Professional portrait shoots costs money. How important are good quality headshots? Do you need a professional photographer to take a good headshot? What are the benefits of hiring a professional portrait photographer to take your headshots?
The problem with selfies is that they look like selfies - they might be ok for your Instagram but if you are serious about your career whether you are a professional, talent or model you will need a professional headshot. People make first impressions of you and your personality from your profile picture even the ones you use on LinkedIn or Facebook and it takes less than one second. If you go for a job interview (or casting if you are a talent) I imagine you make sure you look your best so why we don’t take as much care when presenting our image online? In case you were not aware of this, many recruitment agents and companies will research you online before they even decide to invite you for an interview so having a photo which does not look professional or your best could mean a lost opportunity. They way you present yourself including your professional profile tells them a lot about yourself (or they think it does) which can have either a positive or negative impact on your career.
You could say that image is everything these days. You are a brand whether you like it or not so need to think like one if you want to boost your chances of being hired. Whether you are a professional or talent, it is very competitive to land the dream job (role). A good quality headshot is what could make you stand out from your competition. If you lucky enough to have your perfect job already, your brand and image is still crucial. You might be working with colleagues or business associates who you have not met in person yet. They might look you up to connect to you on LinkedIn before you meet in person; forming a first impression based on your profile alone. It is the reality nowadays. Do you say you don’t care what people think? Think again - there is a plenty of research out there which found that more attractive people find it easier to land a job, get promoted and even earn more. For those in sales, self-employed or entrepreneurs, the image becomes even more important as people create impression of your business and you from your corporate / business headshots on your website as well.
In a professional portrait shoot you will benefit from a professional ‘beauty lighting’ that can make you look more attractive (normal camera flash has the opposite effect). A good portrait photographer should be able to make you feel comfortable in front of the camera (please note that this cannot be achieved in a high street studio which does passport photos - needs longer portrait shoots / sessions). Another benefit is receiving the right posing guidance and direction. Professional portrait photographer should have many tricks and techniques up their sleeve to help you look your best resulting in professional headshots that might even ‘wow’ your colleagues, family and associates. With the right photographer it can also be a confidence-boosting experience to have a professional shoot like that.
About the author:
Zuzana Breznanikova has build a reputation as one of the foremost portrait photographers in London. She hates being in front of camera herself which helps her emphasise with her clients who highly recommend her portrait photography services.