This time of year, lots of people and companies are thinking about refreshing their website and LinkedIn profiles with new portraits (as they should.) So if you’re one of the lucky ones with a portrait session in your future, here are my top 5 tips to help you prepare!
1. Take care of yourself in the days and nights before your photo. Specifically, get plenty of sleep and drink a lot of water! Yes, yes, I know this is hard, but it really does help to look and feel rested for your portrait!
2. Choose clothes that fit well and flatter your shape, that are classic and won’t look dated in a few years. I recommend that you wear the kind of clothing you wear to work each day and in which your clients would expect to see you. If you don’t wear a suit and tie to client meetings, then don’t wear a suit and tie in your portrait. Your portrait should be as authentic as possible. Don’t stress too much about the colors, and if you aren’t 100% sure what you want to wear, then bring a few options with you to try on.
3. Even if you don’t wear makeup on a normal day, consider wearing some for your portrait. It really does help bring attention to your eyes and smooth your skin tone. Also always go with matte makeup, and try to avoid makeup with SPF in it, since that could make you look extra shiny.
4. Before your session, think about what you want your portrait to convey. Strength? Kindness? Confidence? Do you want to appear approachable or commanding? Do you want an expression that says, “Great to see you!” or one that says, “I mean business.” Your profession and personality will dictate what your photo should communicate, but then through posing, lighting, and photographic techniques, we can help draw those things out.
5. Don’t be too hard on yourself. We are all flawed and we all see our flaws more clearly than anyone else does. Try to be open minded and accept your appearance. Know that blemishes, stray hairs, and some facial lines can be retouched, too! Everyone has a better side, everyone has one eye that is smaller than another, everyone has lines around their mouth. So don’t be so hard on yourself!