You might be an actor, a plumber, an artist, a CEO of a Fortune 500 company, a salesperson, musician or physician and you need of a new picture for your professional use. Do you need a business portrait or a headshot?
To answer that I’d like to tell you one of the most important pieces of advice I’ve ever received and it’s the foundation of why virtually every successful business is successful. No matter if you are an actor or doctor or baker you are an artist. What you do for a living is your art/skill/craft/vocation – call it what you will – this is your passion – it’s your art. If you focus only on your art you may love doing it, but you are on a course to fail. If on the only hand you say “I own a business … and it just happens to be a deli, or a doctor’s office or creating art” you realize that you must balance the books, do marketing to get clients, dream up new ideas so that you will continue to be able to do what you love to do.
Any way, that’s where I start my thinking when someone comes in for a headshot – how is your business structured and what type of picture will best help you achieve your business goals.
The Business portrait and the headshot:
First lets look at both, how they are the same and how they differ.
Both types of images need to get the feeling that you want to get from whom ever sees the picture. Are you welcoming, commanding, solid, sincere, in charge, affluent, competent, stunning, handsome, friendly, “the buck stops here”,?
The Business Portrait – formal dress, professional pose, elegant props, lit with some drama and has rich colors. This is the type of image you might see in the lobby of a hotel or on the board of directors page of a company’s website.
The Headshot – To be candid, it’a a product shot and you’re the product. You’ll typically smile or (in the case of an actor) be in character, but the look is fairly generic and welcoming. But I suggest the headshot even for the executive so they will something less formal, maybe for a company seminar they are hosting or blog post.
And then there is the headshot which is purely for commercial use; such as a print ad, website or brochure. These are very fun and bright.
Both the business portrait and the headshot can be critical parts of every company’s business marketing plan. Just a nice picture of the person with out finding out what the person wants the image to convey is not enough. Today many potential clients are surfing the net and choosing their vendors on the strength of an image.
So think about how the images will be used to help you reach your business needs and you will know what types of pictures you need.
Dan Busler is a professional portrait, performance and event photographer with studios located south of Boston in Walpole MA. You can see more of his work at http://www.danbuslerphotography.com