10 Professional Headshot Photography Tips to Get the Best Photos

Taking a perfect headshot is not easy for beginners. Sometimes, experienced people find it harder. Here are professional headshot photography tips for models, corporate, business, or outdoor photographers.

Photographers must know various photography techniques to attract the widest range of clients possible.

For instance, you must be able to perform wedding, studio, or branding shoots with the same level of expertise to improve your market demand.

Secrets of Taking Perfect Headshot

The headshot is an underrated type of photograph often overlooked by many experienced photographers.

Unfortunately, it is not usually the case. ‌ Headshot photography is like a stepping stone in a photography career. They are relatively easier than other photography.

Although this photography seems easy, as mentioned earlier, you will still need a specific set of skills you will need to master to get that particularly correct headshot.

Headshot Photography


This photography will make it quicker and easier for you to build a list of a portfolio of clients.

The photoshoot is very common with models and actors who do need new headshot photographs from time to time, depending on their age and the style they put up.

And this means headshot photographers are always at work, which is also a way to build their expertise in this craft.

Here in this article, we will go through some tips for professional headshots that will come in handy to understand how to go ahead with this kind of photography as a career choice.

Professional Headshot Photography Tips for Beginners

Professional Headshot Photography

As a photographer, you need to know these headshot photography tips to shoot photos like a pro. However, the great images always need some tweaks or touch-ups in the post-production phase.

Moreover, photoshop tools can be helpful. For example, you can outsource photoshop services to achieve greater appearances.

1. Recognize What Your Client Wants?

Headshots Photography Client

It is important to listen to the clients. If you can not take the picture per their requirements, the final product can make them unhappy, which will make them turn away from you.

Headshots are specific and personal. This means the clients will decide how they want to see themselves in the photo shoot. A good headshot photographer must understand the same to get the picture the client would readily accept.

2. Check the Camera Settings  for Headshots Beforehand 

Camera Settings  for Headshots

It might have happened many times that whenever you have taken on the cameras to click the photos, you have realized that your camera settings were incorrect.

Hence you may be forced to reset the correct settings and click on the same photos again. This is not just irritating but turns out to be a waste of time.

Ensure that the camera’s battery is fully charged and that the memory card in the camera has adequate space to store the photos beforehand.

Turn on your camera and select the setup for the headshot. And concentrate on tuning or fixing:-

  • Exposure 
  • Photo quality(i.e., Megapixels)
  • Aperture
  • Shooting Mode
  • White Balance

Always click your photos after reviewing your camera settings and conditions perfectly…

3. Try to look into Various Locations to Get the Best Background for a Professional Headshot

Locations to get Professional Headshot Bg

It is unnecessary to take the headshots with a single color background. Instead, discuss with the clients, choose locations, and experiment with what surroundings can you achieve the best headshot.

For example, outdoors in a public park or garden, on any corner of the home, or maybe on the street with good graffiti. On its wall?

There are thousands of options to choose from when trying to select a location for a photoshoot, but you need to select the one that meets the photograph’s purpose.

4. Help Select the Clothes that Harmonize Well With the Headshot Photo

Select the Clothes to Harmonize Headshot Photo

Naturally, the solid neutral colors go well with these sorts of photographs as these clothes are the least distracting.

However, if the client chooses to give a formal look to the photos, they have to make sure they are dressed in complete formal attire(including the coat). The clothing style must deliver the message your photo is trying to convey.

Also, remind the clients to have their clothes properly ironed as photo editing sites make it hard to remove wrinkles on clothes slightly.

5. Select the Best Headshot Lighting Depending on its Nature 

Headshot Lighting

For entrepreneurial headshots, it is better to keep the lighting tone low. A traditional, beautiful lighting post should be enough to capture light tone headshot photographs.

Another tip to help the focus is using one/two studio lights with a softbox to cater to the well-radiated key light.

A camera flash can work as an alternative that can be set at desired exposure settings, following which you can take test shots to adjust the output accordingly so that the exposure is correct.

6. Make People Sit Down

taking a professional headshot

People would be more comfortable sitting down and asking them to rest their hands on their thighs. This gives a good composition and is an effective tip for taking a professional headshot.

This also makes sure that the subjects know where they need to be.

7. It is About Certain Adjustments to Get the Photograph all Right  

Smiling Heads hoot

A great headshot differs from an average one accounts for small changes being done while taking a photograph. For instance, wearing a smile during the photo shoot and tilting the head slightly.

Do not hesitate to ask your subject to change the sitting postures or expressions until you get that so-called “perfect” image.

If you are taking photos using a digital camera, take as many photos as possible, and try every composition possible… Once the client has left, you cannot take any more photos.

8. Check out Whether The  Focus is on Point 

taking a headshot picture

It may disturb you to find out that the image is out of focus once put into an editing program. The focus is the prime factor to consider when taking a headshot picture.

The aperture and the focal length have to be appropriate to ensure that the subject is under the spotlight. In addition, the focus must be spread across the entire face and the shoulders instead of any single feature.

9. Edit Photos Using  Editing Software

headshot photo editing

Even if you have taken a perfect headshot photo, it may require some retouching before publication. How will you edit the photo will depend on your customer’s preferences?

When taking shots for models, they often prefer it sober, and you may need to remove the colors from the photo and use the contrast features in the software accordingly.

A branded headshot would require you to place a logo at a corner of the photo, which you would do again using the software.

Finally, editing is important to remove any imperfections that may pop up in the raw, unedited version of the photo.

10. Practice and More Practice !!!!

improve headshot photography

Like any other task, you will need more practice to improve headshot photography. However, it will allow searching composition. If you do not practice from time to time, you will lose the knowledge, and your creativity may hit rock bottom.

The trail shots can be done with your friends or family members, which you need not upload anywhere, and check on your level of expertise during such sessions.

This photography is unmistakable, and you must know how to take practice photos. Once you get the hang of this, the other tips mentioned above will be easier to follow.

11. Use The Right Lens for Headshot Photography.

Right Lens for Headshot Photography

When it comes to real estate photography, you require some particular lens used to capture real estate photography.

Furthermore, all those lenses should be efficient for real estate photography since we are talking about Professional real estate photographers.

On the other hand, The wild photography lens is not recommended for Headshot photography.

You only require those particular headshot lenses to capture the perfect headshot photo. Otherwise, It requires Headshot photo editing and Retouching Services to make any corrections.

However, to make it more transparent, I’m sharing the most common headshot photography lens available.


pro headshots photography

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