Have you ever had professional headshots done by an photographer? How ’bout business cards – do you have some? You should – especially if you are a blogger. But even if you aren’t a blogger, I think it’s a very smart thing to do. It’s just a great way to present yourself to the world.
When I went to get my headshots done, I have to admit, I felt a little silly and a bit vain, but I have to say, I am SO glad I did it. I have used those puppies a ton! And not just in relation to my blog – I use them at work, in my personal social media, for church newsletters, just about everything you can think of. Any time someone needs a photo of me, I have a clear and professional-looking pose to give them.
It’s almost like having my own little business card. Well, I actually DO have business cards, but it’s like an electronic business card. Which reminds me, I should think about adding my headshot TO my business card! I do ADORE my business cards – they are turquoise and zebra print to match my blog. If you’ve been to a blog conference in the last 5 years, you’ve probably gotten one from me!
A note about my business cards – like me, they are quite unique. You want a design that represents your personality and I’m kind of flashy and sassy, so my business cards really represent that. But you know what they don’t say? A lot of personal information. Most people automatically put their full name, address, and phone number on their business card. I don’t do that. For one thing, I may hand these out to 50 people at a blog conference, and I’ve known most of them for less than 5 minutes. There is enough information on there for them to contact me (and I can always write my cell on the back if I want to), but not enough for them to stalk me if they turn out to be a nutball. That sounds a little mean, but I think it’s pretty smart. In the social media world, you need to be just a tiny bit cautious.
Now maybe you are thinking you don’t need a business card. I don’t know if that is true. Way back when, they used to be pretty expensive and a hassle to get, but now there are sites like Vistaprint where you can get them almost for free. Even if you are “just a Mom”, it’s kind of cool to be able to give a card to a new friend.
When one of my nieces was about 11 and starting to babysit, I gave her a set of her own business cards as a birthday gift. She was thrilled and gave them out to everyone she knew, and it got her some great babysitting jobs. I had business cards made up for my Scout Troop and I carry them everywhere I go. Whenever I find a likely boy that is the right age for our Scout Troop, I can give that card to him to give to his parents. It has the Scoutmaster’s info on it, the times and place we meet, and a little background about our Troop. It’s just a great tool to have and if you are a blogger, it is an absolute MUST.
But back to headshots. Surprisingly, they were not terribly difficult or expensive to get. My friend Ashlee from Ashlee Marie has a sister Chelsea Peterson who is a professional photographer. Every couple of months, she offers a deal to a group of local bloggers – a 15 minute photoshoot for $35. Then she meets us at some cool location around town and we take turns getting our shots done. Eeeasy peesey!
And I think she does a terrific job, don’t you? Keep in mind, I do NOT photograph well. Neither did my mother, but as an actress (she and my Dad and I were extras in several movies and she had a few bit parts here and there) she had some professional shots done in her later years, and those are some of my favorite photos of her.
Now, let’s clarify what a headshot is. It isn’t one of those glamour shots that were so popular back in the 80’s. Those were pretty cool at the time, but they were prone to piling on so much makeup and hairspray that you just didn’t look anything like yourself! A headshot should definitely look like YOU – just you on a day when you are really well rested and looking your best.
That’s why you need a good photographer – they know all the tricks to get the lighting just right, minimize any double chins, or muffin tops, put you in front of a background that is not going to be distracting, and then they can crop and edit the finished shots into something that looks great. Hopefully, they will give you some good tips on clothing and makeup. Pay attention to what they say. You don’t want something too busy or distracting, and you want just enough makeup that you look natural, but pretty.
I’m interested – do you have headshots or a business card? What do you think about getting some?