How to Make a DIY Photo Look Like a Professional Headshot

How to Make a DIY Photo Look Like a Professional Headshot

General Marketing

Photography has become one of the most important aspects of life for today's generations, and there is a growing need to capture more professional-looking images. When we talk about a therapist's professional headshot, we are talking about one of the most important components of their personal and professional branding. As a therapist, your headshot could be a way to present yourself to the world, and it should reflect the image you are trying to portray. 

To create the perfect headshot, it is advisable to capture the essence of the person in front of the camera. The pose, making eye contact, facial expressions, location, and lighting are just some of the points that will allow you to achieve it.  Luckily nowadays with the help of your smartphone’s camera and a few tips to get the right shot in the right light, you can make a DIY photo look like a professional-looking headshot.

1. Location.

What is behind is crucial, even though it often appears out of focus. A plain white wall or a solid background that looks clean will help you to focus attention on yourself. White- or mono-colored backgrounds are best for a formal business appearance. It will make your photo look more professional and can be used for any other promotional material.

However, if you’re trying to go for a more casual look, you can try outdoor headshots. It will allow more creativity and will make a unique portrayal of your personality.

2. Lighting

You will need medium lighting that allows you to focus on details such as the texture of the skin, lips, and eyes. The fundamental thing is to avoid direct light and stay away from dark spaces.

If you decide to take your photo indoors, you can set yourself up next to a window and turn off any lights in the room. If you’re outside, choose shade and stay away from direct sunlight or spotty light and make sure to find a place with a simple background.

Also, don’t forget to pay attention to the time of day since the ideal times to carry out portraits outside are around sunrise and sunset (golden hour).

3. Wear appropriate clothing.

What you are wearing in your headshot will say something about you. Try thinking about the look you are trying to convey to the people who are going to see your photo. You want to look your best, but you don’t want to look like you come from a glamorous photoshoot. Try to stick with neutral, solid-colored clothing, appropriate jewelry, and natural-looking hair and makeup. 

4. Use your camera on a self-timer or ask someone to take the photo for you.

You can practice using your self-timer and setting up your phone on a piece of furniture or you can purchase a tripod to set your smartphone on.

Always make sure to place your camera at eye level and ensure that it is steady. The benefit of you doing this by yourself is that you can take as many photos as you want until you get the perfect shot. In case you decide you rather want to have someone helping you, you can instruct them to keep the camera eye-level and take multiple shots.

While trying to work on creating the perfect headshot, take time and have some fun while doing it. Remember that you are trying to capture your essence so make sure that it’s true to you and represents you well enough for the world to see it.


We hope these tips have been helpful! And don’t forget to subscribe to receive our Thoughts on That, a newsletter built to help your business learn the marketing tools you need to thrive!


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