Are Headshots Important?
Yes, headshots are important in todays fast paced digital world. Before the social media platforms everyone would have a business card to hand out. Today, people are researching your digital identity before even meeting you. Whether its an employer, or a new client they want to know who they are dealing with. Not having a high-end headshot could make or break you when vying for that new job or trying to land that big client. Matthew Hamilton quotes “ Headshots are more important than ever. They are your persona logo. “
Take the time to get a headshot that brings out your approachability and wants people to work with you. Having a headshot photographer that specializes in facial expressions will bring you to the front of the crowd and have people notice you.
Even in the dating world a proper image will help you get noticed, so as before if you are a business professional, a student, an actor you need to get the headshot to get you noticed. So, yes a headshot is important, but as I described not a headshot that is a selfie, you need one that will bring out your expressions and who you are.
Having a headshot that is properly lit, proper retouching and the perfect expression will help you get in front of the crowd.
Why have professional headshots
You are wondering whether to get a professional headshot, well, you bet you do! Your first impression matters a lot, especially when everyone’s lives are surrounded by social media profiles. Your headshot is your virtual business card and helps you be identified in the digital world that we live in. Your headshot is your PERSONAL brand you should pay attention to it so that everyone is aware that you are around.
The profile picture is the identity that people will judge you on. It is an essential marketing tool that you have to use efficiently. This give you more importance to the first impression more than anything else. So, whether your headshot is to connect with potential employers, clients on Linkedin or peers, be prepared to be judged by your profile image. Remember, we live in a digital age and taking a selfie or an image from someone’s gathering or your clean-cut passport image, these just won’t work today because it’s not who you are. You need to be more focused on yourself to the world digitally. Mike Schacht quotes “A great professional headshot is he fastest way to earn a clients trust.”
There are a number of reasons to get your professional images done and one of the key points is that any industry is about first impressions. You have about 3-5 seconds to make that first impression and if you don’t you will go to the bottom of the pile. A professional headshot that has the right expression and is approachable will keep you on top of the pile in any scenario.
What to wear for your headshot
When you get your headshot, whether its your first or getting an updated one you need to dress by avoiding bold prints. The focus needs to be on you and not the clothing you are wearing. Avoid drawing attention to the clothing by wearing bold prints. When in doubt solid muted tones work the best, grey or black. If you have a color that you look great in bring it, Red is the only color I feel most people have a hard time pulling off.
Another tip is to opt for a tailored look. You want to look your best and everyone wants to look thin in their headshot, the easiest way to look bigger than you actually are is to wear a jacket that does not fit right or has shoulder pads, please avoid this.
You need to look the part for your headshot, if you don’t wear a tie at work then ditch it, if you wear a suit to work then bring it. Lets’ get you a couple different looks so your headshot stands out and you can have some variety for your social platforms and website. Karaminder Ghuman quotes “Looking the part will bring you to the front of the crowd, you need to look like you”
One question that always arises is the wearing of jewelry when having your headshot done. The rule of thumb is to keep it to a minimum and nothing distracting. For earrings wear studs and if a necklace wear something like a pearl necklace and short so it doesn’t interest with the neckline of your top.
The best thing is to be you! We are trying to capture who you are and don’t want to show someone who you are not. Always ask questions if you need some guidance, I am here to assist you to get the best image for you.
How Do I Choose A Headshot Photographer?
There are many choices to selecting a headshot photographer and seeing the images produce isn’t as important as liking the actual photographer. If there is tension or you don’t jive with the photographer it will show in the images, you will not be able to be yourself and relax and have fun. You are trusting the photographer to capture the best images for your marketing tool, and if its’ not right the end result will be poor. You have a limited time to get the images you need, so you need to ask questions and have a conversation on the phone with them so you understand the environment. Ask questions, that will be your best key to success, get a feel how the photographer works, how they direct their clients. These little questions are HUGE and will result in great images and just feeling comfortable and will bring out the best in you. Scott Lerner quotes “Your image can be either good or great depending on who you select to get your headshots done by. Make the right choice to help you get ahead of others”
So, in closing, selecting the headshot photographer can move your image from good to great! Don’t just look at the images you see, make sure you ask many questions as I stated above. Once you select the headshot photographer have fun, let them guide you to get the best images you have ever had.
What Is The Difference Between Headshots and Portraits?
A big difference between the two is that headshots focus on the face and approachability which portraits do show the face but focus on the whole person normally. Getting the viewer to focus on the face is what a successful headshot accomplishes. Lighting, the minute expressions, the eyes in how they look draw the view to the face. Yes a headshot is a portrait but a very specific style of headshot.
We have the headshot cropped in tight to focus to on the eye contact and the expression that conveys approachability, confidence and trust. The shot is done in such a way that it exudes confidence and the subject is an expert in their business. It’s a portrayal of the subject being the best they can be. I said the headshot is a type of portrait, which is true. However, the portraits are more focused on artistic visualization of the photographer and in different environments. Lighting is set to reflect the mood of the subject, colors are introduced to bring feeling to the images. The headshot is a real image that shows who the person is.
Look at most company websites and annual reports, you see the images focused on the face due to the restricted size they have to show the images. Linkedin is the same, you have a small size to upload so a portrait would not work in these situations. You need a very specific image for this and where headshot shine!
Yes, you can use portraits for different uses, look at some annual reports, they use more than just the headshots you may see the CEO in a conference room looking out over the city. These are just examples of different types of portraits.
Which is right for you? Both have very different uses, but as Scott Lerner, an Orlando photographer said, “They both accomplish the end goal for the client, they tell a certain story in the image.” They both can be used in tandem depending on the needs of the client and will have the best results in the end as everyone understands the end goal.
Get ready for your headshot session
Having a successful headshot depends on preparing properly:
My goal is to make your headshot a simple process, but there are some things that will help the session go very smooth and to achieve that confident look we are striving for. Practice makes perfect they say, please do this in the mirror and just look at how your face reacts to different scenarios.
The night before your session get a good night sleep, we don’t want you to look tired in your headshots. The day before drink plenty of water and stay hydrated, this will help you look better, and hydrate your skin. We want to not have dry skin the day of your headshot. As Charlie Abrahams states’ “Having well hydrated skin and body will make your headshots come out better, and you will feel better about your session” Men if you shave in the morning please use a balm after, this will help any nicks with the razor and you won’t have the burned look. The best thing is to come ready to have fun, this isn’t your run of the mill photoshoot.
Here is a list of some general suggestions for your session:
- Solid colors or very conservative patterns
- Generally, don’t go with overly bright colors, they will compete for attention.
- Undershirts, camisoles, and bras should match the tone of the shirt or blouse you wear.
- All collars should be in great condition, and your shirts pressed when applicable.
- Men’s ties should not be so attention grabbing that they compete with you.
- If you bring a jacket, make sure it fits properly.
- I recommend if you wear jewelry, stud earrings only.
- Makeup, with a natural look is recommended for women.
- Light eye makeup
- No false eye lashes
- Neutral or light lip color
- No makeup for men, I have product to reduce the shine.
Hair and skin:
- Clean hair
- Moisturize skin as needed (especially in winter)
- If you wear glasses, bring every pair you own
Please contact me if you have any questions.
Do you need a professional headshot for Linkedin?
Every day I am asked, “Do I need a professional headshot for Linkedin?” The answer is Yes! When you go onto Linkedin do you look at profiles with no pictures or a selfie? More and likely the answer is no. I know I will skip profiles without a professional image. You may have a killer resume, but people want to know who you are.
In today’s digital world more and more employers are checking out social media to see who you are before they call you for an interview. When you have a professional headshot on your profile you are more and likely to be viewed over one without a profile image. On Linkedin you are going to get more responses and conversations from recruiters and employers if you have your professional headshot, then without one. Bryan Engel a headshot photographer out of California says “A professional headshot is a way to communicate who you are along with your resume. It will reflect professionalism and that you are serious in your industry”
What does your current headshot say about you? Does it say you are confident, approachable or trustworthy? Do you trust your current image to do this? You probably spent good money on having your resume done, don’t have a subpar image on your Linkedin profile, this will just put you at the bottom of the pile if your image does not look approachable.
When you have a headshot with me, I create the looks you need, I will provide you the best headshot image you can get. I coach you to bring out the trustworthiness, the approachability and the necessary confidence to put you ahead of the pack. With the proper guidance and coaching I will be able to bring out the authority you are in your field. At the end of the day your headshot and resume will go together very well.