Woman wearing a blue dress, resting her chin on her hand while posing for her headshot

Creative Headshots: Making a More Noticeable Photo

One of the most common challenges people face is capturing their authentic personality while also creating an eye-catching headshot. As someone with considerable experience with headshot photography, I am going to share my professional insights and go-to strategies in this guide I call “Creative Headshots: Making a More Noticeable Photo”.

Creative Headshots: Making a More Noticeable Photo

A creative headshot should be a captivating force that can command attention and leave a lasting impression on the viewer. It’s critical to recognize the enormous potential of a well-composed headshot that draws focus and piques curiosity. 

Woman wearing a pink suit, smiling wide for her headshot photoshoot

The Importance of a Striking Headshot

In today’s visually-driven society, a striking headshot holds the key to making a powerful first impression. Whether you are building your brand, seeking new career opportunities, or establishing a professional online presence, your portrait serves as a visual ambassador, representing your identity and conveying your unique story. 

Here are compelling reasons why you should consider getting a professional headshot:

  • A powerful headshot stands out among the many profiles and photos to draw the viewer in. It acts as a visual hook that entices people to stop and look around more. You have the power to engage audiences with just a glance.
  • A vital component of your brand is your portrait. It highlights your individuality, professionalism, and charm. A strong headshot can connect with your target audience, convey your values, and arouse feelings in them. It turns into a graphic depiction of your brand’s narrative.
  • A stunning headshot can also project competence and credibility. It acts as a tangible confirmation of your abilities and knowledge. Whether you are a freelancer, looking for work, or an entrepreneur, a powerful portrait gives prospective employers, partners, and clients confidence and trust.
  • Your online presence is frequently the initial point of contact for possible professional opportunities. A striking headshot can draw attention and make a lasting impression.

By recognizing the importance of a captivating headshot, you can harness its potential to make a remarkable impression and propel your personal and professional endeavors to new heights.

Strategies for Creating More Noticeable Headshots

These useful tips will help you improve your headshot game and make your image stand out from the rest: 

Choose an Appropriate Background

Select a location that complements your personality and the message you want to convey. Opt for a background that reflects your professional field or personal interests. Consider outdoor locations for your headshots, such as urban environments, parks, or scenic spots, for a unique backdrop. 

Express Personality and Individuality 

Recognize your special traits and what makes you stand out. Try a variety of stances and gestures that are true to who you are. Include personal touches or props that represent your hobbies, career, or passions.

Woman wearing a blue dress, resting her chin on her hand while posing for her headshot

Focus on the Eyes

Often referred to as the “windows to the soul”, the eyes serve as the main subject of headshots. Make sure they are well-lit and sharp, as these factors can greatly affect how effective the picture is.

Make Use of Portrait Mode

When utilizing a smartphone, make use of the portrait mode. This function aids in blurring the background so that the subject remains the focus of the photograph.

Use a Reflector

A reflector can assist to fill in shadows and produce a more equal, attractive lighting effect by reflecting light onto your face. You don’t necessarily need an actual reflector, you could also use a white foam board, aluminum foil, or even a white bedsheet.

Be Aware of Your Expressions

Facial expressions are important in headshots. Find those that best capture the vibe you want by practicing several ones in front of a mirror. A sincere, kind smile usually works best.

Pay Attention to Wardrobe and Styling

Select an outfit for your headshot that accentuates your unique style and the desired look. For a unified effect, take into consideration the background and your surroundings for color and aesthetic harmony. If you want to get creative, play around with textures, patterns, layers, and accessories.

Experiment and Push Boundaries

Accept experimentation and strive for unconventional results. Try utilizing unusual lighting setups and camera angles. Take chances and pursue novel creative endeavors without fear.

Follow the Advice of Professionals

Professional photographers have a keen eye for composition, lighting, and posing. Take into consideration their suggestions. Professionals can offer valuable insights and techniques that will enhance the general quality of your headshots.

Preparing for the Photo Shoot

To make sure you are at your best and prepared to take powerful and memorable headshots, you must prepare for your session. Here are some things you can do to give it your best:

Woman wearing a white long top, posing with her arms crossed for a headshot
  • Select your outfits in advance
  • Practice grooming and styling
  • Get a good night’s sleep
  • Practice posing and expressions
  • Hydrate and eat well

These techniques combine some simple technical components of headshot photography and ways to make yourself feel at ease, which are necessary for taking headshots that stand out even in the absence of specialized equipment or experience.

Related Questions

What is the Best Color for a Headshot?

A headshot’s ideal color primarily depends on the subject’s skin tone, hair color, and personal branding. Neutral hues like white, black, gray, or muted tones generally work well because they do not draw attention away from the subject. Nonetheless, you must take into consideration the intended tone and context.

Should you Smile in a Headshot?

The desired image determines whether or not to smile in a headshot. A smile is appropriate in many professional contexts because it can communicate warmth, approachability, and friendliness. Some professions, such as acting or modeling, may require a more neutral or somber expression. 

Should You Wear Makeup in a Headshot?

The decision to wear makeup in a headshot is subjective and based on personal taste as well as the intended result. A polished and professional appearance can be achieved by using makeup to accentuate facial contours, even out skin tone, and enhance features. Applying makeup, however, must be done in a way that looks natural and represents your unique style.


Remember that a strong and creative headshot can make an impact, attract opportunities, and open doors for your personal and professional growth. You can overcome typical obstacles and draw attention to your distinct personality by using the methods and strategies discussed.

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