3 Reasons To Update Your Headshot

THE ROAD HOME: ACUPUNCTURE & CHINESE HERBAL MEDICINE WITH ANGIE JACKSON, LAC

How Often Should I Update my Headshot?

A headshot is a professional, high quality image that becomes a keystone of your personal brand. It is used to present you and your essence to the world in a wide variety of business applications, such as your website, your Facebook profile image, or your LinkedIn profile.

New headshots allow you to connect with your audience and show yourself as you look in the present moment. For many professionals, staying current is paramount and a new image is a way to promote yourself, market your services, and maintain an up-to-date brand.

How often you update depends on the use of your headshot, but chances are you will want to update it more often than you expect. New photos can keep prospects interested and connected to you, especially on social media and LinkedIn.

The following circumstances may indicate it’s time for an update: 

1. New Look

Your look may have changed a great deal since your last headshot. A change in hairstyle is always a good time to update your photos, so people know what to expect when they meet you in person. And if your fashion has been updated — you might be changing your personal brand or adopting a new wardrobe — it’s a good time to update your image.

2. New Career

Your career, work place, or client base may have shifted and a new image can be a great way to mark a shift in circumstances. 

3. Shift in lifestyle

You may be experiencing a time where you feel at your personal best; this is the best time to get your newest image! That fresh energy will be conveyed in your updated photo.

Timing for Updating Your HEadshot

Ultimately, any change is a good time to refresh your headshot, but, as a rule of thumb, every 6-12 months is a good amount of time for most situations. After all, we all change a lot in a year and it’s good to get new energy around your image, especially in professional circumstances.

If you are getting headshots for a company or organization you may want to consider updating the images every couple of years to keep a fresh image.

As a note:

Being up-to-date is not enough. You need a high quality headshot to really present yourself in the best light. A professional photographer takes into consideration many technical concerns like the quality of light, the pose, and the use of a high quality camera with a pro lens. Don’t settle when it comes to creating an image that will present you at your best.

Look at the work of the photographer you are interested in and make sure their headshots capture people in a natural, relaxed way. An image that doesn’t detract from the individual and shows the individual in their best light is a good sign that the photographer has the skill required to capture you well. 

Below are some headshots I have taken at various locations and for a variety of professionals, from therapists to coaches to corporate employees. 

Interested in Working Together?

Like what you see? Contact Erica for Indoor and Outdoor Headshot Sessions starting at $249.00. Let’s get you an updated image that will keep your personal brand fresh and engaging.

View the Natural Light Studio

The Natural Light Headshot Studio

The light and bright natural light studio located in NW Portland.

You’ll see large windows to allow the south facing light to illuminate the space. You can choose from a handful of background colors as options for your portrait.

With a few light modifiers, a couple poses and you are all set with a new headshot.

Additional Studio Backdrop Options

In addition to the classic white and cream, “Office and Livingroom” set up, moveable wall colored backdrops are now available in pale pink and gray green.

Background Color Options: Classic White, Tan, Cream, Pale Pink and Gray Green
Background Set Ups: Office Set, Livingroom Set

Why Choose the Natural Light Studio for your Headshot?

You comfort is paramount for a photo shoot, especially if you are taking a headshot. Working around cold weather or rain can distract from a relaxed image. A temperature-controlled environment allows you to bring your best to the shoot.

One benefit of working indoors is that it’s easy to change outfits and try different looks. When you want to try this, be sure to check with the photographer and make sure your scheduled time can accommodate outfit changes.

Our natural light photo studio has an area to hang up your clothes, dress, and do touch ups, so it’s very easy to try a different shirt or check your makeup.

If you’re worried that a photo will look too plain in a studio environment, think again. The job of a headshot or portrait is to capture your energy and personality with a high quality professional image.

The focus of the viewer will be entirely on you and how you come across in the photo. Background elements can contribute to the feeling of an image, but often aren’t required to get the desired effect. However, if you want some environmental elements, our natural light studio has both an office and living room setup that can be added to your image to give it a bit more ambience.

While the weather and ease of working are great reasons to schedule time in a natural light studio, the light itself is a boon, as well. Some studios specialize in strobe light photography, which can be wonderful when done well. However, much strobe photography can make a headshot look staged or cookie-cutter, something you don’t want in a headshot.

We work only in natural light where the soft and even lighting from our studio windows accentuates your personality and allows you to simply show up and be yourself.

Outside photos are very often taken in environments where there are other people around. Even in controlled, quiet locations there is the need to work around the elements and the environment to get a great shot. In the studio, the focus is entirely on you and getting a great photo.

Want to see the great results we can get from natural light studio photography?

The photographs below were made using the studio with large windows to allow the south facing light to illuminate the space.

The result is even, soft lighting that makes each person shine.

Other options are On Location Headshots In Portland with choices that include office spaces, work spaces or brand specific indoor spaces or Outdoor Headshot sessions allow for multiple background options and offer a variety of textures.

SCHEDULE A PHOTOGRAPHY SERVICE TODAY
ericajmitchell@gmail.com | (831) 402-3895

A Guide for Headshot Sessions in the Fall

Natural Light Indoor Headshot

Indoor Headshots in Fall Weather

So what do you do when it’s raining or, even worse, snowing the day of your headshot photography session? It might be obvious, but Fall weather is not always conducive to an enjoyable or quality photo shoot. 

This presents challenges in booking an outdoor on location headshot.

Our solution is the light and bright natural light studio located in NW Portland. With a few light modifiers and a couple of poses you are all set with a new headshot.

Here are six reasons that you would opt for an natural light studio session versus braving the elements during a season when rain can be the norm:

Headshots in Studio

1. Weather

Inclement weather doesn’t prevent you from having your photos taken outdoors, but it does often lead to the need to schedule according to the forecast — and the weather doesn’t always live up to expectations.

It can sometimes require pushing a shoot out to a less desirable time or demand a spontaneous reschedule when the weather happens to be accommodating.

A studio session is predictable and can be easily scheduled.

2. Comfort

You comfort is paramount for a photo shoot, especially if you are taking a headshot.

Working around cold weather or rain can distract from a relaxed image.

A temperature-controlled environment allows you to bring your best to the shoot.

3. Change Outfits

One benefit of working indoors is that it’s easy to change outfits and try different looks.

When you want to try this, be sure to check with the photographer and make sure your scheduled time can accommodate outfit changes.

Our natural light photo studio has an area to hang up your clothes, dress, and do touch ups, so it’s very easy to try a different shirt or check your makeup.

4. Environment

If you’re worried that a photo will look too plain in a studio environment, think again. The job of a headshot or portrait is to capture your energy and personality with a high quality professional image.

The focus of the viewer will be entirely on you and how you come across in the photo. Background elements can contribute to the feeling of an image, but often aren’t required to get the desired effect.

However, if you want some environmental elements, our natural light studio has both an office and living room setup that can be added to your image to give it a bit more ambience.

5. Light Quality

While the weather and ease of working are great reasons to schedule time in a natural light studio, the light itself is a boon, as well. Some studios specialize in strobe light photography, which can be wonderful when done well. However, much strobe photography can make a headshot look staged or cookie-cutter, something you don’t want in a headshot.

We work only in natural light where the soft and even lighting from our studio windows accentuates your personality and allows you to simply show up and be yourself.

Headshots in Studio

6. Privacy

Outside photos are very often taken in environments where there are other people around. Even in controlled, quiet locations there is the need to work around the elements and the environment to get a great shot.

In the studio, the focus is entirely on you and getting a great photo.

Want to see the great results we can get from natural light studio photography?

The photographs below were made using the studio with large windows to allow the south facing light to illuminate the space.

The result is even, soft lighting that makes each person shine.

Interested in Working Together?

Contact Erica for Indoor Headshot Sessions starting at $309.00.
Let’s get you an image you will be proud to show the world.

How to Choose the Best Photos for your Website

The top 5 types of website images

Choosing photos for your website that will give a visual impact on the first click. We will cover the top 5 types of images most businesses use on their website.

1. Professional Headshot

The goal of a professional or personal business headshot session is to develop an image that projects confidence, intelligence, and approachability. Having a high quality photograph of you will create an immediate connection for your clients and customers.

See more examples of Professional Headshots.

2. Image banner

An image banner can set off the tone of your website because it usually is the first time the viewer will see.

When choosing an image banner consider:

  • orientation
  • size and image quality
  • focus
  • style

Orientation will be important depending on if the image was created horizontal or vertical. Tip: A horizontal image will be easier to crop into an image banner.

Size and the quality of the image will be key in getting a clear photo without being too big or too small. If the banner is too small you could see pixelation or the image won’t be big enough to expand the width needed for the banner. If the image is too big you could risk SEO ranking by slowing down your site. Tip: Find out the exact pixel dimensions before uploading your banner.

Focus is about where you want the viewer to look. I like to have a soft focus for by banner images to allow the subject matter to stand out. It also helps if I have text over the image. Tip: Know where you want to put your text and allow for out of focus subject matter to land there.

Style is all about the brand. Choosing an image that represents your business and hooks the viewer to want to see more. Tip: Use your brand colors or objects to reflect in your image banner.

3. Images of what you offer

Images of what you offer can greatly impact the view when they visit your website. It tells us what you do and what you sell. 

Whether you service people as a specialist in your field or selling a product, there is a way to photographically tell your story to grab the attention of your ideal clients.

Tip: Create custom photography of your brand to show your customers and clients who you are and what you are doing. They will resonate and become familiar with the work you do. Ultimately, we want our images to sell your work when you aren’t showcasing it in person. Photograph on location using natural light or in studio to create the desired look. 

4. Images that Tell a Story

Women with Moxie Networking in Portland Oregon
Women with Moxie Networking in Portland Oregon

Emotional impact can go a long way for your website. Stories last.

Telling a story of who you are, what you do, an achievement, a client story, an informational blog post about your work or the story of your brand will convey more of what your business is about than a body of text. 

“A brand story is a cohesive narrative that encompasses the facts and feelings that are created by your brand. Unlike traditional advertising, which is about showing and telling about your brand, a story must inspire an emotional reaction.” What’s a Brand Story by EchoStories

5. What it looks like to work with you

Showing what you do or the behind the scenes of working with you will provide insights to your potentional clients or customers.  Using images of what you do on your website generates an overall familiarity to what the customers can expect in working with you. Even if you are online only, there is a way to show your skills. Tip: Think of all the ways in which you intereact with a client and build those scenes out to be photographed. Think of it as a mini-documentary.

Interested in Working Together?

Let’s answer these photographically and then share your story with your audience on your website and social media platforms to generate higher connectivity of your business.

What’s Your Brand Story?

Your Brand Story

At its core, business photography is telling a story without words and when paired with a marketing message it adds depth to your brand. Whether you service people as a specialist in your field or selling a product, there is a way to photographically tell your story to grab the attention of your ideal clients.

Your brand has an origin story, a target market and a goal.

For a service example, you created a consulting firm to provide professional guidance, support and tips for women in leadership positions seeking help to become more efficient and better at their roles. You would have a professional headshot and portraits of you in your working environment and images of you working with your clients. You want to show who you are, what you do, where you do it and how it works.

For a product example, you created the best luxury flashlight for outdoor activities and you want to sell your flashlights to an outdoor company or directly to customers seeking a high quality product. You would have professional photographs of your flashlight for your shop as well as in the field. You would show in photographs the solution you are solving for the outdoor industry. 

What Images Do I Need?

The images captured for most business branding photography needs are product presentation, client interaction, interiors and exteriors, object details, working process, creative spaces, and lifestyle photography along with environmental portraits of the business owners or employees.

Who are you? 
Business Portrait

What do you offer? 
Service or Product Feature

What does it look like?
Finished Product

How do you do it? 
Development and Production

Why is it important? 
Lifestyle, Community and Culture

Where are you?
Storefront, On-location, Online

What happened? 
Event Coverage

Women with Moxie Networking in Portland Oregon

What’s Next?

Time to share your brand story images!

You’ll receive web and print file formats for quick and easy use to get your brand seen. Update your profile photo, your website and start posting your new images on your social media platforms to generate higher visibility of your business in the marketplace.

Being Published?
Use Your Photography in Printed or Online Articles

Need Photography for Your Website?
Be Visual and Professional Online

Elevate your Digital or Print Presentations, Business Cards and Brochures

Use Your Photography in Social Media Platforms to Market to your Fans

Have Personalized Photography when you are Networking In Person

Photography images in this post by Erica J Mitchell Photographer for a Women with Moxie video event campaign.

Want to see more Brand Photography?

Interested in Working Together?

Let’s answer these photographically and then share your story with your audience on your website and social media platforms to generate higher connectivity of your business.

Our goals are to create custom photography of your brand to show your customers and clients who you are and what you are doing. They will resonate and become familiar with the work you do. Ultimately, we want our images to sell your work when you aren’t showcasing it in person.

We photograph on location using natural light or in studio to create the desired look.

Let your posting, advertisement or marketing message stand out with well balanced, high quality, artistic photographs that will attract your ideal clients and customers.

Top 3 Challenges and Benefits for Photographing Outdoors

Working outside has its challenges and benefits. Let’s talk about why you would choose to have your headshots done outside instead of inside at The Natural Light Studio.

1. The first challenge and benefit is the weather. 

Unlike working inside a temperature controlled studio, an outdoor photography session has to work with the weather. Sometimes that means in the winter months rescheduling for that clear day, warmer or cooler temperatures. However the benefit of the weather is it can give us a beautiful natural setting for our backgrounds.

2. The second challenge and benefit is light.

Working outside requires a bit of timing when it comes to the sunlight we all enjoy. Believe it or not but the best days to photograph are those cloudy days. Ideally this gives us softer sunlight with low contrast that compliments our skin so well. We also have to think about what time to photograph which is different for each area. The best time to photograph is 1-2 hours before sunset. Here in Portland the sunsets are around 8:30pm in the summer and 4:00pm in the winter. Keep this in mind when choosing which season to book your session.

One trick most photographers use outdoors are light modifiers to bounce in light or create shadow. Visit Using the Sky as Your Light Source.

3. The third challenge and benefit is location.

In some cases a location will be obstructed by construction, traffic, or unknown factors.

In others, being outdoors gives us a fantastic space to play around with backgrounds and other elements that can enhance our headshots.

Outside locations provide a space to move around and supportive natural elements we can include in our headshot sessions to amplify our personality, profession and brand.

Josie’s Session at Cathedral Park in Portland, Oregon

For Josie’s session we photographed at Cathedral Park (Map) in North Portland’s St. Johns District. It’s a wonderful park that has an overhead bridge connecting HWY 30 to St. Johns and N. Lombard Street.

The iconic gothic bridge seems like a prototype to the well known art deco style Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco but in fact, they were created by two different bridge designers.

The designer for the St. John’s bridge perched above Cathedral Park was David B. Steinman who is quoted saying, “If you asked me which of the bridges I love best, I believe I would say the St. Johns Bridge. I put more of myself into that bridge than any other bridge.”

He created a cathedral-like base to the bridge which can be seen from the most east point creating the cathedral view. It also houses several large parks that that make up Cathedral Park with paths that lead to the river front which is where our adventure began. 

To learn about locations for headshot sessions view our two types of sessions spaces Outdoor and On Location Sessions or The Natural Light Studio for more.