Living in a digital world, a headshot is your first impression. It makes people decide whether they want to know more about you. I don’t know about you, but one of the first places I go when visiting someone’s site is their “About Me” page to see if there is a photo.
Below are 3 tips for taking an awesome headshot:
1. Write down 3 words that describe how you want to brand yourself. Your clothes, the lighting, and the location should match these words.
2. Choose no more than 3 “looks.” Good branding does not have a wide range. People like consistency. Pick the best shirt/”anchor piece,” and then glam it up or down to create variety.
3. Communicate with your photographer and tell them what the photos are for. If you have a website, show them your website. A good photographer will help you create what you are looking for, taking into consideration light, location, and how to direct you.
Mark Groves is a relationship coach. He needed photos for his website and when he guest-writes articles. We took these photos in a span of 15 minutes.
Headshot #1 – Might be used if he’s talking about a subject that is more academic and serious. It says, Trust me, I know what I’m talking about. I’m not a big fan of this one though, because it can also possibly communicate, Hey, I’m kind of a douche-bag. (Mark is one of my best friends btw).
Headshot #2 – He looks authentically happy and approachable. We had him wear sky blue because the color brings out his eyes. The top buttons of his shirt were left unbuttoned to create a lighter feeling, as if to say, I’m easy going.
Headshot #3 – I put him in front of a wooden garage for a more rugged look (I got the idea looking at his scruff) but it doesn’t work well with his branding. Plus he looks a little creepy.
Headshot #4 – The GQ look. Good if he’s writing about something sex related, speaking at a men’s conference, or if he simply wants to get a date.
The headshot that we agreed would be THE headshot, is #2. It fits with his everyday personality, which is also how he brands himself.