What's the deal with headshots?

It's more important than ever to have a great headshot. Your face is everywhere these days, whether you like it or not. Here we'll tell you what to expect from a headshot sitting with Paul, and everything you need to know to make sure your headshot is the best it can be. If you're looking for Boise headshot pricing information please click here.


Everything we do is intentional, and every little details adds up to one common goal: to make you look and feel your best. Our guiding principle is that we want you to look and feel your best because if you’re feeling good about yourself, you’re going to look good on camera, and we can make the best headshot you’ve ever seen of yourself. We don’t want to make anything less than the best headshot you’ve ever had. The best headshot is one that makes a powerful connection when someone sees it, drawing the viewer to look into your eyes. It is the connection with the eyes that makes or breaks a headshot. Some say the eyes are the gateway to soul, we just think that looking into someone’s eyes is one of the most human connections we can make, and if you can get someone to connect in a human way to your headshot then you’ve made the best impression you can with a headshot. Headshots aren’t about how pretty or handsome you are. Headshots are about looking like the best human you can be right now, and making a human connection with the people that see you looking your best.

We put everything we know into making your best headshot, but despite all of our preparation and attention to detail, you’re still going to have a big role to play. It’s your face after all. Don’t worry though, we’ve written everything you need to know to make your headshot the best it can be, and put it all right here, free to the world. If you book with us, please read it over so that you can come to the studio ready to give us your absolute best, and we’ll be ready to do the same.

The headshot sitting

You don't actually sit, that's just what they call it. Our goal is to make the best headshot you can get. It usually takes less than 30 minutes in front of the camera for one headshot. For rebranding sessions we usually take a little longer to do a few wardrobe and background combinations. During the sitting you'll be expertly posed and lit with soft light that is flattering for all skin types. If you really want to look your best, and most people do, we highly recommend booking our stylist Sydney Ross for your session. For women, hair and makeup styling takes about an hour. For men, grooming and styling takes about 20 minutes.

The stylist's touch

We highly recommend having our preferred stylists in the studio for your sitting to do hair, makeup and wardrobe styling so that you look and fee your best. Our preferred stylists share the same passion for our work as we do. They doesn't just "do your hair and makeup," they makes you feel like a million bucks, and the camera loves confidence. Everyone on our team are expert, wizard level hair and makeup artists and they'll help you pick your best wardrobe too. For men, our stylists make sure your face is properly groomed and your clothes are a good fit. After making you look and feel awesome before the shoot, our stylists keep an eye on your hair, makeup and wardrobe while we shoot your headshot. They doesn't just stand there and say "everything looks great," they get in there and fix stuff while we're shooting, and it makes a huge difference. Having a professional stylist makes the pictures better and that's the bottom line. I recommend a stylist for every client, men and women alike.

Women, if you decide to book a stylist for your sitting it will add about an hour to the total time you'll be in the studio. We prefer that you come in as natural as possible, with hair washed the previous day, and little or no product in your hair or on your face. That being said, we understand that you may be coming from work or some other place where you need to style your hair and wear makeup. Don’t worry, we can work around it and still bring out your best. Feel free to bring in your foundation if you think it’s tricky to match, and any of your favorite product you may want us to use.

What to Wear

When it comes to styling choices, remember that we want the focus to be on your face and we want to draw the viewer into your eyes so they make a human connection with your headshot. The most important thing about your wardrobe is that it doesn’t distract attention from your face. For this reason, we prefer neutrals, black, gray, light gray, and white. We want to avoid anything that will distract the eye, such as bright colors or loud patterns. If you want to add a little color, stick to solid earth tones or dark/muted colors, like forest green or navy blue. When in doubt, bring multiple options and we will help you pick the best look to match your brand. What you wear from the shoulders down won’t matter much unless you are sitting for portraits in addition to headshots, in which case the same advice applies to your pants and shoes. We usually advise against jewelry and other distracting accessories but you’re welcome to bring in whatever you want and we’ll shoot it both ways, with and without jewelry.

White, Gray or Black Background?

You might have noticed that we only offer three background options for headshots, white gray and black. There are two primary reasons. First and foremost, these neutral colors do not distract attention away from your face and eyes, so there is a greater chance that the viewer will connect with your eyes. Second, these three colors never look dated. Colorful backgrounds, like the very popular “blue speckle” as I call it, are distracting to the eye and often are associated with a particular era. For instance the “blue speckle” reminds people of a high school yearbook photo from the 1990s. The orange brick background is reminiscent of the 1980s, etc. For these reasons we strongly advise sticking to the color palette that the great masters have been using for generations for their face featuring qualities and look both classic and modern at the same time, and therefore refuse to be dated to a particular era. Read more about what each background choice conveys about your brand in the headshot galleries.

Why are you cropping the heads?

We’re starting to sound like a broken record, but it’s all about the face and eyes. We crop into the head to give more real estate to your eyes while maintaining the most striking composition, with your eyes high in the frame. Making your eyes a bigger part of the frame and placing them in just the right spot will increase the connectability of your headshot. Cropping into the head is something of a modern trend in headshot photography, so it has the added benefit of looking less traditional. Look at any magazine rack and you’ll see headcrops everywhere, especially on the covers of fashion and entertainment magazines.

Horizontal vs. vertical headshots

We deliver horizontal headshots because they are more modern than the traditional vertical head and shoulder portrait. Horizontal headshots fit perfectly with today’s modern devices that feature widescreen orientations (phones, laptops, widescreen TV and computer screens, etc.), and can be easily cropped to a square for profile photos on the most popular social media. Social media also features horizontal images more prominently than vertical images, so again your chances of making a connection go up with a horizontal headshot. For these reasons, the vertical orientation is becoming a bit old-fashioned.