Headshot Tips

Read on for my top ten Headshot Tips to get amazing profile pictures

1. Simple Composition

Obvious one to start with, but make sure it’s just you in the picture and make it of your head! This also makes it clear that you have gone to some trouble and not just pulled something off your phone

2. Lighting Opportunities

You don’t need studio lighting! Use shaded natural light if can or at least avoid glaring ugly shadows from overhead lights – standing side on to a window works wonders

3. Backgrounds

Keep it either clean and simple (a plain wall) or in keeping with your profession if that can be easily achieved, but essentially don’t have unnecessary distraction in the pictures

4. Splash the Flash

A single studio light can make a huge difference (or just an off camera flash). High up and off centre to give the face some definition

5. Headshot Tips for Extra Lights

You can add lights to add subtle extras to your shots. Great to control shadow or to add a hair light and lift your subject off a dark background. We like well lit faces, but also want to add contour and depth

6. Expression

It never hurts to smile, but just make sure it is a natural pleasing smile and not something awkward and painful – be YOU

Smiling man in suit

7. Camera Position

The position of the camera says a lot and says it subtly. Low angle for a dominating portrait and progressively higher for increasing friendliness and warmth

8. The Right Lens

Different people, different faces. For the larger featured amongst us, go for a longer focal length (zoom in) and stand back from the camera. For the more diminutive, stand closer and zoom out, to accentuate

9. Positive Headshot Lighting

You can off course use a variety of lighting techniques to make different image styles, from sinister up-lighting to sympathetic clam shell (overhead with under chin bounce) or striking strong side lighting, if you want to stand out

10. Think it, be it

Your profile shot is often your first impression – Think how you want to look when you meet someone for the first time to give them the right impression – for this imagine you are looking at our customer not a camera lens

This is just a whistle stop top tip tour. To find out more info on these points and more, then visit my website photohello.co.uk/blog/ where you can discover more including thoughts on the old colour vs. black and white debate.

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