One reason so many people shy away from having professional portraits made is that they feel uneasy in front of the camera. Yet the most important thing a photographer can do to get great professional business headshots is to help their clients feel comfortable. Only then will they get a fantastic portrait which shows their client at their very best.
But there is much that can be done to ease anxiety before the photographer even gets started. The first thing I would recommend to help you feel at ease for your professional business headshots is to be prepared. It sounds obvious but it’s absolutely true. The more you have thought things through and prepared yourself, the more in control you’ll feel. So plan that outfit, get your hair done, and be ready to go in advance.
Next, address your mindset. It’s incredible how much we can turn a negative into a positive by just reframing it. Meditation and breath work can really help with your mindset. If you think of the shoot as something that could be fun and at worst will leave you with some flattering photos, then it’s less of an ordeal. I mean, how bad could it be?!
When it comes to the day of the photoshoot, it’s best to do something which makes you feel good such as eating your favourite breakfast, taking some exercise or even just listen to your favourite music en route. And when you arrive at the studio you can always ask your photographer if he/she minds if you burn your favourite scented candle or play your Spotify playlist. All professional photographers want their clients to feel at ease and will usually do their best to accommodate your requests. If nothing else, it’s going to achieve the best results for them too!
And then once the photoshoot starts, it’s all about posing in the most flattering way. Actually, most people have no idea of how to position themselves for the camera. Posing can be researched and practised, but most of us have had zero training. So it’s really the photographer’s job to help their clients look calm and pose in a way that’s doing them justice. One effective trick that photographers use is movement. People are feel more free when they move around than when they are stationary. Professional models are of course aware of this and constantly change position when working. They don’t just stand poker straight staring ahead and nor should you. I sometimes get my subjects to jump up and down and shake themselves out to relax before I start shooting. And you can really tell when the subject is at ease in front of the camera. It just shines through in the portrait.