The Four Rules of Never Taking a Bad Photo Again

KAPOW Headshots teach us how to be more photogenic

By Tom Gavin

The Four Rules of Never Taking a Bad Photo Again
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06 February 2017

Uncomfortable truth: people judge books by covers.

And from Tinder dates to LinkedIn connections, they judge you by that little thumbnail photo sitting front and center on all your digital profiles.

So toss out the selfies already and get a proper headshot, care of KAPOW, a new portrait-only service from a team of local shutterbugs, now taking private sessions.

Says founder Dan K.: “I really wanted to focus first and foremost on the headshot, but also spend more time on the experience that surrounds it.” Which is to say, booking a session online is a breeze. And what you get is plain and simple: a professional portrait shot delivered in 24 hours.

Whether you prefer a studio setting or the great outdoors, he’s got you covered.

As for putting your best self forward in that photo? We sat down with Dan in his studio to ask him for a few tricks on achieving just that.

Keep your skin 100%.
“One of the biggest way you can improve your headshot is to drink a ton of water at least 24 hours before the shoot. It improves the appearance of skin and makes people more alert and awake. I can’t stress this enough. Also, keep the cocktails to a minimum the night before. Actually, just skip 'em."

Consider your whole head.
“A lot of people put their head and chin back into their necks when they smile. You can minimize this by sticking your head out a little bit (not too much so that you look like a giraffe). In simpler terms, if you keep your body perfectly still, but move your head directly towards the camera about two inches, that should do the trick. If your nose is long, try to take a headshot with your head as straight on as possible. If your nose is wide, try to take it at as much of an angle as possible.”

Keep your style simple.
“Bring options. The photographer will be able to help with choosing items that work best. There are things at play that you may not realize, such as background color being the same as what you’re wearing. You don’t want to look like a floating head with a nice smile. Generally, you'll wanna stick to simple patterns or solid colors. You don’t want to make people look too much at your clothes. Remember: it’s a headshot, not a shirtshot."

Find your good side.
“Take your headshot at an angle! It’s really rare that you’ll see a quality headshot where the shoulders are square on with the camera. This angle tends to make people look bigger than they might be in real life. Instead, always have your shoulders at a 20-30 degree angle to the camera. This will ensure a more dynamic shot, and make your proportions look correct.”

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