As a Wedding Photographer in Athens GA I know the importance of professional headshots. A couple of weeks ago, Whitney from Whitewood Events asked if I could do some headshots for her and Elizabeth, her floral designer and associate planner. I was so excited she asked me and that she trusted me with such an important part of her brand. We met at Ashford Manor Bed and Breakfast and had so much fun I had to blog about it! Whitney and Elizabeth openly told me they were nervous and hated being in front of the camera. My first thought was, “WHY?! They were such beautiful girls.”.. and I already knew they would be photogenic! Truth is, none of us REALLY love being in front of the camera. We are our own worst critic. I could take a million amazing photographs – crisp, perfect light, perfect bokeh – and the subject still be unhappy. That is just the way it is. So how do I ensure my clients are comfortable and happy with their photos?
1. Have fun. A lot of times when we are first getting started my clients are a little uptight and nervous. Which is totally normal. As a photographer, it is my job to make them feel comfortable. I love to tell jokes and openly compliment them. Every single one of my clients are beautiful and they need to be told that. After a few minutes they are already feeling better and maybe, just maybe even enjoying it! If they are too posed, it does not look genuine. I want my subjects to be as genuine as possible in these images. This happens when my clients are having fun! For the client, do have fun. Remember you seriously can’t mess up. Trust your photographer and try to relax! Before your session, practice in the mirror. As vain as that sounds, it works!
2. Be YOU. Your head shots should represent you or your brand if you are a business owner. Your styling must be consistent with, and reflect, who you are and what you do. It is best to keep it natural look (your everyday look) with something a little extra. Wearing extra makeup for portraits is good – after all it shows up better in the camera. However, try to keep it simple and YOU! In headshots you want people to see how you normally look. You don’t want to do glamour shots from the ’90s ;)! It is important you work with your photographer to ensure they capture your stlye. Communicate to them what your goal is for the finished product.
3. Be Styled. Accessories are a wonderful asset to your portraits. Throwing on a statement necklace or some cute earrings will add the extra spunk to your portraits while still keeping it simple. Try to stay away from clothing that is busy. Sticking with solid colors or simplicity will help your headshots be usable for a longer period of time.
Above all, remember that you are beautiful and trust your photographer when they give you direction even it feels a little strange! 🙂
Here are just a few of my favorites from Whitney and Elizabeth’s headshots. They totally rocked their headshot session and are a perfect example for this blog post. Enjoy!