Why You Don’t Phone A Friend For A Professional Headshot

Why You Don’t Phone A Friend For A Professional Headshot

Many successful businesses begin with friendships and blossom in wildly popular and profitable ventures. Bill Gates and Paul Allen were childhood friends from school and started Microsoft; Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield met in seventh grade and make beautiful ice cream together and William Harley and Arthur Davidson worked with one another and other family members to create the most iconic American brand on two wheels. But not everything you do in your business revolves around who you know and how to do nice things for them.

Maybe you’re looking to save money, or you’re indebted to a fellow entrepreneur who did you a favor, and they need this one little favor in return. Either way, the opportunity to “use this guy/gal I know to take some nice headshots for you” presents itself.

Here are four reasons to say no to the idea of the amateur auteur:

The sister/uncle/cousin/in-law/ex-whatever is probably not using professional equipment: They may still own a PHD (Push Here Dummy) camera, one of the early-generation digital cameras, which take very nice shots of sunrises, happy hour nibbles at the bar and all the look-at-us-we-are-so-smashed selfies you want. But digital technology has come a long and very expensive way. And more than likely they will show up with their smartphones, and tell you, “Hey, why not? I can get some quick shots, and send them right to you, no problem!” Again, smartphones are fine for communication, but not that smart for professional headshots. Like the first generation digital cameras, the technology for capturing fine detail is not in the picture.

And they probably know nothing about lighting, camera angles, shading, aperture, exposure compensation and all the other five-dollar photographer’s terminology that sounds so cool and actually makes the difference between looking like you own a real business and looking like a real rodeo clown in the final results.

Do you really want these unprofessional folks on your premises? A professional photographer is licensed, background-checked and their identity easily verified. The friend of a friend of a friend’s ex-mother-in-law’s second husband? You have no idea who they are, and what else — or where else — they might be taking photos in your office. 

The off-the-street snapshot seeker won’t tell you the truth: Unlike the professional photographer, who provides proper backdrop, lighting, makeup and hairstyling help, the friend is going to tell you what they think you want to hear. They will look you in the eye and lie to your face about how well that burnt orange blouse suits you when matched with that flaming red lipstick and every gold chain and medallion your grandma ever gave you, because they love you. The professional photographer’s headshot tones down the noise and puts you front and center to shine. The pretender’s picture is a caricature suitable for the Sunday funnies.

If you’re asked by a friend to use a friend: how to extricate yourself:

Tell them you’ve booked someone: You don’t have to say, “I found a real professional for the job,” which is true, but it’s also a good way to slice a friendship to tiny pieces. Just tell them you’ve made arrangements, thank them and quickly change the subject.

Compromise with a different shoot: Agree to have Shutterbug Sally come in and take photos of something neutral, like the outside of your building, your truck or car fleet, or your staff working at a charity event. It keeps this unknown and unverified person out of your inner sanctum, gives her some work and eases your conscience.

Korey Howell Photography Group has a new name and expanded services; professional hair styling, makeup and precise digital retouching for the headshot that will get you and your business noticed, whether you work around Austin or beyond. Our creative and talented staff combines both technology and artistic design to create your best vision of yourself, whether the session is at your place or ours. Contact us for more information and to schedule an appointment.

All Together NOW: Successful Staff Headshots

All Together NOW: Successful Staff Headshots

You’re proud of your staff, you know they work hard, going in and out of the office on calls and projects all day, getting their jobs done and somehow finding time to be good spouses, parents, and friends at the same time. As a business owner, you want to project the best image possible and have your staff be a part of that professional image. It’s time for everyone to have a corporate-level headshot, but instead of attempting the impossible and rounding up the staff to send to the photographer, you’re considering asking the photographer to come to you.

While the idea may remind your staff of their high school yearbook picture day, here’s eight reasons hosting the photographer at your place will please your employees:

Staff won’t lose productive time: While everyone may be anxious to get to their emails, appointments and phone calls, those tasks can still be accomplished on photo session day. Return emails and phone calls while you wait your turn, and meet with clients online via meeting software.

Doing it all at once saves time: All the headshots all in one day means no one is missed and there’s no waiting to release promotional materials until that one employee who just couldn’t get over to the studio finally makes it there.

Consistency in appearance: You value employee individuality, but when it comes to headshots, you want professional consistency. When the photographer works with everyone on a single day, you have control over the background, lighting and overall look of each shot, in keeping with the image you want for your business.

Turn it into a treat for your staff: And speaking of appearances, make the day special with a hairstylist and makeup artist for your employees. It’s a nice way of saying, “I think you are all special enough to deserve to look your best,” while also gently hinting to a few employees, “You really need a little professional guidance here.”

Headshots in the office provides a familiar, more comfortable setting: The place you spend 40+ hours a week is a relative comfort zone compared to the unknown environment of a professional photography studio. And a relaxed and happy staff is a better-looking staff when you see those results and make a final decision.

Headshots in the office save money: You’re not paying for lost work time (remember, everyone is diligently checking their emails and voicemails while they wait) and mileage. And while you’re paying for the photographer’s time and skills, you’re not paying for the studio space.

Your clients will love the results: As the owner, they’ve seen your photo and recognize you and associate you with your business. Now they have the opportunity to match the names of people they speak to every day with and faces. You’ve just brought business up to a personal level, and introduced your clients to the people you respect and who make you a success.

Staff pride: Your employees take pride in their work, but corporate headshots add ownership, particularly when staff see themselves in brochures, promotional materials and in local media. They show it to friends and family, (AKA potential clients) and say, “That’s me, and that’s where I work.” But what they’re really saying is “I’m proud to show off this photo, because it looks so freaking GREAT! BEST picture of me EVER!”

At Korey Howell Photography Group, we understand the need to save time and get back to the business of running your business. We need only a small amount of your office space for lights and a laptop, and you see the results of our professional work immediately. There’s no waiting for proofs; you can view, edit and select your headshots the same day. Contact us for information about an office headshot session, and find out how we can make your business staff look professional and make you a proud business owner.

5 Benefits of On-Site Headshots

5 Benefits of On-Site Headshots

When it’s time for those corporate headshots to be taken coordination can be the biggest delay, but not if your headshot photographer can come to you. With traditional, in-studio headshots, by the time you give everyone the information about where to be and when the entire photo shoot could be done. It’s hard enough getting everyone on the same page for a lunch meeting, let alone trying to get pictures taken. That’s why on-site headshots are such a fantastic option.  Korey Howell Photography Group offers phenomenal on-site photo shoots so you can sit back and relax – maybe take yourself out for lunch. Here are a few more reasons why you’ll love having headshots taken on-site.

Eliminates Drive Time for a Photography Studio

Driving to and from work every day is enough of a pain at times, especially with Austin traffic. Who wants to add more drive time to their schedule? Having those headshots taken on-site means you don’t need to leave the comfort of your cozy cubicle if you don’t want to. No traffic jams, no time spent out of your busy day commuting, and no extra gas out of your tank. It’s all good.

Gets the Headshots Done Faster

When you need to have headshots of the entire office, it takes up a good deal of time. Usually, people schedule when to go in. Maybe you give a deadline that you want them to have the job completed. Just think of how fast everything will go if you have the photographer come to your place and get everyone’s picture on the same day (or thereabouts depending on how many employees work there). You can have the entire task done and checked off your “to do” list in a day. Now, that’s some power scheduling.

Ensures No One is Missing their Headshot

Ever notice how there’s always that one person who doesn’t make it to the photographers. Maybe they had something come up or they forgot. Whatever the reason was given, it’s a headache when you start reviewing the pictures and realize an employee is missing. When the photographer comes to you, then everyone is there and is a captive “capture.” No need to fret about anyone missing the big event.

Saves Money for Your Company

If you think about it, you’re going to save a bit of money on this deal too. You may have to reimburse your employees for their drive time otherwise. Even if you don’t reimburse them, you still will need to have employees away from work longer than they would need to be if a photographer comes to your office. And as the saying goes, “time is money.” Having the photographer take the pictures at your office will ensure employees are able to stay at work longer doing their job and earning the company money.

You’ll Never Be Late to Your Headshot Appointment

I hate being late places. It’s stressful. Sometimes driving to an appointment has unforeseen obstacles. You could get lost, run into heavy traffic, witness an accident, misjudge the time it takes to get there, and on and on. Once you’re late, it throws your whole day off. Nothing like getting all of out of sync and being stressed. When the photographer comes to your office, you won’t have to worry about being late. You continue working until the photographer arrives and then begin the photo shoot. That is so much more relaxing.

Why stress yourself with leaving the office when you don’t need to. At Korey Howell Photography Group, we bring our equipment to you. We’ll take headshots of the entire office without you needing to do much of anything but smile. Connect with us today to find out how we can make your corporate photos a breeze.

Three Professional Headshot Style Choices That Make a Difference

Three Professional Headshot Style Choices That Make a Difference

Not All Headshots Are Made the Same

As a professional, you understand that you need to have a portrait photograph taken. After all, a headshot is an essential component your marketing plan, potentially appearing in everything from your online profile to your business card to your business’s advertisement in the local paper.

But, if marketing or photography isn’t your first focus, the considerations that go into selecting the right style for your portrait, and the pros and cons of your options, might not be as readily apparent. Believe it or not, everything from the angle, pose, clothing, and background of your photo can affect the impression it gives to the market you’re targeting.

At Korey Howell Photography Group, we specialize in helping you choose the style and composition of a professional portrait best suited to your business and personality. In this article, we will walk you through three important headshot style choices to give you a basis for the decisions you can expect to make. 

Close-Up Headshots vs. Medium-Distance vs. Full-Body Professional Photos

One of the first choices you’ll make is how much your face fills the frame of your professional portrait. A close-up, in which your face fills most of the frame, tends to convey and evoke maximum emotion. Your eyes, after all, are one of your most expressive features, and they dominate close-up photographs. A medium-distance shot, showing your shoulders and at least part of your chest, creates separation between you and the viewer. The effect is to convey a less intensity of emotion, and a little more about who you are as reflected in your personal style and physical presence.

In other words, what you’re wearing and how your body is positioned do more of the work in these shots. Finally, a full-body shot is the most physically-demanding choice. In these portraits, your facial expression (though still important) does the least amount of the work in telling about you, replaced by your choice of posture, outfit, and hand placement, among other things. Done right, a full-body picture can be very dynamic and bold, but you need a professional photographer with experience to get the most out of it. 

Let us show you the best way to use each of these shots for your business needs. Get started here.

Headshot Background Choices for Professional Photos

When you think of portraits or headshots, you may remember sitting in front of that standard blue background on school picture day. A soft, single-color background is certainly a classic, tried-and-true choice for professional portrait photographs. But it’s hardly the only choice. For one thing, in this era of digital photography, your image can be superimposed over just about any two-dimensional background image imaginable. And, you can always choose instead to be photographed in an out-of-studio setting, such as in your office or in front of your office building.

Whatever the background or setting you select, the important thing is that you decide what you want it to say about yourself and your business. Does your background or setting say “fresh and dynamic,” “careful and conservative,” “smart and quirky,” or something else? How you incorporate the background into the headshot matters. For example, a background or setting that remains in focus invites your audience to pay attention to it and the information it communicates. In contrast, an out of focus background suggests a context (office-y, outdoors-y, etc.), but keeps the attention on you.

Color or Black and White for Headshot Photos

Because people tend to associate black and white photography with “art,” and color photography as more casual and accessible, your decision between the two for your professional portrait can say something important to your customers. Black and white (or any monochrome color pallet) tends to feel more serious and distinguished, even when the subject is smiling. It can also solve problems when lighting, background, outfit, or some other element would look jarring in color. Color photography can feel fresher and more exciting but carries more risks because of the need to ensure an eye-pleasing combination of color tones that says the right things about you. 

These are just a few of the style choices that can influence what your headshot says about you. At Korey Howell Photography Group, we’re experts in guiding professionals through the process of choosing the headshot style that best fits their personality and business. Contact us today to set up an appointment.

 

 

Spring Networking Opportunities for Women in the Austin Area

Spring Networking Opportunities for Women in the Austin Area

Warmer weather makes networking so much fun and the women of Austin know how to do things right. These 8 upcoming events will not only help you build genuine and useful relationships; they’ll also help you welcome the arrival of Spring which is the season for optimism, renewal, and growth.

  1. On Tuesday, March 6 from 11 AM to 1 PM, the group, Women Helping Women 2 Network, is having a luncheon meeting in North Austin. This will be an opportunity for like-minded businesswomen to come together and help each other grow and prosper. Be sure to bring your business cards and a friend on this day, and don’t forget to RSVP to let them know if you can attend.
  2. The FABulous Working Ladies is a group with only one goal in mind. They are committed to bringing women together so they can better serve in business, life, and community. Join them for a FAB Ladies Luncheon on Thursday, March 8, from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Make sure you RSVP because they say the Mimosas will be flowing all day.
  3. Texas Women in Business is hosting a Happy Hour on Thursday, March 8th, at 6:00 pm. This will be a relaxed event where you can network and enjoy a glass or two. Make sure to stock up on your business cards because this is an opportunity for you to bond over shared interests and build some great relationships.
  4. On Sunday, March 11 at 9:30 AM, what could be better than attending a Power Women Breakfast and sitting down with the decision-makers, mothers, leaders, wives, innovators, activists and mentors who are inspiring the next generation? This Power Women Breakfast kicks-off other activities that are happening during the SXSW Conference.
  5. The Dell Women’s Entrepreneur Network (DWEN), is sponsoring an event called Women Funding Women on Sunday, March 11, from 12:30 to 3:30 PM. This is where the influencers, investors, and innovators are meeting so they can shine a spotlight on the investments made in women-led companies. There will be a working luncheon and a networking reception where you can make some important connections.
  6. The 2018 Women in Digital Party is where you can meet and mingle with some of the most powerful women in the digital world. This event will be held on Monday, March 12, from 4:30 PM to 8 PM at the Market & Tap Room in Austin. Grab your tickets now because they’re really going fast.
  7. The Chocolate, Coffee, and Wine Lovers is not just your average social meetup group. They strive to have more interaction, more events, more friendships, more connections, and more fun! On Thursday, March 15, from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM, you can join in the fun and attend their ladies luncheon. At this event, they are offering mini-trade show tables if you would like to showcase your business. When you RSVP, just let them know if you would like to reserve a table.
  8. Join the unique circle of ladies in the Austin Women & Wine group as they take a 4 night Western Caribbean cruise. The dates and times are Thursday, April 26, 2018, 4:00 PM to Monday, April 30, 2018, 8:30 AM. Visit their website today and learn how you can make an early deposit of $25 and secure the lowest price for your cabin.

Networking opportunities and Spring just go hand in hand. That’s because the warmer weather makes it a great time to connect with one another, learn something new, and just have some fun! Why not start the Spring season off right with a great photo to put on those business cards? It just makes perfect sense because these events are all about branding and your image is essentially your own unique personal brand. A professional headshot will show a relaxed and confident you while communicating your style and personality. This is what will add that personal touch and help people remember you. To book an appointment, please contact us at Korey Howell Photography today.

Cheap Business Headshots Will Cost You

Cheap Business Headshots Will Cost You

As a small business owner, keeping the lights on, paying employees and keeping clients happy costs money. Most small businesses run on a very slim profit margin; many times between three and seven percent. As a small business owner, your natural inclination is to save money wherever possible – whether it’s buying office supplies in bulk, meeting clients online instead of long-distance traveling and cutting corners on less client-oriented items, like your headshots. But a cheap business headshot can hinder your business and drive away potential clients. Here’s why cheap headshots cost so much, even when you pay so little for them. 

Cheap business headshots look cheap

Cheap business headshots look cheap because they are usually printed on less expensive stock, resulting in a lack of color depth and detail. They don’t reproduce well on your website or in promotional materials, and a potential client holding one in their hands thinks they’ve been handed (literally) a flimsy excuse for an introduction.

They are typically reprinted in a size smaller than the standard headshot size of 8″ x 10″. The smaller size may save you money, but a client may look at it and be reminded of their kids’ school pictures instead of a working professional.

Cheap headshots feature odd backgrounds

A professional headshot normally shows a neutral background; the subject stands out better against it. A cheap headshot attempts to jazz things up with a prettier background. A busy background is not professional; it looks like a 1980s glamour or boudoir shot.

A cheap business headshot’s background not only lacks neutral color best suited to the subject, it often consists of material unsuitable for a photograph, such as poorly draped cloth, blanket material, doors, walls, and cabinets. The client understands you work in an office environment, but portions of that environment should not be seen in your headshot, unless there is a strong and direct link to your business (such as a company selling outdoor, hunting or camping gear) and in that case, a secondary headshot featuring an additional background is acceptable.

Cheap headshot subjects look cheap

Once you cut corners on the photograph, you tend to keep cutting on other aspects, such as hair and makeup. Unless you’re a professional stylist, doing your own primping leads to a less-than-professional, more-like-early-Madonna look. It’s hard to look in the mirror and be honest with yourself when you’re a cheapskate about this cheap shot. You consider it a money-saving move. A client sees the result and wants to post it on social media tagged “Holy throwback, Batman!”

And along with hair and makeup, there’s the jewelry, accessories and the outfit. A professional stylist/photographer works with you to determine the colors, styles and shapes that flatter you. Going cheap means you might thrash through your wardrobe until you find what’s clean, mostly wrinkle-free and basically fits, and not knowing when enough jewelry is enough. 

Cheap business headshots don’t aim for the right angles

Full-face on headshots, with eyes staring directly into the camera, are best reserved for that unfortunate moment when the booking officer at the police station tells you, “Look straight into the camera.” A professional headshot is not a mugshot, therefore it should not look like one or be photographed like one. An experienced photographer knows at a glance if you have a “good” side and if that side needs to be highlighted with additional exposure.

There’s an acceptable amount of head, shoulders, torso, and skin suited for a professional headshot. How much makes the photo depends on the subject’s height and proportions, but a good photographer checks sizing and ensure no undue exposure of body parts, tattoos or piercings occurs. A cheap one goes for whatever the subject has to offer that they love or might tempt/shock a client. That makes a great art house photo, but not one a client is looking at and thinking, “I want to do business with this person.”

Korey Howell Photography specializes in bringing out the best in you and ensuring that your professional headshot is the partner and advocate for your business.  Contact Korey Howell Photography for more information and appointment availability.