It’s fair to say that the majority of our work here at Everlasting Moments Photography is Weddings and family portrait based.
As a result, not many of our clients are aware that we can, and or do frequently cover commercial photography services too.
The most common area of this tends to be Head Shots for local companies and businesses.
In todays digital age, head shots have become an ever more important tool in a company’s marketing toolbox.
Thank’s to social media and company websites, head shots are now a necessity for profile and ‘about us’ pages. Like it or not, this is something that is here to stay and won’t be changing.
Now, whilst you might love that selfie you took in the mirror of the local pub’s toilets for your personal Facebook page, it’s generally not advisable using that for your LinkedIn profile and or on your company’s website!
When it comes to business, you want your profile picture to represent you professionally – it should reflect the quality of your brand, show you as a professional, be inviting and friendly so that people can see that you are an approachable person who they want to do business with.
What a lot of people forget is that profile pictures and such head shots are quite often the first instance that a potential client/customer will indirectly vet you and your company – it is your first impression to impress them and fill them with confidence that you are someone that they want to do business with.
It’s that old saying “Your first impression, is your last”.
It is so true, if you went to a job interview or a meeting with a potential client, you wouldn’t turn up in scruffy and casual clothes would you? You would wear a suit or be dressed smartly and in a presentable way so that you represented yourself in the best possible manner.
So it always amazes me when I see this rule being forgotten with the use of unprofessional profile photos on business related web and social media accounts.
Whilst I joke about selfies in pub toilets, a bad profile photo isn’t just restricted to such an undesirable location – there are many other things that constitute towards a bad profile photograph;
• Poorly lit – some photos are taken in dark conditions and you can’t see the person’s face particularly well for a start, and in addition it can also give a mysterious and untrustworthy feel to the picture
• Unflattering lighting – in variation to the above, there is unflattering light – where the person is sat in a bad position in relation to a light source and it creates unflattering shadows on the face and in particular around the eyes. Firstly the person won’t be happy that they don’t look a million dollars, and secondly such shadows don’t help to create that ‘welcoming’ feel to the portrait. Likewise if it’s a tungsten light that is illuminating them in the photo, they might even appear like the Tango man with hues of orange changing their skin tone colour!
• Direct flash – again another light related issue, where a camera or camera-phone have been used to capture the photo and it’s activated the small in-built flash on the device… this creates hard shadows on the face and can also add noticable white ‘hot-spots’ on the skin, giving people shiny foreheads/noses/cheeks – never a good look for anyone!
• Cluttered backgrounds – one of the most common issues in most amateur head shots taken by employees in the office environment. Generally thought isn’t given to what might be visible in the background, this can range from things like other employees, office equipment, fire exit signs, fire alarm buttons, fire extinguishers, light switches… all of which are distractions from the person in the photo, and it just looks unprofessional.
So, if you’re serious about representing your business, and feel that your profile picture(s) are not striking the right chord in how your brand should be represented, my honest advice would be to look into getting professional head shots taken.
You can read more about our commercial photography services on our website, and we do also have some various examples in a gallery page too.
I’ve added some head shots that we recently captured for the team at Calver Groom Financial Management and of which they have used on their website – this gives you an example of the head shots that we can capture, and just to also underline that they don’t have to feel or look cheesy or false!