How To Analyse Your Headshot – Part 4
Wearing the wrong clothes in your headshot is another common mistake, they can distract the eye of the viewer away from your face. As I’ve talked about in the previous 3 parts of How To Analyse Your Headshot the eyes of the viewer should be focused on your face. Sometimes you make a definite statement with what you wear. What you wear is an integral part of the message you want to send with your headshot. In general terms, it’s best to keep the clothes plain. Jazzy patterns, strong stripes, fussy necklines and gaudy ties all distract the eye viewer. In the same way as large, distinctive pieces of jewellery will draw attention away.
What are some of the other things that can affect your headshot? For instance, what does your body language say in the photograph? Does it say I’m relaxed, does it say I’m formal or does your photo project an impression of being tense and uncomfortable? The position of you
Can the background in your headshot make a difference?
Obviously, it can and will affect the overall feel of your headshot. If the background is busy with stripes or strong geometric patterns such as a wall or a green bush or tree in bright sunlight it will. All of these backdrops can distract the eye of the viewer away from your face. And remember your face is an important part of the photograph.
It’s much better to use a plain simple backdrop that adds to the feeling of the headshot rather than a backdrop that dominates your headshot. This doesn’t mean that all headshots should be taken in a studio against a seamless backdrop, far from it. Simply using our eyes and our imagination we can repurpose surfaces to use as a backdrop. For instance, we could easily use a white or plain coloured office wall. Another technique photographers use is to make the background blurred and out of focus. You see this a lot in sports photography. It allows the subject to be separated from the background.
Several times over the last few blog posts I’ve mentioned the importance of being in control of your message. Take a quick look at the video frame below. We know the guy in the blue checked shirt is the focus of the of the frame. But we can’t help our eyes being drawn to the man in the top left corner. It’s natural to do this, we have inquisitive minds.
Follow the advice in the last 4 posts about how to analyse your headshot and you’ll have a much better understanding of the power of your headshot and the message it can send.