Maggie Rants [and Raves]

I Blame Pinterest

by Maggie Franklin | May 13, 2014 | Bookmark +

Clients like to copy the designs they see on other people’s nails. It’s been going on since the invention of nail art.

They used to come in and say, “My coworker got her nails done and they’re pink and black and kinda have these little feather things on them.” You know, like you should immediately know what that looks like.

I used to pull out a little pad of paper and a pen, draw a basic fingernail shape, and proceed to try to recreate the design based on the client’s description like some sort of forensic nail artist.

After a while, smart phones came into being and I started telling everyone to just take pictures of people’s nails if they could.


I have to deal with Pinterest.

It’s not that there aren’t a bajillion adorable photos of nail designs on Pinterest… Well, no, actually, I’m convinced there are only 2,349 unique pictures of nail designs on Pinterest — and a bajillion minus 2,349 re-pinned photos.

Instagram isn’t much better. I see the same thing over and over again. Either the actual SAME photo that gets passed around “pinned,” “shared,” “featured” — whatever you wanna call it — or I see “tribute” art of people who have decided to put their personal spin on a popular design.

What tires me is how many times clients come in with their screen-shot photo in hand for me to copy.

I get tired of copying someone else’s work. Where’s the art in that? Where’s the creative process?

At least most of my clients are happy to let me do “something like” their photo, but some people really want that design. Which is especially frustrating when it’s nail stamping (particularly if I don’t have that plate) or if it’s a nail wrap.

I miss the days when they just told me do whatever I wanted. Now I feel like a copy machine.

I guess it’s possible that my clients don’t actually SEE the same nail art reposted/pinned/shared a thousand times over, seeing as how they aren’t obsessively monitoring the progress of nail design throughout the world.

I wonder if they’d be less interested if they knew how truly un-original their designs were by the time they discover them?

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