Let’s face it, being in front of the camera is almost no-one’s idea of a good time! However headshots and branding portraits are an inescapable aspect of running any business. As a professional photographer, my goal is to help you feel comfortable in front of the camera, and to guide you with poses so that we capture the best images possible. Continue reading for some helpful tips to help you prepare for our photoshoot!

As a professional, your headshots and branding images are your face to your clients, potential employers, or your target market. It’s important that we “get it right” and capture great images for you! Depending on your industry, headshots don’t necessarily have to be too formal or stuffy – often showing some personality is a great way to connect with your audience! So let’s discuss a few helpful tips to help you get the most out of our photoshoot!

1. Relax!

Most photographers aren’t using film anymore, so don’t worry about blinking or “ruining” a photo. It doesn’t matter! The delete button is very easy to press. As photographers, our job is to help you create the best possible images by helping you relax, making you laugh, and helping guide you with poses. You don’t need to have any prior experience in front of the camera for us to create great photos for you!

2. Make Up and Professional Styling

Many people opt to do their own hair and make up for a headshot session, however hiring a professional helps to create a more polished look for your images. We are happy to suggest hair and make up professionals. If you prefer to take care of your own, we recommend applying more make up than you normally would, as studio lighting even on the lowest setting tends to wash out pigment and make it seem as though you’re wearing far less make up than you applied. Drugstore brand make up often lacks adequate pigment for professional photography purposes, so if you are able, we recommend using higher quality make up that can be found at companies like MAC and Sephora. Don’t forget to bring translucent powder to the studio as well in case of shine (this is a great tip for those who don’t wear make up as well).

3. Wardrobe – Solid Colours and Neutrals are Best

We normally recommend wearing solid colours to a headshot session, as busy patterns can be distracting when creating a headshot that should focus on that lovely face of yours.  Patterns such as plaid, fine dots, and very fine stripes (such as seersucker) also tend to cause an unsightly effect called “moiré” in photos, so they are best avoided.  If you’d like to wear a blazer or suit jacket, take a closer look and do avoid one with fine stripes or patterns.  Here’s what moiré looks like – it’s pretty harsh on the eyes, isn’t it?

The “moiré” effect. Unfortunately there is not much that can be done in photoshop to correct this; your best bet is avoiding fine stripes and repeating patterns.

Speaking of Wardrobe…

Take a close look at the clothes you intend to wear or bring to change into at the studio. Are they wrinkly? If so, please press or steam your clothes prior to our session. While we do have a steamer on site and are happy to fire it up, it’s a great timesaver to do this prior to your arrival such that doing so on-site doesn’t cut into your photography time. We can perform quite a bit of magic in Photoshop but clothing wrinkles can be extremely difficult to correct.

4. Have Fun with It!

The greater the variety of photos we capture, the more for you to choose from for retouching! So let’s have some fun with it! It’s okay to try out poses that you think may work – even if they don’t. The more variety you try, the more you’ll have to choose from in your gallery after our session. And again, as photographers, our job is to help guide you along the way!

5. Consider Your Target Audience

Are you a professional in finance handling millions in client portfolios, or a life coach connecting with clients on a personal level helping them overcome obstacles and achieve self-actualization? Your industry will lend itself to the types of images you’ll want to create. Also, there’s nothing wrong with bucking the trend in your industry and setting yourself apart with your photos. Ultimately, it’s all about how you want to be perceived by your target audience. If you’re not sure of the direction you should take, we’re here to help!

If you’d like to chat about your headshots or branding images, send us an email and we would be happy to discuss!

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