- The Power of Expression -
Does your current Headshot have LIKEABILITY?
Facial expressions are a universal language. Through them, we can express love, happiness, pain, and all the other emotions on the spectrum. Your expression is what engages people to want to know you, to think you are interesting, or if it’s not a good headshot, you may just look fake or boring; which begs the question:
Are you effectively communicating through your current headshot?
Whether you are in the corporate world or own a business, likeability is a critical factor for building relationships and being successful. Likeability is showing off the characteristics that make you easy to like and draw people towards you. Your headshot is a powerful foundational tool for your likeability factor. First impressions are real, emotional and lasting so put maximum effort towards creating a good one.
There’s a long list of character attributes that we all express on a daily basis. Naturally, not all these expressions belong in a professional headshot. A professional headshot photographer will guide you through the expressions you want key in on and express in your headshot. And keep in mind, no Zoolander folks!
A headshot is all about communicating effectively in the blink of an eye. Even though that conversation takes place almost instantly, it’s the facial expression that draws people in.
Your expression is the most powerful element when capturing your headshot.
The two key components to get that knockout expression in your headshots are the Eyes and the Mouth.
Confidence comes from the Eyes.
When a person is scared, their eyes open wide like a deer in the headlights. When a person is confidant, their eyes naturally narrow. We want to show off that intriguing look in your eyes you get when you think about something you are really passionate about, that’s the money shot! That’s the look that attracts people to you. It’s not the deer in the headlight look for sure. It’s a genuine look paired with charming personality.
In order to create a confidant look, you need to narrow your eyes. Instead of squinting, you need to master Peter Hurley’s squinch. Squinching means, “to narrow the distance between your pupils and your bottom eyelids.” So, what we need to do is raise the bottom lids without moving the top lids. This can be mastered through practice, just think of Tyra Banks’ smize!
Approachability comes from your Mouth.
A genuine smile in a headshot is so inviting it can make you feel good just by looking at it, and that is exactly the kind of response we want from your headshot. It’s a genuine connection to keep us looking at the image and say, “I want to get to know this person. They look like someone I'd have a great time with!”
In headshot photography we have the 3 S’s: Serious, Smirk and Smile. They each have their purposes dependent on the look you are going for.
There’s a difference between frowning and being serious. You can still pull off a serious approachable expression by relaxing the mouth and really working on the eyes. Being serious doesn't mean your expression should be blank in the eyes.
There can be a lot of power in a smirk. If the warm friendliness of a smile isn’t what you are going for, but you still want to convey a look of being approachable with a lot of power behind it, the smirk is a great expression to try. Not everyone can pull off an approachable smirk, but when you got it, you really got it!
Nothing says approachable like a genuine smile. Living in a world of digital media and social platforms, people see your picture way before they ever meet you. It’s a major factor to business professionals these days that they leave their clients with the impression that they are trustworthy, approachable and competent in what they do. A genuine smile paired with good posing gives potential clients the trust and professionalism they are looking for.
Most of all, headshots should be genuine, with the authentic look you want your clients and business partners to see. So, take a cue from a pro and take the best pictures possible. It’s a good investment to put your best face forward.
To learn more about headshot pricing and scheduling a session, check out this page.
I'm a professional Headshot and Portrait Photographer located in Castle Rock, CO. My headshot style is clean, modern and minimal. I urge professionals to showcase their branding with a professional headshot where the focus is on expression and image. With a background in graphic design, branding and marketing, I bring all these elements together to provide my clients a stellar headshot that supports their brand identity.