6 Tips for Mastering Headshot Photography

6 Tips for Mastering Headshot Photography

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Headshot photography has been gaining popularity for some time. Earlier for being in demand from corporate houses for headshot photography for their executives, today it has extended its reach and almost everyone seem to be wanting to get their specialized headshots taken. 

What is a Headshot?

Headshots are images that have face as focus area. As per Wikipedia: “A head shot or headshot is a modern (usually digital) portrait in which the focus is on the person. The term is applied usually for professional profile images on social media, images used on online dating profiles, the 'about us page' or a corporate website and promotional pictures of actors, models and authors.”

Though it may sound simple because it gives a feeling that you have to manage only the face in the image but it requires some deep understanding and technique to create evocative and specialized headshots.

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Headshots v/s Portraits

Though headshots broadly can be called portraits but there is a clear demarcation. While a portrait may have face as a focus area but in portrait it is not a strict requirement. In Headshots, you focus ONLY ON FACE. Headshots mostly include only head and shoulders. Usually props are missing and backgrounds are also non distracting.

Here are 5 Tips to create that perfect headshot:

  1. Focus on the Eyes

Well this may sound a simple and clichéd tip but is very important. Most people miss this important part itself and their images never work. The eyes are window to the soul, so achieving eyes in sharp focus, means your 50% work is already done. Crisp and sharp eyes will establish a strong connection and will draw the viewer into the photo.

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  1. Get Creative with Head turn

When shooting non corporate headshots, you can get creative with head turn and overall look. Straight on head shot may be great for a corporate look but a head turn adds a different dimension to the same head shot.

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  1. Use Soft Light

When you shoot up close to highlight the face, facial skin tends to stand out. Using diffused soft light will help you avoid capturing too much details on the skins. Using a parabolic soft box or octa will help you wrap the light around face. This will help you focus on the lines of face without highlighting those scars or blemishes.

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  1. Make them Sit

If you are confused whether you should ask them to sit or stand while posing for a headshot, then realize one fact that most people are always comfortable when they are sitting. Make them sit and pose for the headshot and chances are high that they will be more comfortable resulting in a great headshot for you.

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  1. Make them Smile

They say smile increases their face value. Though a formal corporate headshot may require a non-smiling face but if you are shooting a non-corporate head shot, a smiling face will work better. 

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  1. Go Outdoors

Most people associate a head shot with studio shot but you can experiment with outdoor locations as well. While shooting outdoors you must ensure few important points:

  • Keep the light soft. You may have to use a fill flash or a reflector for the same.
  • Blur the background because distractions will never work with head shots

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We do hope you found these tips useful. Headshot photography is very popular and can earn you some handsome money as well.