Does your portfolio truly reflect who you are as an artist? Or do you have a “fake” portfolio instead?
Ask yourself – is your portfolio packed with stuff you don’t necessarily like, but think clients (or your audience) would want to see? Do you have lots of different works, but very few pieces – or perhaps even none – that truly represent your style and voice? If you find yourself nodding yes, then you most probably have a case of fake portfolio-itis.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could put down the mask and feel confident enough to share with the world who you really are as an artist – and have clients and fans come to you because of it?
Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should
If you’ve ever filled up your portfolio with a mix of different styles in the hopes that it would appeal to a wider range of clients, you’re basically shouting “Hey! I’m not just a one-trick pony – I can do other stuff too!” Yes, you might be really versatile. But on the flip side, you say yes to clients and take on projects because you don’t want to pass up an opportunity. Any opportunity – even if it’s something that you aren’t excited about.
Don’t just be a hired pair of hands
Do the artworks in your portfolio look as though they were done by different people? It’s easy for clients to get confused when you present them with many different styles or interests. When that happens, you’re essentially distracting your clients – and they’re more likely to walk away. But if they do reach out, there’s a chance they’re merely hiring a hand to do their work (because it seems like you can do everything, remember?) When everyone looks like a hired hand, price becomes the main focus. Not your style, or voice.
Balancing what you want and what they want
It can be tough to create work that makes both you and the client happy. It’s much easier to find that balance when your work appeals to clients who like the way you think and create. An inconsistent portfolio without a clear voice can easily make you doubt your abilities. And when you doubt yourself, you lose precious time as you begin to question every decision you make. It may even one day cause you to lose confidence in the very work that you love doing, because you’ve been pulled in so many different directions.
Bring back the focus
So many people mistake their portfolio for being something that shows off what they can do. Instead, a good portfolio should work for you. It’s there to tell the world what you want to do, and what you do best. But it all starts from you. Figuring out what you love doing, and how you want to say it will make a big difference in building up your confidence – so that you can show your true self to potential clients and fans.
But how can you gain the confidence to create the work you love and attract people who’ll love what you do? The answer is by creating passion-driven personal projects to include in your portfolio – projects that reflect your style and voice as an artist; making it clear to prospective clients and fans what you have to offer.
Portfolio with Personality: How to attract clients & fans with your unique artistic voice & style
Here’s what you will learn in this online workshop:
Create work that you (and others) will love
Even if you love working as an illustrator, sometimes doing work for clients is not fulfilling on its own. If you’ve ever thought about creating your own children’s book or a range of fun products for your own brand, there’s no better time to start. Learn how you can work on your own projects and attract clients and fans who will share the same passion as you do.
Unlock your unique style & voice
Personal style isn’t just about visual aesthetics, it’s also about your voice and what you want to say. With so many artists and illustrators out there, how can you create a unique signature and execute it with confidence so that you can stand out in a crowded marketplace?
Instill trust in clients
Is there a need to pick one style, or would it be okay to have several different ones? There is no right answer, but there is a formula to this madness. Learn how you can speak in a consistent visual language that will instil confidence in your clients even if you have more than one style.
Turn ideas into reality
Creating the right personal projects in your portfolio will help expand your career. But artists can get stuck – they’re not sure what to do, and are not confident enough in their idea to execute it well. How can you create personal projects that will inspire you to explore your own voice and attract clients and gain new fans – even if you don’t have any ideas right now?
Present yourself confidently
Your portfolio should represent your current strengths, ideas and way of working. Think of it as a dynamic business card that can attract attention 24/7. Learn how you can speak to potential clients confidently through your portfolio, so they know who you are as an artist and why YOU are perfect for the job – even if you’re not professionally trained as an artist or illustrator.
Here’s what you’ll learn in the Portfolio with Personality online workshop
This online workshop will be delivered over 5 weeks, from 12th November to 15th December 2018. You’ll have access to a private forum that will be filled with video lectures, worksheets, and resources that’s accessible wherever you are in the world. This class is best for students who are able to participate online throughout – you’ll gain the most out of the experience if you join the discussions and be a part of the class!
What makes this online workshop different?
What sets this workshop apart from others is that I’ll show you how to use your current strengths, style and personality to create note-worthy personal projects that will endear you to clients and fans – even if you don’t have any ideas right now.
It’s the law of attraction – you’ll learn how to attract the right people by setting the bar for the kind of work you want to create. I’ll work with you to challenge, question and critique your work, and in doing so you’ll learn faster and progress much quicker than if you were to do it on your own. And because this is a very hands-on workshop, I’ve limited the number of students to a maximum of 21 students so that I can focus on each student.
This workshop is the first step in the Work/Art/Play syllabus. If you’re a shy artist, the program helps you gain confidence in your creative process by focusing on personal growth and internal motivations instead of merely reacting (or even surrendering yourself) to external forces and demands. By the end of the program, you’ll find yourself gaining full control of your career through organic yet steady growth.
Important: What happens after you click the button?
- When you click the “Buy Now” button, you’ll be directed to a Paypal site. You don’t have to have a Paypal account to make a payment – you can even use your credit card without registering for a Paypal account.
- After payment, you’ll be taken a webpage with a form. Please fill in the form with your name and email address (this is important!)
- Once you fill in the form, you’ll receive an email with more details about the class.
If you run into trouble at any point during this process, don’t fret! Email Amy at email@example.com and she’ll get you sorted out as soon as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What kind of results can I expect from your workshop?
If you are fully engaged in the course, at the end of it you would be able to come up with a personal project that will excite you. You’ll feel inspired like never before, and will be able to spot and create opportunities for yourself no matter where you are in your career.
You mentioned that you teach this class offline – will it translate well to an online workshop?
This is a great question! Teaching offline and online is very different, which is why I’ve adapted my teaching methodologies accordingly. Having run online classes and workshops since 2010, I’ve learnt through trial and error (and from student feedback!) what works and what doesn’t.
I’ve been studying the field of illustration and entrepreneurship for the past 10 years. I’ve spent 6 years of it sharing what I’ve learnt offline with students in a local college. I taught them how to discover their strength and style; and how to hone their voice through the creation of personal projects.
Most of my students have gone on to open their own online shops or were hired by clients based on their personal work – some have even won awards. They didn’t have an internet presence, thousands of Instagram followers, nor a Facebook page to begin with.
If you’ve ever had a ton of information thrown at you at an online class, you’ll know what I mean. It doesn’t work. You never get to the end of the class! In this class however, you’ll be working with me personally in a group setting so that we can learn better and faster. I take a very hands-on approach by guiding you every step of the way, just like how I teach offline.
What can happen if I create an interesting personal project?
So many things can happen!
You will be rewarded for your efforts in one way or another. Whether it’s through monetary means, fame, connection, commissions or networking – it’s hard to know exactly where it will take you. What I can promise you is that you will open up your world to a lot more opportunities.
How you’re going to run with those opportunities will be entirely up to you. People have different priorities in life and business and I don’t think merely measuring it with money is the only metric of success. It’s merely one of the fun parts of being an artist.
Will we be creating projects that will fit into particular markets?
Whenever you’re thinking of creating works in response to a market, by default you’re always going to be constantly altering yourself to fit the market – which is going to be an exhausting, never-ending chase because trends change and clients tend to be fickle. It means you’re valued only when clients and markets think you have value.
The purpose of the workshop is to create personal projects to add to your portfolio that will help uncover your potential, and to discover what it is you’re trying to say through your work. I’ll teach you how to think strategically when you begin, but it involves your imagination rather than focusing too much on what you think a client wants.
If you open your mind and heart to different possibilities, I’ll work with you to help you create something even better than merely fitting into a market. You will create something that is missing in the market. You’ll be the one to determine how far you want to go and take your project. You’ll learn how to value yourself.
What was your personal project?
Pikaland is my personal project (and it’s still ongoing!) Through that personal project, I’ve started many others – the PikaPackage Project, The Good to Know zines series, Good to Eat Flickr page, Pikabooks, Camp Pikaland, and many other small collaborations with other artists. My top priority was never about the money (I didn’t make much from them!) It was about having fun, taking risks and learning a lot about illustration and entrepreneurship along the way. The blog was my personal self-study into the field of illustration; specifically illustrators who took business into their own hands. What I did gain – besides knowledge and insight – were readers and people who seemed interested in what I had to say.
And throughout the years (almost 10 years!), I’ve learnt many things along the way, and I’ve recognised patterns on what made them successful. The main thing they had in common was they started out by illustrating for others, as most illustrators do. But as they went along, they started to create for themselves, speaking up about subjects and themes that are dear to them. They’ve closed the loop by coming full circle. And one day, you will too.
The reason for the class is because I was doing the same thing so many years ago. It took me (and other people) a long time to get to where I am. You should be able to save some time by having the right person to guide you.
Hi there! My name is Amy Ng (pronounced nggh, like a quick breath out from the back of your throat). I’ve been writing and researching about the field of illustration for almost 10 years – documenting my findings and musings on the Pikaland blog along my journey as a self-taught artist. By articulating my discoveries on the blog, I’ve learned how to analyse illustrations for clarity and depth, researched artists, talked to them and tracked their progress; and identified patterns to see what worked (and what didn’t).
I put my ideas and hypothesis to the test by creating a syllabus for my students as an adjunct lecturer at a local art college. Since 2012, my focus is on guiding students to create immersive stories and products that stem from their personal experience and interests. These students of mine have since gone on to become creative entrepreneurs who are building their illustration business and empire – even before they graduate! My online classes and workshops are an extension of the syllabuses that I’m teaching offline, so that you too can benefit from it – no matter where you are in the world.
Who is this online workshop for?
Whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, this workshop will help to facilitate and guide you in putting your best foot forward. However, I find that it is especially helpful for shy artists – especially if you also identify with any one of the points below:
Who is this class not for?
Just like buying a membership to a gym won’t automatically get you a fitter body, please note that this workshop is not a quick fix – you’ll have to apply yourself in order to get the most out of it!
Not sure if the workshop is right for you? Try it out for 14 days.
Try the class out for 14 days. You’ll have access to the forum, the materials, and me – to decide if the class is for you. If you’re not happy with it, I’ll happily give you back your money in return for feedback. (If you like the class and have feedback to share, I’d be happy to hear that too!)Is this class right for you? Click here to read our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) list for more details. What’s it like working with Amy? Click here to read past students’ experiences in previous classes.
Class begins Monday, 12th November 2018