10 Tips To Take Great Headshots In Chicago

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Tips To Take Great Headshots Chicago

Headshots are usually used in resumes, professional websites, and social media sites such as LinkedIn. A photo can affect people’s perception of anyone or anything; thus, headshots are crucial to one’s career or business. For instance, before a client or investor decides to meet up with someone physically, they might want to see a headshot first to give them an idea of what that person looks like. Consider it as some sort of an initial assessment in which no one doesn’t want to fail.

As a headshot photographer, you need to make sure that the final output is something that complements your client’s profession or the kind of industry they are in. Their headshots are their first means of communication with their audience; thus, you should be able to show off their best angles so they can convey a sense of professionalism and trustworthiness.

The following are just some tips to nail that headshot:

1. Choose the right style.

There should be a conversation between you and your client before taking their headshot.

Even the best Chicago headshot photographer should be informed where the images will be used so that they could apply appropriate styles and techniques. It’s also important that you’re aware of the nature of your client’s career to help you visualize and plan for the finer points of the headshot. For example, someone in the corporate world would be better off with a photo against a white background. In contrast, a yoga instructor can get away with a more colorful background, ideally something that is set against nature.

Choosing the right clothes (and colors) is also important for a stellar headshot. First and foremost, it is best only to use neutral colors. If the headshot will be used for business purposes, it would be apt to use work clothes. Make sure the client brings a jacket or coat with them on the day of the shoot in order to make their headshot more professional-looking. Also, the clothes must be crease-free and ironed well so they would appear neat in the photo.

2. Give space between your subject and the background.

Don’t let your subject stand too close to the background. If you are using a studio or an office background, there are bound to be some shadows on the wall if you position someone too close to it, producing headshots that will look less professional. For headshots done outdoors, there should still be a separation between the subject and background. Use the bokeh feature of a camera to create a nondescript background and to help sharpen the image of the subject.

3. Melt the tension away.

You don’t want your subject to look stiff and ultra-serious during the whole process; thus, it is a good move to melt any form of tension away before starting with the shoot. An excellent way to break the ice is to have a little chat with your subject, such as asking them about their favorite things in life. Another effective way of doing it is to have your subject do some silly faces in front of the camera, so when it’s time to take serious headshots, your client will be all smiles and relaxed as they pose for you.

4. Position the lights accordingly.

For corporate headshots, lighting should be even and bright, and the subject should be evenly lit. A beauty lighting setup–one light above or a second light or reflector filling from below–also works well. Furthermore, the body of the subject should be turned 45 degrees away from the camera and face towards the light source. Also, you have to guide them to look straight to the lens since there is a tendency for people to look somewhere else just as the camera flashes.

5. Direct them.

Direct your clients properly so they would know where and how to position their bodies. Make sure you capture them in their most flattering angle; otherwise, you’ll end up with a headshot that doesn’t show the best look of your client, about which both parties will not be pleased.

10 Tips To Take Great Headshots In Chicago

6. Make little adjustments.

Make your headshots a cut above the rest by implementing little but significant adjustments. For example, ask your clients to tilt their head or lean forward if you think it will make them look better. You can also ask them to smile; a gentle but intriguing smile can make all the difference. Don’t be afraid to ask your subjects to change their position or expression to help both of you get the image you are looking for.

7. Keep chatting and be positive.

Talk to your subject during the shoot. You have to keep them energetic and motivated throughout the whole process. Give them reassurance every step of the way. Never express negative feelings towards the subject; instead, keep adjusting your equipment or your subject’s pose if you are not satisfied with the shots you are getting. Keeping them motivated means they will have your cooperation throughout the shoot, which is something you need in order to get that perfect shot.

8. Focus on the eyes

The eyes are the most expressive parts of the face; they are not considered the windows of the soul for nothing. With that being said, you should be able to capture your subject’s eyes and make sure that you get a sharp, crisp color of them. The eyes should stand out since they are one of the main identifying features of a person’s face. Moreover, the eyes of the subject should convey a personality.

9. Angles matter.

Close up shots are massively affected by angles. The angle you employ will affect the overall look and feel of the final photograph. For women, you can make their eyes appear larger, and their faces gentler by shooting from above them. For men, you can emphasize their facial strengths by shooting slightly up.

10.  The type of lens matters, too.

The type of lens matters in headshots. The wrong lens can cause distortions in a photograph. Avoid using wide-angle ones for close-up headshots;  instead, use a lens that will thin down your subject’s face. A lens that is 90mm or above is good for this. Using a wide-angle camera is only good for certain shots and not for headshots where you need to capture your clients in their best possible angle.

Final Thoughts

Headshots are a crucial factor for the success of one’s business or career. Therefore, as a headshot photographer, make sure to employ only the most appropriate styles and techniques. The perfect lighting and the right type of lens could help you create stunning headshots. Capturing your subjects in their best angles is vital, too. Also, it’s of the essence to make your clients feel comfortable during the shoot by being warm, friendly, and positive towards them.

A woman looks straight into the camera while getting her Headshots Chicago done.



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