One of my favorite parts of working behind the chair is the ritualization of documenting the work. I've built in time to my services to make sure it happens. I've found that it's a great way to build a portfolio, make people feel important, and attract a clientele who find value in my work. I'm often asked for advice on what more a person can be doing to be proud of the pictures they take. It's important to note that I have no background in photography and that most of what I've learned has come from trial and error, and finding mentors whose work I admire. I've experimented with many different approaches to how I stage, shoot, and share my pictures over the years. Here are a few tips for taking Instagram-worthy photos.
1. Dress the hair as beautifully as you can. If you're going to take a picture, make sure it's the best example of your work you can possibly produce. This also means that not everything you shoot will be useable. If you don't have a great picture that makes you feel proud, then don't put it up. Avoid pictures that have unwanted tangles or kinks. Hair that is undone or messy is great as long as it registers as purposeful in the picture.
2. Light it well. Lighting is just as important to the picture as the dressing itself. Lighting sets the mood and allows the viewer to see the detail. It also captures the richness of a color. I almost always shoot with my phone, as I'm not a professional photographer and do not pretend to be. So for that reason, I don't use flash. I've found that it makes my hair look greasy and drowns out the detail in the work. My preference is to use natural light if possible. I've also invested in a few soft boxes and ring lights when it gets too late in the day.
3. Choose your backdrop carefully. The framing and proportion of your picture will either emphasize the work or distract away from it. My preference is to use a solid background as it's simple and puts all the focus into the client and work. But there are many hairdressers whose work I admire who use a patterned wall, retail space, cityscape, and the like to set the stage. Scenic backgrounds give a picture, the client, and your personality a certain character that may help to attract more people who like the same thing. Avoid stuff that's too busy or distracting. I've seen pictures where the hair is great but there's a stain on the wall or hair and other garbage on the floor. Remember that potential clients might notice these things and make judgments about whether or not you're a fit based off of these eyesores.
4. Consistency. Continuity is important. I treat my Instagram like a portfolio of my work. My pictures and posting habits have a very similar tone and feel about them, and I've taken note to how my favorite hairdressers to follow, although different on their tone and posting habits, all have continuity. It helps you target a specific client you want to do business with. Don't get me wrong- every once in a while I experiment and evolve to keep it interesting. It's a part of the growing process, but I try to avoid making my page look too busy.
Photo: Shutterstock | iordani
I'm Commissioned. Can I Leave Work "Early?"
Step-By-Step: How To Cut Fringe Bangs
Proud hairdresser. Passionate educator. Follow me on insta - Christianawesome
Skin & Esthetics
For Future Professionals
Textbooks & Materials
State Board Practice Tests
Continuing Education (CE) Classes
Advertise with Us