1. Choose the right location.

The location of your headshot can make a big difference in the overall look and feel of the image. If you want a professional look, choose a location that is clean and well-lit. If you want a more casual look, you can choose a location that is more personal, such as your home or office.

2. Use the right lighting.

Good lighting is essential for a flattering headshot. Avoid direct sunlight, as it can create harsh shadows. Instead, choose a location with indirect sunlight or artificial lighting. If you're shooting indoors, use a diffuser to soften the light or stand in a door frame, or underpass. You want a large light source (ie. sun) that has been softened or diffused.

3. Use a tripod.

A tripod is essential for keeping your shots steady. This will help you avoid blurry photos and ensure that your headshot is in focus.

4. Use a high-quality camera.

A high-quality camera is not essential for taking great headshots, but it can help. If you have a DSLR camera, use it. If you don't have a DSLR camera, you can use your smartphone. Just make sure you use the highest quality setting on your phone.

5. Use a remote shutter release.

A remote shutter release is a great way to avoid camera shake. This is especially important if you're using a tripod.

6. Experiment with different poses.

There is no one right pose for a headshot. Experiment with different poses until you find one that you feel comfortable with and that flatters your features.

7. Expression range

Experiment with exercising the boundaries of expression. Many times the shots that become the keepers are right after you relax out of a big smile or an overly serious expression. Play around with intensity levels by looking into the camera. It's just you and your camera so have fun with it. You can always delete what you don't like.


  • Avoid trying to micro-manage your expression. ie. forcing eyes more open, adjusting eyebrows, and creating perfect symmetry with a smile. This will produce unnatural-looking results. Instead, break away from the camera often. Shake it out, relax, and then look back to the camera then take the shot.

8. Editing your photos.

Once you've taken your headshots, you can edit them using a photo editing software program. Unless you're proficient using retouching software like photoshop, I would suggest hiring a professional or leaving your image as is. One-click apps that do retouching are not quite good enough...yet. Contact us if you would like help retouching your photos.

By following these tips, you can take professional-looking headshots on your own.