning. Everyone will have their skills be shown.
Visit the website for more details:
3. SOCIAL MEDIA
This is self-explanatory. Promote yourself and offer free services on your personal and professional social media pages. Your friends will pass it on to their page. Offer free services and get everyone to start talking about you and your skills. Create a portfolio on your social media pages, remembering to separate personal from professional.
I hope this help out for you, it did for me. Craigslist worked out the best for me. Those individuals couldn't judge me base on pictures or anything. They didn't know nothing of me so it was so easy for me to convince them of my skills and allowing me to do their hair for free.
Please visit my Artist page to collaborate or request a service from the artists listed.
Feel free to contact me or leave me a comment if you need help in building your brand or portfolio.