Today I was contacted by a potential client to take their headshots. Fortunately...this happens often! But a lot of times, I may never hear from that person again or regular contact turns to radio silence. Not because of my prices or because of my work, but I do believe the process of taking headshots can be quite intimidating.
I have found that most times I close the deal and the client decides to move forward when we take the conversation to the next step in the process like location, hours, creative direction and the like. But when clients only inquire about costs, I find they fold and move on from believing they need head shots or can actually execute them. But we all need brand boosters as this could be a piece that could ultimately elevate our profile and brand.
So lets put it out there. Here is what the process looks like and what you should be getting from your shots. Hopefully this removes any unnecessary fears and helps you jumpstart your next set of goals.
1 - find a photographer who has a voice and eye similar to the vision that you have for your images.
2 - contact about 2-3 photographers that line up with your vision, understanding that you would love to work with ANY of them. ***be sure to get referrals as well***
3 - choose one based off of costs, schedule, number of looks included, creative direction and their ability to deliver the photos in the time you need them. ***note*** looks are the number of outfit changes you will make during the shoot.
4 - ask them to send you an estimate. you do NOT have to work with them because they sent you an estimate. It is a part of our business development to share and send costs.
5 - if timing, costs and vision continue to line up, consider moving forward with the right photog.
6 - BUT FIRST - how do you work? do you need your hand held during the process? Will they send you a set of tips to prepare? Can they send you a shot list of looks you are trying to achieve? Are they open to you sharing your make up, hair and wardrobe ideas? will you have time on set to do your hair and make up? Be sure their work ethic lines up with yours as well. You don't want to be rushed during this rare opportunity. Find out if you will receive high resolution photos or low resolution photos? Are you ok with either? You will need high resolution photos if they will be blown up in size and low resolution for the likes of the web or digital purposes.
7 - sign off on an estimate you are comfortable with.
8 - choose a location
9 - schedule your shoot date
10 - schedule a time to talk beforehand
11 - share images that you want to achieve and agree to them. be sure the photog can achieve the looks.
12 - prepare hair, makeup and wardrobe (if you are not prepared, it is NOT the fault of the photographer or retoucher). keep in mind EVERYONE needs makeup. light and flashes will dig right through your natural and beautiful skin tone.
13 - SHOOT
14 - ask your photog the day you will be able to see images understanding this should have been agreed upon in a signed off estimate.
15 - receive your images.
16 - choose the best 3-5 images.
17 - have your images retouched. make sure they look how you want them to. are you looking for natural? editorial style? more touched up images? be sure to let the photographer know before they are shot and retouched.
18 - receive your final images in the agreed upon resolution, format and timing.
19 - and now SOAR AND FLY!
More questions? Just shoot me a message. and you can check out my samples on my site under the collections tab. xo, mj.