Preparing for your Headshot

April 25, 2019

Preparing for your headshot photoshoot is easy. Think of it like a business meeting or lunch date.

You’ll probably be more nervous for your headshot than you would be for a lunch date or meeting but there really isn’t any reason to be.

For some people having a headshot taken is like visiting the dentist for a checkup. Much like visiting the dentist, it’s over quickly and it doesn’t hurt a bit. However, I understand that some people don’t look forward to having their picture taken but hopefully some of this advice should help.


First things first relax! Easier said than done but the more relaxed that you can be the sooner it will all be over. Why not relax, what’s the worst that can happen? The worst case scenario is that you don’t like the picture and delete it.

So shake off the fear, eyeball the lens and have done with it. The purpose of the headshot is to make a good first impression, start building your personal brand and setting the tone so that people know what to expect when they meet you. Looking scared isn’t part of that plan – to overcome looking scared lean forward a little.

Looking at the lens and leaning in to the camera (slightly) will help shape the image, which in turn, will help you to look relaxed and in control. You might think that leaning back for that James Dean, Brad Pitt nonchalance is your style but forget it. More often than not you’ll look lazy, nervous or both.


Whether to smile or not is the big question. If you don’t smile there’s a risk that you’ll look a little grumpy. The sexy, smouldering look that you’re imagining in your head isn’t what will come out in the picture. You’ll probably just looked a bit pissed off.

Don’t worry a smile doesn’t have to be a big cheesy grin, you don’t need to show off every tooth in your head. A little simple smile will do just fine and will look nice and natural in the pictures.

If you are hell bent on the no smile intense look then you’d better start practicing your pout. Watch the video in this blog to learn the squinch technique.

What to Wear

What to wear for a headshot is easy, keep it simple. Your face is the most important part of the picture, specifically your eyes so try not to distract too much by wearing a Micky Mouse tie or Hawaiian shirt.

Big jewellery can be also be a little distracting but subtle piece are fine.

Glasses can sometime cause the photographer a lot of work but if you always wear your glasses then keep them on for the photograph.

So there you have it. Easy, right. Follow those five simple steps and leave the rest to Photo Heads.

In summary;

  • Relax.
  • Smile (but don’t force it).
  • Look at the lens.
  • Wear something simple, (without) distraction.
  • Keep your glasses on, if you can’t see without them.
All content Copyright © 2024 Photoheads. Commercial Photography