As a Boston branding photographer for small businesses and entrepreneurs, I take a fair amount of headshots. Some of them are your classic blank backdrop headshots and others are environmental portraits. Regardless of type, there are a various tips to help you look your best and ace your next headshot session.
Your headshot session is not the time to experiment with your hair or your makeup. You want a natural look that enhances your person without overwhelming. People with longer hair typically look best with it down versus pulled back which can look too severe in photographs.
Keep your backdrop in mind. If you’re having an environmental headshot taken, keep your outfit simple and the patterns at a minimum. For more traditional headshots with a white or black backdrop, a little pattern and color is ideal so that one doesn’t look washed out!
Neutrals, jewel tones, and muted colors are flattering on most skin types. While some people are able to pull off more vibrant colors, it’s best to stay away from neons. White and black are also best to avoid if you’re being photographed in front of that color backdrop. For outdoor portraits, keep the season in mind. In the Summer, avoid excessive green. For Autumn, it’s best to steer clear of browns.
When choosing outfits, layers and textures look great on camera. An example of simple layering could be a shirt with a sweater, jacket, vest over top. You can also add layers and depth with accessories like necklaces and belts. I would stay away from scarves that block the neck and chest. Textures refers to cable-knits, lace, jean, linens, and other textural fabrics.
What is the goal of your brand? Are you stylish yet approachable? Professional and sleek? Casual and fun? Choose outfits and your style of headshot (environmental vs. traditional) based on your brand. If you’re looking to appear trendy and market to Millenials, keep an eye on sites like Pantone to keep up with color trends.
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