If you are in the thick of job hunting and submitting applications to potential employers, you are probably also looking to freshen the photo that goes with your resume or your LinkedIn profile. A good headshot is one of the things that help make a good first impression with potential bosses.
The good thing is that you can take an impressive and professional-looking headshot using your mobile phone. Read on to know how you can do this.
1. Set to High-Resolution Mode
You can get a professional-looking headshot with high-resolution images. Most phones come with high-resolution modes with enough megapixels for taking good detail and light, especially if you are shooting during the day. Simply switch your settings to High Resolution before shooting.
2. Use natural lighting
Shooting near a window during the day is the best way to get even lighting so you can avoid using artificial lighting. This is because artificial lighting can produce unnatural color tints, shadows, and highlights that can make your photo look cheap and amateurish.
Natural lighting allows you to get even lighting without unruly shadows and highlights that may require more work to edit during post-processing. You can easily do this by shooting near a window or opening the door and windows to let more light in.
As much as possible, avoid using the flash on your phone. Opt for natural light or a reflector instead.
3. Choose a blank and clean background
Professional headshots are taken to emphasize what you look like and present you in a professional light. This is the reason why it is important to choose a clean, uncluttered, and blank background so that nothing distracts from you as the subject of the headshot.
If you can’t find a blank wall, opt for a corner that is clean and clutter-free and use the Portrait mode on your phone to slightly blur out the background.
4. Use a tripod
A headshot looks more professional if shot by someone else. If this is a DIY headshot project, then you need to use a tripod or a makeshift tripod so you can avoid taking awkward-looking selfies. Most phones have various Timer modes which means you can take easy portraits even if you are not holding your camera. Better yet, ask a friend to take these photos for you.
Using a tripod or having someone else take your photos is also important because you want to use the rear-facing cameras on most phones, which have a higher resolution and can take in more detail.
5. Don’t shoot straight from the front
To avoid taking mugshot-like photos, avoid shooting straight from the front. If your camera is in front of you, pose with your body turned slightly to one side, while keeping your face aimed at the camera. Not only will this give you a more slender silhouette, but it also creates angles to add a more interesting dimension to your headshot.
When posing, focus on poses that are comfortable yet confident. Make sure your shoulders and your chin are up and keep your core gently engaged so that your spine stays straight. Laugh, and jump up and down a few minutes if you feel tense.
You can use basic headshot poses, such as arms folded or one hand in the pocket while leaning casually against the wall, or any other pose that is natural and comfortable for you.
These are just a few tips for taking a decent headshot using your phone. Keep these tips in mind if you need fresh new headshots for your social media pages or for your next job application.