Why is a professional headshot important?
This is a legitimate question, and most professionals and aspiring actors / models understand the need for a professional headshot. With today’s advanced cell phone camera technology, they produce a fair product! It’s fine for a social media snap or snapshot of a casual outing. For updating a professional resume or marketing materials, company website and social media, you need a professional headshot. Why is a professional headshot important? Effort put into what you do.
-Why is a professional headshot important? Effort and accountability. A similar concept to going to a job interview or a date dressed appropriately. Having a sloppy appearance says “I don’t really care”. It’s as much about the effort as it is having a nicely lit and properly composed photograph that represents you. Not only as a professional, but a person as well. A professional headshot photographer knows how to light and compose for each unique subject and make it flattering. Here are a couple gentlemen who came for headshots for their updated company directory and website. This company is a property development management group, ironically right in my neighborhood!
If they did selfies and called it good enough, how would that look to clients paying top dollar for their services? In the grand scheme of things, headshots aren’t terribly expensive and they represent the individual well if done properly.
This aspiring actor also has to invest, with no guarantee of successful signing of an agency or bookings. But by getting headshots, it shows he’s willing to invest in himself and is serious. For the most part, people aren’t willing to invest in others who don’t invest in themselves. Kindof a catch 22. I know I’d be hesitant to hire a professional of any kind who did a cell phone snapshot as part of their branding. I’d rather see no photo than that. Maybe because I’m a photographer and am sensitive to that, but my first thought is wondering what corners they’d cut while doing work for me.
Though I fancy myself as a documentary photographer, I do enjoy doing lifestyle photography and headshots for different walks of life. It brings out their character for the intended purpose. Also I find it rewarding to meet different people in different careers and lifestyles, and give them the tools to help them in their careers. Often their need for a headshot comes last minute. They have an audition tomorrow or later this week. They are applying for a new job or new position and just found out they need a headshot, like now. Or for the freelance marketing person who wants a casual but professional looking portrait of themselves for social media and their website. It feels good to be able to help them, we understand life happens.
Mary, Midwife’s assistant- headshots for different walks of life
A couple different moods to show she can look professional, but still casual enough for women giving birth to feel comfortable with. It’s a great position of trust and comfort. Mary has to look caring, approachable, and nurturing as well as professional. Her job requires having a very personal connection with her clients, so it will be a different feel from the standard business headshot.
It’s all about that camera presence and the ability to shine on camera. Slightly more dramatic lighting was a nice feature for him and what he needed.
Sure, beauty never hurts! In her position, people are trusting her with their finances and personal / financial security. Having a trustworthy, friendly, approachable, and professional image is important here. Confidence without arrogance.
Cameron-freelance business and marketing consultant –
This brings out soul and character. Meet me at the coffee shop and let’s talk. Good for website bio and social media. This can help attract clients who want a freelancer instead of a more corporate figure. These are some recent characters who visited my studio for headshots. Will you be next?
Being a character is all about the face, let me capture yours at it’s best! Business / corporate headshots as well as model / actor and commercial headshots offered. Fast turnaround and tasteful retouching. Take a look at my Nashville Headshot Photography portfolio.
Photoshop is a wonderful tool that can take care of lots of different details that can help add polish to a photograph. How Photoshop is used, and to what extent will vary with each artist / photographer. The type of Photoshop training and knowledge I personally have is to repair flaws on people and do some re-proportioning if needed…..not to manipulate backgrounds etc. I’m a photographer. That’s how I look at it…..knowing Photoshop is convenient and saves me time and money, but I do have a tier 2 retoucher for more involved jobs that my time is better suited doing other work, when she can do that type of work better and faster. But what I do myself is done well and neatly, and I don’t have to spend an excess amount of time behind the desk doing things this way.
Generally with clients, whether for weddings, headshots, portrait work etc. I do basic retouch, such as adjust contrast / curves and make sure color is perfect, do some repair under eyes, neck wrinkles, stray hairs, shirt wrinkles, etc. All the things that aren’t super time consuming to do, repairs are subtle to where people they know won’t ask who the hell that photograph is of, LOL….and it still makes a huge difference in the final product. Any image that is over retouched and over smoothed, for almost every purpose for any client, is useless! I mostly use the healing brush and clone tools, and liquify to fix teeth a little or re proportion some. But the changes I make are subtle enough to where people who see them every day find it believable. Oh and skin texture is intact, no smoothing or overdoing whiteness of eyes and teeth. When in a client market, it’s not about what the artist thinks is cool, it’s about providing an accurate but flattering portrait of your client, that flatters them. To me, Photoshop work should be clean and traces shouldn’t be left. How a professional should deliver to his / her clients in my opinion. The photo below, there is no actual Photoshop….first I have been this raw in a while, but I felt like doing more cleanup on him would take away his character which I know him for, and how other people know and recognize him. Just did a slight curves and highlights and shadow adjustment and a conversion process to black and white.