It’s safe to say that portfolios have been a vital tool since the early days of commercial body piercing. Portfolios are a way for piercers to display their talents, show off their personal style, and of course leave a lasting impression on a new client. Sometimes portfolios also serve as a piercer’s first impression to future clients, which means your portfolio needs to be up to date, welcoming, professional, and above all else a great representation of yourself, and your work!
Portfolios have certainly come a long way since the typical scrapbook style album sitting on a front counter, with printed off photos taken on your old camera.
Nowadays, many piercers have chosen to move their portfolios online to platforms like Facebook or Instagram. Many piercers also have digital versions of their portfolios playing on monitors within their studio, or even a professionally printed book that clients can flip through in the lobby or waiting areas of their shop!
In this blog post we wanted to go through a few tips on how to modernize an out of date portfolio, to help your clients get a better understanding of your skills!
As much as a physical book is fun to flip through, many clients start their search for piercing inspiration, and a trustworthy piercer online. This means that you need to utilize social media and your camera phone to get your portfolio visible online.
By posting photos of your piercings, and your studio’s jewelry selection regularly, clients will get to know your work, your environment, and your personality before even stepping foot into your shop.
Social media also allows you to use tools like location tagging, and hashtags. Using relevant hashtags can help people discover your work, and location tagging can help to bring in people who are close to your area.
Something to remember when putting your work online is to ensure that you always keep it professional. This will become your work account and is how people will see your business. The goal is to leave a positive and lasting impression, that will get clients into your studio!
In addition to this, you will also need to keep in mind the platform's guidelines when it comes to the type of content that can be posted. When it comes to piercings many platforms do not permit posting pictures of certain body parts (nipples, genitals etc).
In this case, you may not be able to post photos of nipple piercings, or genital piercings you’ve done online, without running the risk of being reported. If a client has specific questions regarding those piercings, we suggest that you ask them to come in for a consultation, or phone call where you can discuss your previous work and experience in that area.
Ask for your client’s permission
Obviously, in order to create a portfolio, you’ll need to take photos of your work. But in order to take a photo, it is important that you ask your client if they are comfortable with that before taking out your camera or phone.
Most of the time clients are happy to be featured, and will be flattered that you're proud of the work you’ve done! But in some cases, people may feel uncomfortable, or may not want to appear on social media, or within your portfolio. That is something you’ll just have to respect, as we all have our own boundaries. There will always be another piercing to take photos of!
Feature all body types and skin tones
In this day and age, we all want to see a lot more representation! Whether that be, gender, race, age, or body types, your clients are all different and deserve to be featured in your work. Clients are also more likely to want a piercing if they see it represented on a body, ear, face, etc. If they can relate to it more. Piercings look great on everyone, and it's important to show that off!
If you take a quick look at @mirobodypiercing’s instagram you’ll see an array of clients that include different genders, backgrounds, ages etc! It’s so important to be aware of creating diversity within your portfolio, and we think he does a great job of this!
Feature recent jewelry and piercing trends
Trends are constantly changing, especially in the piercing world. We’ve seen oversized titanium jewelry, constellation piercings, dainty gold pieces, stacked lobes, double nostrils and a huge amount of other trends come and go. Featuring trends like this within your portfolio can help to inspire clients who are looking for something a bit more out of the norm.
@Alex.Kane.Piercing posts a lot of stacked and out of the box piercing trends. Because of this he has had more and more clients ask for more obscure placements, which is always cool to see!
Try to include some examples of clients with unique anatomy
All bodies are different, and for piercers this can actually be a really fun aspect of the job! Although many piercings are anatomy dependent, sometimes you can get a bit creative on making a certain piercing work, for a client that does not exactly have the ideal anatomy.
For example, a lot of us don’t have the ideal anatomy for an industrial , but that does not mean we can’t achieve a similar look with the help of a creative piercer! Featuring piercings that accommodate unique anatomy will show that you’re creative and resourceful! And for clients who may have thought they were not built for a certain piercing, this can be really exciting for them to see!
@Piercedbygina has done a great job showing examples of how she has tweaked piercing placements and jewelry to help clients achieve their desired look!