Tips for getting the perfect author headshot (sponsored post)

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Linda Richards Photography Author Headshots

On the back sleeve of most books, there is usually a picture of the author, smiling and sitting in an environment that just feels right. So how do you get that perfect picture?

As is true for every professional in every industry, a professional image is vital if you want to be taken seriously. This also applies to being an author. A snapshot taken by a friend, or worse, a selfie, just isn’t the type of image that conveys professionalism. Consider this: would you want to read a book from someone who wasn’t a professional writer? Your visual image is the reader’s first glimpse into your professionalism.

As is true for every professional in every industry, a professional image is vital if you want to be taken seriously. This also applies to being an author. A snapshot taken by a friend, or worse, a selfie, just isn’t the type of image that conveys professionalism. Consider this: would you want to read a book from someone who wasn’t a professional writer? Your visual image is the reader’s first glimpse into your professionalism.

What makes a great headshot? Let’s talk about a few tips.

Tailored to the genre

_MG_3783Generally, headshots should be tailored to the person’s industry, so for authors, it is a good idea to tailor your author professional headshot to your genre. For example, a self-help/personal development author will want a distinctive look from that of a romance author or a YA author.

There is also definitely a difference between fiction and non-fiction. So, keep that in mind when considering your headshot. Also, if you write for drastically different genres, consider having a different headshot for each genre.

How do you get that perfect image for your professional headshot? Does it boil down to the right clothes or simply the right setting? Or is the answer to simply find an experienced headshot photographer? The answer: all of the above.

Finding a headshot photographer

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The first key is choosing the right photographer for the job. You want to make sure to look at photographer’s work before committing to work with that photographer. Ask questions such as: do they specialize in headshots and portraits? Is their style consistent with the image you want to portray? Are they able to discuss what type of image works for your brand?

A photographer should be able to give guidance on what will work best for your brand. They should be able to help you pick out a suitable backdrop, give you tips on what to wear, and make sure that your brand is being represented well through this headshot.

Deciding what to wear

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Once you choose a photographer, the next step is deciding what to wear. Your clothes and makeup should complement your image, not be the main thing that stands out. You can look at adding splashes of color or finding simple jewelry to complement your look.

Discussing what to wear with your photographer is always a good idea. If the photo is a close-up, aka headshot, the advice may be different than if it is a portrait taken in your office or a library or other location settings.

Choosing the right location

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Headshot photo sessions can be in a variety of locations. I have a home studio where I can use backdrops but many clients also like to have their headshots outside. Depending on their desired look and industry, they might want something in a park or at a museum. Choosing the right location or combination of locations is another topic to discuss with your photographer.

Getting your professional portrait just right is key for any and all authors. Are you looking to refresh your image? Want to try something new? We have a great assortment of professional photoshoot locations in Northwest Arkansas. I’d love to help you me a call today and we can talk about changing up your professional portrait!

 

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