I am not a big fan of getting my picture taken. I am not particularly photogenic, nor am I comfortable in front of the camera. So posing for a headshot is definitely not my idea of a good time.
Nonetheless, once I got a book deal, I knew I should retire my current avatar–my head cut out of a family photo–and get something more professional.
But I really didn’t want to.
For two months, I hemmed and hawed, and tried to think of a way to get out of doing it. But in the end, I bit the bullet and paid a professional photographer.
Here are five reasons I’m glad I did.
1. A photographer isn’t going to lie about what looks good
Photographers are only as good as the photos they take. So they aren’t going to let you get away with any goofy ass poses that make you look like a moron (whereas your best friend will).
2. A photographer knows how to work an angle
Nope, you don’t look like Cameron Diaz. God knows, neither do I. But a good photographer will find just the right angle to get you at least a little bit closer to gorgeousness.
3. Lighting makes the headshot
The right lighting can make all the difference. And photographers? Have all sorts of super fancy gizmos and gadgets to turn even the shadowiest corner into the perfectly lit setting for your headshot.
4. Photographers know how to make you comfortable
I am normally a stiff, awkward mess when someone points a camera at me. But my photographer made it relatively easy to relax and feel confident about the whole thing (although I honestly couldn’t tell you how). It shows.
5. You get what you pay for
Sure, my hub could have taken a perfectly decent photo of me. But he wouldn’t have gotten this:
I don’t know who that girl is, but she’s pretty hot. And I’m going to splash her face everywhere it’s appropriate.
So if you’re thinking about getting a headshot, go ahead and do it. And if you’re not thinking about it, you probably should be.
We writers may make our living with words, but it’s still a visual world.