HEADSHOTS. Why is that word so scary?! I know I am a talented portrait photographer. I specialize in mitzvahs and families, and often will do a mitzvah pre-shoot, with mostly solo shots of the teen and a few with his/her family for a whole hour. I know how to capture a personality. But say 'headshot', and all of a sudden I feel like I'm out of my wheelhouse, and feel like there's some external expectation I may not live up to, whereas I'm an otherwise confident photographer. What is it about a headshot that is so off-putting, where really, it's just a great portrait?!
And what makes a great portrait, you may wonder? Well, in addition to lighting, composition, and focus, a great portrait captures the personality of the subject. A great portrait is real. It makes you feel something when you look at it. You feel a connection to the subject.
When scheduling this session, Mom asked if I could do that. I said, well, sure, I'm capable. People don't typically hire me for that, but yes, I can do it. Mom sent me some blog posts she’d found about theatrical headshots which really helped me focus. They spoke about different types of headshots for different character types.
So when Ellie got in front of my camera, I tried asking her to think of different things, with different character types in mind, like serious, spunky, mischevious, or bubbly. And it was amazing how her expression would change from one frame to the next. After the first few shots, she got the hang of it and started varying her expressions all on her own! It was an amazing exchange of energy, and I couldn’t be more thrilled with these portraits… headshots… I don’t care what you call them. All I know is I’m in love!
We even got to capture a few shots with her siblings and mom. We finished with brother Josh entertaining himself by taking a ride on the car door as it automatically opened and closed. This totally entertained me too!