Last week I wrote a blog post on one of the biggest lessons I learned when I had my own personal branding session…it was a real a-ha moment for me and you can read about it here. Let’s just say I totally get how apprehensive you may feel when thinking about getting in front of the camera. Anyway, I thought it would be helpful to share how I prepared and planned for my session. Spending a bit of time planning and thinking about the types of images I wanted really helped make my session productive and efficient.
- Create an Inspiration Board: When I had my photo session, I created a private board on Pinterest with ideas and inspiration to share with my photographer. I invited her to the board and together we collaborated on ideas that we thought would work for my shoot. It was really helpful for us to share a visual idea of what it was I was going for and the types of photos I hoped to capture.
- Think Through the Details: Thinking through locations, props, and overall style will save you time and energy. In my case I created a shot list which included me at my desk, a few images of me walking down the street, a photo with negative space that I could add text to and some of me looking through photos. As far as props were concerned, I wanted to incorporate my computer, my dog and my iPhone.
- Decide on Your Wardrobe: Plan for at least a couple of looks and be sure to incorporate your brand colors. I knew I wanted a casual look and pulled the light green/blue color on my website as the color of my sweater. I also layered with a black jacket to give a different look.
- Personal Grooming: So if you are of a certain age where your gray hairs come creeping in, be sure to hit the salon a week or two in advance. Also remember this is not the time to go for a completely new look. Sometimes making a drastic change to your appearance (like hair color or style) can be fun but it can also be a bit jarring. A manicure is also always a great idea especially if you are going to be showing your hands in the photos (I wish I would have remembered to do that).
- Relax and Have Fun: Ok, now I know this may be hard to do and your first few images may feel a bit awkward and stiff, but just know it will get better as you go along. Your photographer is going to do her best to make you feel at ease and that you have fun. For me, the key is to talk. Throughout my session I chatted away with my photographer….sharing experiences, interests and just idle chatter made our session feel more like an afternoon spent with a friend.
I hope you found these tips helpful. If you have any questions about personal brand photography, I’m happy to answer them or if you’d like to receive a free personal brand photography checklist please click here.