Your media profile: How to take the perfect headshot
A business headshot is comprised of a formal presentation of your head and shoulders, designed to reflect a good representation of a person’s professional image. A headshot is like a visual business card – providing a first impression of you to your clients, recruiters and prospective partners. You can use a headshot for business profiles on platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook or Instagram – as well as in articles, both online and in printed media.
If you are thinking about updating your photos, here are a few quick tips so you are better prepared when you book a session with a professional photographer in a studio. 📸
It is important to note that there are a few key aspects that depend entirely on you and not the photographer.
A beautiful, professional image is not simply achieved with the use of an expensive camera and photographic technique, but with a combination of elements like poses, choice of colour, choice of makeup and clothing.
An experienced photographer will guide you through the session and will provide directions until he can capture your most flattering angles. In addition to this, there are a few tricks you can learn in advance and help you appear more relaxed and natural on camera.
1. Relax 🍃
Start by stretching your arms out wide and taking a few deep breaths. Make sure that your shoulders and arms stay relaxed. Sometimes, jumping up and down for a few seconds can help with this.
2. Avoid a "straight to the camera" body positioning
The idea we want here is to form angles. Try not to face the camera with your shoulders directly squared to its lens. Play around with shifting your weight from one foot to another, and lean in – this should be subtle and slight. Avoid fully facing the camera.
3. Awareness of chin and eyes 😁
To project a stronger image of confidence, your jawline and eyes play a very important role. Aim to "turtle" out your chin towards the camera whilst you pull your shoulders slightly back. This stretches out your throat and hides the possibility of multiple chins in the photo. People will connect you with your eyes first, so don't forget to "smile" with your eyes!
Avoid the use of prints, checked or striped patterns as they distract and date your photos. Choose clothing and tops that are plain and in solid colours such as light blue, burgundy, green and grey. These mid-tones are naturally flattering to your skin. Clothing in black and white is not ideal, because they can complicate the camera's exposure and the studio backdrop. Instead, go for neutrals - like navy or dark green. If you want to accentuate your eyes, pick a top with the same colour.
Think classic. For men, a plain suit in dark colours such as grey or navy blue, paired with a shirt in dark or light blue always looks professional. If you are not wearing a tie, opt for wearing a jacket with a casual shirt. Women should ideally wear a classic office-wear outfit. Try to avoid bold colours - however, little pops of colour here and there may work well. Also, try to steer clear of short sleeves. They can look unprofessional, and the shape can also detract attention from the face. For jewellery, anything subtle and classic is a must.
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Andrei Koscina is a London-based photographer specialised in corporate photography, and works for entrepreneurs in different industries who are looking to improve their personal branding. He has been working for 2 years in partnership with HIGH PROFILE CLUB, covering their events and photographing their members. www.andreikoscina.co.uk