A professional head shot is an important tool for your career and business. This image is often the first impression someone has of you. These portraits are essential for business cards, websites, social networking sites such as Linked In, press releases, company brochures and newsletters.
A Good Head Shot
~Requires a good night sleep the night before
~Shows a confident yet approachable you
~Depicts you in a relaxed and natural state
~Is a portrait you are proud to show off
A Bad Head Shot
~ Looks like you have spent hours getting ready for a glamour shot rather than
a natural looking you.
~Is a picture taken with a cell phone and cropped down.
~A picture edited to take 10 years off you. You want to look like a well rested,
smartly dressed and happy you.
Tips For Getting Ready
1. Clothes and Jewelry
Classic attire is best so that your photo does not look dated. Wear clothing that is multi-seasonal. Mid-tones in solid, neutral colors photograph well, veer away from solid black or white. Choose colors that compliment your skin tone, eyes and hair color. Dress for Your Job. You should appear in the picture the same way you look when someone meets you at work.
If you have light skin, do not wear pastel colors as they will make your skin tone looked washed out. The opposite is true for dark skin. Don’t wear colors that are too dark. Keep patterns and textures to a minimum as they can become distracting. Your face should be the focus! No matter what you choose to wear, make sure that you are comfortable! Minimizing jewelry is best unless you are going for an artsy look.
Men should wear a well-tailored suit or shirt. Think classic. Pick your favorite suit that fits you well, preferably one that doesn’t bunch up when you button it or sit down. If you choose not to wear a jacket, a long sleeve shirt is best. Clothing with tight grids or a small herringbone pattern can have a moiré pattern effect on camera, so stay away from grid-like patterns. Thin stripes are okay. Ties look best when their tone lands between the suit and the shirt. Some ties are too shiny so try to stay away from really reflective, shiny silk ties. Bring a second tie for a different look!
Women should wear a tailored suit or fitted blouse. Long sleeves are better than short sleeves in a professional photo shoot. Don’t choose anything with bold, distracting patterns or colors. Clothing with tight grids or a small herringbone pattern can have a moiré pattern effect on camera, so stay away from grid-like patterns. Thin stripes are okay. Avoid trendy clothes. For women who want to wear a necklace, a short necklace that mimics the neckline tends to look best.
2. Hair and Makeup
Don’t cut or dye your hair right before the shoot. Freshly colored hair can look too vibrant and unnatural on camera drawing more attention to your hair than your face. If you are considering cutting your hair try to do it about four days before your photo shoot so that your hair has time to settle. Avoid drastic changes in style before your photo shoot. Don’t go to the tanning booth or lay in the sun the day before as it tends to give your skin a reddish hue.
Men: If you have a beard, trim it evenly so it’s nicely groomed. If you’re going clean-shaven, get a good shave that morning. The best rule of thumb for facial hair is to commit to your look, either a beard, mustache, or nothing at all. Anything scruffy or stubbly in between is not advisable. Darker colored beards tend to be accentuated in photos. Trim it well so it’s not too thick.
Ladies: If you don’t normally wear makeup use a minimum of foundation to even out your skin tone. Consider using just a little eye shadow, eye liner, mascara and lipstick at least a shade or two darker than your skin/lip tone. This brings your features out in a subtle manner. Avoid eye shadows or lip gloss in metallic shades or containing glitter. Too much shine is distracting on camera and looks wet. For women who normally wear makeup, apply as you would for a nice evening out so that it is a little darker than day wear, but not overly done.
Depending on the mood and tone you want to set for your photo dictates the type of background you want to select. Solid colors or neutral colored textured backgrounds are a classic choice. You could also choose to have you picture taken in your office or at a location that represents your business. If you would like to project a more natural tone you might want to select a park or a natural setting as the backdrop for your head shot. White and black backdrops are also popular choices, but take into account where you will be using the image, as a white backdrop on a white business card or web page will make the head appear to float on the page.
We will help guide you to get your best look, so be ready to pose! Typically we will ask you to turn your body a quarter turn away from the camera, then gently turn your shoulders and head back towards the lens. This pose avoids the straight-on mug-shot look. You will need to have good posture but not look like you are doing a military stance. A good way to think of it is to imagine someone gently pulling you up by the top of your head. This will raise your shoulders and back in a more natural way. Also, leaning forward slightly from the waist will elongate your neck and convey a welcoming look. Look at the camera the way you would want to greet your best client or customer!
5. Rest and Relax
Make sure to get plenty of rest before your photo shoot. Come for the shoot refreshed and unhurried. Take time to make this a great photo. We will take plenty of photos for you to choose from so take your time to relax and be prepared to do varying angles so that we can capture you at your best!
A general retouch of your chosen image is included, but make sure to let us know if there is anything specific you would like altered. You want the photo to look like you had a great night sleep, great makeup and a perfect hair day but not like you look 20 years younger. We can enhance those details by reducing dark circles, fine lines, removing skin blemishes, and removing stray hairs. We want you to look like the sharpest You!
7. Image Release and Number of Poses
We will provide an image release form for your pictures. Many photographers charge extra for the release of your files. We include this in your session fee. Consider purchasing 2 to 3 poses, it will give you an edge to have slightly different images for distinct uses. For example, you may want to use one image on your website and social networking site and a different one for your business card.
You want to have you best natural smile on hand. Not the forced one someone would have while saying “CHEESE”, but the one you would have when you are thinking of something pleasant or happy in your life. Even professionals with the most serious jobs should smile. After all, you wouldn’t approach someone you are trying to make a good impression on with a frown, would you? SMILE!