How to prepare for your shoot

Dominique Hall by John Cassidy The Headshot Guy London

How to prepare for your shoot

How to prepare for your shoot! There’s a lot more to having your photo taken than just turning up at the studio and smiling at the camera so its worthwhile spending the time to prepare yourself properly.

Your Wardrobe

The first question we get asked is what should I wear? Well what you wear for your headshot photograph is just as important to the overall image as your expression. Clothing should simply enhance you and your features and keep the focus of attention on your face. We ask everyone to bring along a number of different outfits with them in various styles and colours. Then we can see what looks good on you, works well on camera and is appropriate for your target audience. We ask you to bring mainly tops but some bottoms too if you want some 3/4 length shots). We have 4 simple wardrobe rules:

Wardrobe Rule #1: You have to love it! We don’t want to shoot you in anything that you don’t feel comfortable wearing. If you don’t feel comfortable, it will show and you won’t shoot well in it, so don’t bring it.

Wardrobe Rule #2: If it’s not in the studio we can’t shoot it. If you find your asking yourself whether something will work, just bring it along any way. We also suggest having some fun with this and, if you feel your wardrobe is missing something, then go shopping keep the tags on (you can always return the items you don’t want to keep after the shoot).

Wardrobe Rule #3: Be yourself. This is where you can get some of your own personal style into the shot. People always ask what colors are best and we can’t answer that until we see you and your wardrobe. It’s better to get a visual of something. We love bold colours, so suggest bringing a wide variety of colours. It’s amazing how many times something has looked amazing on camera that we didn’t initially think would work. And vice versa.

Wardrobe Rule #4: Don’t be too selective or seasonal. Bring everything from casual shirts and t-shirts to formal blouses and shirts to sweaters and light jackets can work. Textures and layers can work well, but would generally stay away from crazy patterns.

Professional Image Advice

Now might be a good time to seek some advice from an professional image consultant. These people are specially trained to help you find the colours and styles of clothes that enhance your body shape, features and natural colouring. We work with a number of professionals in this area who we are more than happy to recommend. Having gone through this process we know how much more confident you feel knowing you are wearing the right styles and colours to match your natural colouring and body shape.

Ladies – Hair & Make-up

Hair is such a personal thing so it’s best that you feel like you in your pictures. Feel free to bring whatever styling products you need in order to create your look. We love producing range by changing the hair during the session by putting it up in a pony tail etc. If you are planning on making an appointment with your hairdresser please arrange this for the day prior or even the morning of the shoot. It is a good idea to get these booked and in the diary now.

Makeup should be simple but well done so your natural assets stand out on their own. This means that make up should help the viewer focus on the eyes and the mouth, which are the essence of the headshot. Our main concern is shine so we do advise bringing along some translucent powder.

We highly recommend booking the services of a professional make up artist who can be on hand throughout your shoot and ensure you’re looking your absolute best. Again we work with a number of professional make-up artists and stylist who we are happy to recommend.

Gents

We recommend you get your haircut 4 to 5 days prior to the shoot so it doesn’t have that “freshly cut” look.

Make up is generally not required for men but we do have light face powder and blotting paper, especially if your skin tends to be a little greasy.

Your Smile

Your smile is the most important business tool and we will be encouraging you to laugh and smile naturally during your session. Research by Reading University has also proved that people look longer at a smiling face than one that isn’t. And we know exactly what to say to you in order to produce a natural attractive smile.

With this in mind you may like to book an appointment with your dental hygienist to give your teeth that all important polish and brush up to make your pearly’s look even more fantastic.

Wrinkles, laughter lines & spots…

We can never escape the aging process totally but we can help reduce the visible signs. Generally we use a soft wrap-around lighting which helps to naturally smooth lines. We do have another not so secret weapon called “Airbrushing” and although we never remove lines completely as it looks too false, we can help to reduce them further should you feel the need. Spots on the other hand, which seem to have a strange habit of appearing on the morning of your shoot, can be zapped out with no problem at all.

Glasses

If you normally wear glasses and have a strong prescription, or glasses with no anti reflection coating, we do advise that you visit your opticians and either borrow a pair of blank frames or or get them to remove your lenses for the shoot. As we can have problems with reflection and refraction. Invariably we’ll shoot some shots with and some without glasses. You might like to bring along a couple of pairs of frames.

Above all, Enjoy…

Although you will be working hard during your shoot it will also a fun and enjoyable experience. We fully understand that some people hate having their photo taken or think they are un-photogenic. This is an area we specialise in so please do let us know if you have any worries or concerns about being photographed.

Contact us now if you have any questions about how to prepare for your shoot or have any worries or concerns about being photographed