how to choose a headshot photographer

February 27, 2018

Need a professional profile image for your business, an actor headshot or maybe you’re building a performance portfolio as a musician?  Whatever your headshot needs may be, there are some common questions that will help you choose the right photographer if it’s for a social media profile choose a headshot photographer.  The following are some of the essentials for choosing the right headshot photographer;

Art of Headshots Edmonton by Emily Welz
Emily Photographing a model at her Art of Headshots studio in downtown Edmonton.

Choose a professional photographer

Specializing in headshots

As obvious as it may seem, I am often amazed by companies and individuals trying to shortcut and save money.  “We had our receptionist do our headshots but it backfired – we hated the pictures…  We are a professional architectural firm and our headshots didn’t match up with our talent”.  “I have been an amateur photographer for years and thought I could do my Wive’s headshot, all we did was argue and it was uncomfortable”.  

Art of Headshots Studios
Art of Headshots Studio, photography Services.

Choose a professional specializing in headshots

Just any photographer won’t do

Headshots seem simple but they are not easy and require a certain type of professional who has the aptitude for taking portraits and the professional system allowing you the customer to have all the resources needed.  Avoid hiring a professional simply because he or she is in the photography business.

Wedding Photographers

Hire a wedding photographer for weddings

Wedding photographer’s are great at capturing the candid moments and as part of their professional system they charge for prints and keep the rights of files which can be troublesome.  Certainly not all Wedding photographers lack the ability or training to produce headshots and some are quite talented but generally its a side business for them and they want to keep the discretionary rights of all files.

Art of Headshots Studios

Product and Architectural Photographers

hire product and architectural photographers for product or architectural projects

Product Photographers and Architectural Photographers may also be problematic due to common business practices such as owning all rights of materials and the creative process for finding a great picture differs from the process of finding a great portrait.  Product and/or architectural photographers usually care about shapes, forms, lighting and background often ignoring the human being in front of them.  “My last photographer made me feel uncomfortable, asking me to move one way and another.  He was irritated with me – resulting in a terrible headshot albeit well exposure and nice lighting!”, explained a client who had hired the wrong photographer for his LinkedIn profile image.

First Camera

Hire headshot photographers

hire dedicated headshot photographers for headshots

Headshot Photographers are people photographers and understand that the most important component of portraiture is the human being.  A headshot is not just a picture of a person but a portrait, an emotional document of his or her lifeforce.  Making an individual uncomfortable is not just bad business practice but it will produce an image of someone looking as such.  Headshot photographers will find life experiences and authenticity to make a portrait trigger a subconscious response and an uncanny understanding from anyone looking at your portrait or headshot.

0114Dr.Del Dorscheid before after

Reviews and Portfolio

Google Maps Reviews

Look at the portfolio and reviews of your potential photographer.  Does he or she have the ability to consistently capture the same style of hundreds of clients?  What are his or her reviews?  

When choosing your photographer one should define how important is your career?  How important is your brand and what do you want to represent?

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