The top 9 tips you can do to prepare for your headshot photography session. After twenty plus years of photographing people,
there are some basic things you can do to make your session go smoothly.
- It may sound simple (and obvious) but get some SLEEP! Go to bed at a reasonable time the night before your session. You don’t want to feel and look tired on the day of your session.
- Drink plenty of water the night before, hydrating your skin is important, it will help with puffy eyes and give you a glow.
- Have your shirt/dress professionally pressed and bring it with you to put on right before your session. You would be amazed at how many wrinkled shirts I’ve seen! I also suggest bringing a backup if you wear the shirt to your session. If you spilled your morning Starbucks on your shirt..game over!
- Keep in line with your profession. Are you an artist or a banker? What do you want to portray about yourself? Your headshot is the first thing a client or potential recruiter will see so be sure keep in line with what you want to portray about yourself. A coat and tie tells people you are a professional in the business world. But let’s say you are a trying to show a kinder side of yourself and look friendly and inviting. A red tie might be intimidating, so a soft blue tie would be more appropriate. Is your company portrayed as more hands on-get down to business and you wear casual shirts instead of ties? A dress shirt without a tie is certainly appropriate. Women can use the same line of thinking. Think about what you want to say about who you are and this will guide you to making a great decision on your wardrobe. I recommend NOT wearing turtlenecks or scarves, they cut the person off and shorten them making them looked cramped. The most important part of what you choose is to be comfortable and confident feeling.
- Your clothing should be simple. As a general rule, I tell clients to wear jewel tones for women and medium tone suits for men with simple white or blue shirts. In both cases I suggest avoiding busy prints or anything distracting.
- Jewelry should be kept simple and clean
- I always suggest getting your makeup done professionally. We usually book a makeup artist to come in and do touchups on the men (yes, they need makeup too!) A good makeup artist will even out redness from shaving, reduce shine and keep the look over all professional and polished. We do retouching afterwards but I come from a history of film where my motto is “lets do it right first” and not rely on post production. Professional makeup artist Beke Beau recommends the following:
- “come with your make-up on. Avoid using any eye shadows, blushes or highlighters that have shimmer, frost or sparkle. The stylist will make sure your skin tone is even and shine-free, and that you have sufficient color on eyes, cheeks and lips to look best in the photo.”
If you opt out of having your makeup done professionally, a translucent powder over moisturized (lightly) skin will help give you a non-glaring , flawless look. You also need to add a little more blush and color than you might usually do since photography lights will tend to wash out a lot of the color.
- Bring a toothbrush! As a rule, I always do a little whitening of the teeth in photoshop but getting out small particles between the teeth are very difficult. It also looks much better to have freshly brushed , shiny teeth.
- RELAX! Preparing for your headshot photography session is simple. You have done the right thing by hiring a professional to do your headshot. A good photographer will have a conversation with you about your goals and assess what makes sense for your “look” taking into consideration your profession, goals, budget and personality.
A great example of corporate headshots. The woman is dressed simple yet classic. The man is wearing a red power tie, a great choice to show authority.
Kelli Wilke is a photographer based in Wilmington DE serving the Philadelphia and surrounding markets as well as Maryland and DC. To inquiry about corporate headshots click here.