How to Prepare for your Photo Shoot
Your headshot is a powerful marketing tool that is often the first thing a client sees. Once you have decided on the look and feel of your headshot now it’s time to prep for the occasion. Every headshot client I get asks me how they should prepare for the shoot, so I thought I’d put forward my best tips on how to get photo-ready, for a shoot with me or anyone else.
- Dress as if you were going to a job interview or present yourself in the same professional manner as you would when seeing clients. If you’re the casual type, then go casual, but still wear flattering styles and fabrics.
- Don’t wear any crazy patterns or designs, these will distract from the main attraction, your face.
- Simple clothing tends to photograph better. Scoop-necks, v-necks and collared shirts shoot well. Anything that is too complex or finicky usually needs adjusting and can ruin a shot. If you fall into the corporate category, your marketing department can decide if they want ties and suits or not.
- Wear colours that enhance your skin tone.
- Choose something you feel comfortable in and love. If you feel awkward in your clothes, it will show in the photos. Better to choose clothing with a pattern that you love, than something plain that you don’t.
If you are more casual or have a non-corporate position, wear what is appropriate for your audience!
- As a general rule, more makeup than usual is better. However consider how much you would normally wear. If you don’t wear much makeup, you may want to apply a bit of light blush and mascara so your natural features show up better in the photos. If you usually wear makeup, you may want to wear a bit more pronounced eye makeup. Put on a bit more than you would in your daily life and your photos will end up looking like you do in-person.
- It is recommended that you bring some lipstick or gloss to your photo shoot, even if it is just a tinted chapstick.
- Men may want to consider a bit of foundation to smooth out skin tone.
- Please leave the distracting jewelry at home. Even if it is a beautiful necklace or earrings, you don’t want the first thing people notice about your image to be your accessories. Simple and subtle is more effective.
- Make sure if wearing a pendant necklace you have it centered in the shot. Your photographer should also be watching for this (I call it “live photoshopping”).
- If you colour your hair, make sure to have your roots touched up before your picture is taken. There is only so much than can be fixed in post.
- Make sure your hair is neatly styled whether it is up or down. Depending on how nimble you are with styling your own hair, you may want to get it professionally done for your photos.
For those of you wanting to DIY it, here are some things to consider
- Soft diffused lighting works better than spotlights so you don’t have hard shadows on your face. Have your photographer stand at the window and face inwards to get natural window light. If shooting outside, overcast days produce better results than sunny days for the same reason.
- Shoot your photos from slightly above to get the most flattering angle. Stand or sit at a slight angle but still look at the camera directly. That said, you don’t always have to look at the camera.
- Make sure your picture is framed properly so you are the focal point.
- Try not to have a busy background that can distract from your face.
- Try laughing in the photo, and have the your friend shoot just after you laugh. I find people are the most relaxed after laughing and their natural warm expressions come out.
Good luck and let me know how it goes! Let me know if you found any of these tips useful 🙂