Are you trying to take your own headshot but do not know how to go about it?
Now, ditch those expensive studios and professional photographers.
Unlock the secrets of taking professional headshots with your iPhone.
This guide will teach you everything you need to know to capture the perfect professional headshot.
What Is a Professional Headshot, and Why Do You Need It?
A professional headshot is a polished photograph focusing on an individual’s face, conveying competence and approachability.
It is crucial for personal branding, job searches, and online profiles.
It establishes a strong visual presence, making a compelling first impression professionally.
People often use professional headshot in resumes to make them more personable. It can be your first impression on a potential employer and you should try to make the best of it.
Things To Consider Before Taking A Headshot
Before you click that shutter, consider these crucial elements:
Purpose: Clarify the headshot’s intent. Opt for professional attire on LinkedIn, while a more relaxed vibe may suit social media.
Lighting: Prefer natural light for even illumination; avoid direct sunlight that creates harsh shadows.
Background: Opt for simplicity to keep the focus on your face, avoiding distracting elements.
Expression: Convey confidence and approachability with a genuine smile or neutral demeanor.
Location and environment: Select a backdrop that aligns with your image, exuding professionalism.
Clothing: Choose attire reflecting your personal brand and professionalism. Still, if you are confused and clueless about what to wear for your professional headshot, don’t look any further.
Hair and Makeup: Maintain a polished appearance, avoiding overly distracting elements.
Pose: Tilt your head slightly and maintain a good posture for a flattering angle.
Confidence: Relax and be authentic; genuine confidence shines through in impactful headshots.
Format: iPhones automatically take pictures in a file format called “.HEIC,” which may not be the best for professional headshots at home. To make it better, go to your camera settings and change the format to the most compatible one.
Steps To Take A Headshot From Your iPhone
Lighting: Your best friend
Forget harsh overhead lights! The key to a stunning headshot is all about embracing soft, diffused natural light.
Think sunlight dappled through clouds, gently filtered by a silk curtain, or bouncing playfully off a big white wall.
Direct sunbeams are a no-go; they’ll leave you squinting and cast unflattering shadows.
Befriend the window: Large windows are your golden ticket. Stand directly facing it, letting the light gently bathe your face. Experiment with different windows and times of day to find your perfect haven.
Outdoors works too: If windows are scarce, venture out under the cool comfort of shade. Seek refuge under a tree or awning, avoiding harsh, direct sunlight.
Remember these golden rules:
- Face the light source: For optimal results, position yourself opposite the light.
- Get close: Don’t stand too far, or your photo might turn grainy.
- Embrace the blur: If shadows are bothering you, try a diffuser like a silk scarf or sheer curtain.
With these tips and a little practice, your headshot will radiate confidence and professionalism. So go forth, embrace the diffused light, and let your true self shine!
Bonus tip: Don’t be afraid to experiment with backgrounds! A clean wall, a lush garden, or even a vibrant cityscape can add personality; just ensure good lighting and contrast between your hair/clothing and the background.
Posture: Pose like a Pro
Maintain a strong and confident posture by envisioning a gentle pull from the crown of your head. Keep your shoulders back and spine straight, avoiding stiffness—remember, you’re not a soldier but the star of the show!
For a natural smile, soften your face, allowing your eyes to crinkle authentically. Establish a connection by making eye contact with the camera, turning your head slightly, or shifting your weight for added dynamism.
Smiling is a bonus; if genuine, it radiates warmth, but a confident smirk or a neutral expression can be equally powerful.
Your headshot is about showcasing your unique energy, so relax, have fun, and let your personality shine through the lens. You’ve got this!
- Blur the Lines with Portrait Mode:
This awesome feature in the iPhone 7 Plus and above blurs the background, adding a professional touch. Stand 6 feet from the background for optimal effect.
iPhone 13 and later, try Cinematic mode for a dynamic, Hollywood-style effect!
- Find Your Focus:
Keep the focus on your face, not the background or other distracting stuff.
Proper focus elevates your headshot from “selfie” to “polished portrait,” making it perfect for professional profiles, online portfolios, or even social media updates.
So, tap that screen to lock focus on your face and let your iPhone camera work its magic!
- Take Control of the Light:
Mastering exposure is the key to a standout headshot! On your iPhone, tap your face for a yellow box with a sun icon.
Swipe up to brighten shadows or down to balance bright spots. Proper exposure reveals eye details, enhances your skin’s glow, and makes you pop against the background.
Let your iPhone’s exposure work its magic for a headshot that truly shines!
Shake-Free Shutter with Timer:
The timer is your simple yet mighty tool for clear, confident, and shake-free portraits that showcase your best self!
Gridlines for the Win:
Perfect your headshots with gridlines on your iPhone! Activate them in Settings > Camera > Grid for a 3×3 guide.
Center your subject, follow the rule of thirds for dynamic composition, and keep your horizons straight. Gridlines ensure balanced, professional, and confidently composed headshots.
Front-Facing Camera: Handy But Not Always Dandy:
Resist the selfie cam urge for headshots! The front-facing camera lens may distort features with lower resolution.
Flip to the rear camera for higher quality, clearer focus, and natural perspectives. Elevate your image with Portrait Mode for artistic effects, because professional headshots deserve more than a selfie.
Don’t Be a One-Shot Wonder:
Don’t hesitate, and limit yourself to one shot. Take multiple shots so that you can choose the best one out of them.
Now that you’ve captured that perfect headshot with soft, natural light, it’s time to add the finishing touches! Let’s transform your headshot photo quality into a professional photo that shines.
Crop for impact: Frame your face, leaving just enough space for breathing room, and ditch any distracting background elements. A sharp focus on you is key!
Master the light: Adjust the exposure for a balanced brightness, ensuring your features gleam without looking washed out. Remember, soft light is your friend, but a touch of tweaking can make it shine even brighter.
Strike the right color balance: A subtle adjustment might be all it takes to banish unwanted yellow tones or enhance your natural skin glow. Play with the warmth and coolness to find the perfect balance that flatters your complexion.
Elevate with Portrait Lighting: If you’re using an iPhone 11 or later, unleash the magic of Portrait Lighting! Experiment with Studio Light for a classic look, Contour Light for sculpted definition, or Mono Light for a dramatic black and white touch.
If any of these sound too complicated, a great place to start is using the “AUTO” adjust setting when editing the photo.
Unlock the full potential of your headshots with these model-specific iPhone tips:
- iPhone 13 and later: Opt for Cinematic mode to infuse a dynamic, Hollywood-style flair into your shots.
- iPhone 11 and later: Customize the Portrait mode lighting effect post-capture for added flexibility.
- iPhone 7 Plus and later: Experiment with Studio Light, Contour Light, or Mono Light effects for diverse and distinct looks.
Use AI Headshot Generators
If you find this entire process of taking your own headshot complicated, a great alternative is to use AI Headshot Generators.
You completely skip getting ready and striking the right pose to get the perfect picture.
All you need is a few pictures of yourself to feed to the headshot generator and it will create professional headshots for you using AI within hours.
I love using these as it is so much easier and takes a lot less effort on my part.
If you are looking to edit these headshots further, you can use AI image tools like Dezgo to further customize your headshots.
Taking professional headshots can be expensive if you hire professionals.
However, you can take great headshots using your iPhone.
You just need to find the right lighting and settings to get the most out of it but you can get some amazing results with a iPhone.
So if you’re looking for an easier way to take professional headshots, it’s sitting right in your pocket.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Can I take a good headshot with an iPhone?
The answer is yes. You don’t often need a DSLR or a great camera to take the right photos. If you have an iPhone, that is enough to take a good headshot. With the right techniques and postures, you are good to go.
How do I take a headshot on my iPhone by myself?
Use Focus and Axis Grids to position yourself correctly. You can use tripods to take a still picture.
Is a selfie OK for a headshot?
Surely you can take a selfie headshot, but the results are not great, or, recommended.
How should I pose for a headshot picture?
Keep your back straight, but make sure you don’t look stiff. Since the photo is professional, the right posture is important.
Do people smile in headshots?
Yes and no, anything that makes you comfortable but a forced smile is not what we need. Just be comfortable and confident.