The art of Corporate Headshots and how to work with and find a professional headshot photographer

A look into what makes a headshot stand out in the crowd.

Staff member for Golder Associates. Note her eyes and her smile, both express confidence and warmth.

In today’s corporate and social media landscape, having a great headshot has never been more important. Whether you need one for LinkedIn, Facebook, business cards or your website, having a great corporate headshot is paramount. But with so many options out there how do you choose the photographer?

Some basic things to look for are style, range of work, quality of lighting and equipment. Most of all though, look for the expressions that the photographer is getting out of their subject. Expression is probably the most important aspect of a headshot.

As the focus is on the face, the subject needs to have a great expression on their face! It’s all very well and good to get someone standing in front of a clean white background, but if their expression is no good then the result is just a photo. It needs to tell the person’s story. To achieve this, the photographer needs to be able to make the subject feel comfortable and relaxed, as well as using the person’s expression to tell the viewer who they are.

There is one thing the photograph must contain, the humanity of the moment.” 


Typical Clients

Corporate clients can range from lawyers, accountants, CEOs and executives right down to general staff members who need a photo for ID cards. Generally our clients are seeking headshots for their company profile / website, however we have seen a dramatic rise in people seeking professional shots for their LinkedIn profile photo. At Headshot Photographer, we can photograph any format needed and supply final images cropped for any social media or website platform.

How to find a photographer that will set you apart.

Sifting through Google to find a photographer can be like finding a needle in a haystack. There are plenty of options out there, it is about finding the right person or business. Quality of lighting and equipment, photographer personality, fast turnaround and understanding how the findal photos will be used are all factors that need to be considered by clients when looking for a photographer. Obviously the final product is paramount. A photographer might be a great person, but if they don’t have the skills necessary to deliver a clean, professional and well-lit image, as well as
delivering on the brief supplied, you as the client will be left with an underwhelming product.

Corporate / LinkedIn headshots don’t always need a suit and tie, or a white background. Stand out of the crowd by being different.

Wardrobe and makeup.

This is a very important factor that needs to be addressed. It doesn’t matter how good a photographer is, if the client is wearing a suit that is too big or small, with a creased shirt and messy hair, the photo will never reach its potential. At Headshot Photographer we supply a tips and tricks sheet for every client to read through giving good advice on colours to wear, and NOT to wear more importantly. Avoid chunky necklaces or large earrings – they are too distracting!

Clean, fitted clothing is a must and make sure you are ‘hair ready’ (photographers get asked all the time: “How does my hair look?”). Odds are the photographer doesn’t know how you like to wear your hair!

Expression, expression, expression!

The key to any photograph is a great expression. This is especially prevalent for a headshot! There is a common misconception that a good camera / lighting will yield a great result. NOT TRUE! It is the photographer’s job to get the best out of their client, however the client needs to come to play as well. If you are not willing to work for your portrait there is not much the camera can do for you. There is nothing worse than seeing a photo that has been lit well, the subject has the wardrobe, the makeup and yet the expression says: Hello, I am out to lunch can you come back later? Work it, work it and work it some more! The more you bring to the session, the more your photos will speak to the audience.

Our Process

At Headshot Photographer we offer our services in studio or on location. We have industry leading equipment for either option, and we also bring any background requested with us so even if we are set up in a boardroom we can replicate a studio look for the client.

Traveling all around Melbourne as well as interstate, the car is full of lighting equipment. Our setup usually consists of between 2 and 5 lights depending on the desired look of the headshot, as well as various backgrounds. People are always surprised with the amount of equipment we bring with us, most people even commenting that they thought it would be shot on an iPhone. Equipment is not the be all and end all however using high end cameras and lighting means clients see a consistent product of a very high quality. We make sure that we can supply any background or alternatively we can utilise almost any background to create multiple effects using lighting styles and Aperture.

Coupling great gear with a comprehensive knowledge of expression means that each person is made to feel at home in front of the camera. It is imperative to create a great rapport with the subject in a matter of seconds as sometimes you only have a short amount of time to shoot someone. Every second is precious! Shooting up to 100 people in a day doesn’t leave too much room for idle chit chat so it’s our job to make a speedy connection with the subject as well as to create a relaxed and welcoming environment for everyone, thus allowing that to shine through our work.

At Headshot Photographer we pride ourselves on being at the forefront of the industry, as well as being proud and confident of the headshots we deliver to clients on a regular basis.

Upon completing the photography session we pack up and head back to the studio to edit, proof and retouch your photos, finishing the great work we started with you on location.


Makeup is an important tool to use for men and women. A good makeup artist will make great inroads to helping the subject feel at ease in front of the camera. They use brands and styles that suit studio / natural light, and in turn improve the photo in camera. The less a photographer has to do post the photoshoot will always benefit the subject and the photographer alike. Contouring the face to enhance the way light falls on the subject’s face is very important and an often forgotten aspect of organising a photoshoot.


Following on from the point about makeup, retouching of an image is often thought of as a ‘dirty’ word. Retouching is necessary to complete the image. Our process is to make you look like you, however the camera can be slightly unforgiving. Camera quality is so good now, sometimes they embellish aspects of your face that you didn’t even know were there! That is why Headshot Photographer makes sure everything looks natural and complementary without having that fake and obviously “Photoshopped” look.

Delivery of files

Once the job is completed and is ready for delivery to the client, it is uploaded to Dropbox and a link supplied so the client can access their files. We deliver in any format requested, however the most common is a high-res JPEG for print purposes and an Internet sRGB file for upload to websites and social media. If an image is to be used on a billboard a high-res TIFF file would be supplied so the quality is of a very high level.

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