Branding V.S. Head Shots | Lab House Studios Education

Whether you’re launching a new company or have been in business for years, what people see is often their very first impression of your brand. What that means is that, often times, your images do way more “talking” than the actual content you have spent so much time creating. Strong, clean, simplistic images can help immediately connect your consumer to who you are and what you can offer them.

Take it from us, it can be daunting to figure out where to begin. We always suggest starting with a vision/branding board to help you conceptualize your ideas. You must understand and get really clear on what you want before you even try to communicate that vision with someone else. Vision/branding boards can be created via Pinterest or with old magazines clippings. If you don’t know how to create a Pinterest thread, try looking for a company that is similar to your brand and go from there. To view sample vision/branding boards, please visit:

Once you’re clear on your vision, start getting clear on what is important to you in a photographer. If you don’t have a personal relationship with a professional photographer, take your time in looking for one that has the time and is willing to work with you through this crucial process. Share your vision board or, at the very least, three keywords, colors, or symbols that best describe, represent, or symbolize your business. With such a large investment, taking these extra steps to demonstrate who you are will help ensure that your photographer is capable of capturing your essence.

Now that you’ve found your photographer, start with the first and the most important image: YOU.

Your head shot is a way for people to connect to you. Think about a time when you saw an exceptional professional head shot -- what did you feel about that person? You may have thought they were sharp, put-together, capable, talented, and someone who always gets the job done. In comparison to grainy, poorly-lit photographs, which may leave you questioning someone’s level of care, professionality, and otherwise, a strong headshot sets the tone for potential consumers. They want to feel confident in the service you are providing, while also getting a glimpse into your personality.

So, let's define a Head Shot:

A head shot is a portrait that realistically demonstrates your appearance with the focus being on your face. The head shot includes your face and/or upper body for the purposes of identifying you. This image can also be used on your business cards or as a profile picture. For the image to truly be a head shot, you should not display any part of your body below your torso area.

Take a look at the image to your left. Because she’s a lawyer, we wanted her look to radiate confidence and assertiveness. Her shoulders are square, her back is straight displaying good posture, and her facial expression is soft, yet serious.

Now, let’s define Branding Portraits:

Branding portraits are a collage of images that show what you do that elevates your character and depicts your brand in an environment that represents your vision. Authenticity is very important because you need to be able to convey who you are and what you're selling (product or services) using images.

These next group of images are some examples from a branding photoshoot. The client has a clothing company titled Chic & Saved. The shoot helped symbolize how stylish you can be while representing your faith and beliefs. So, all her marketing materials were designed to match the look and feel of her clothing- street/urban flair! As you can see, these images evoke a clear message on the brand, its services, and even a bit of its mission.

The client’s branding session also included photographs that are versatile and multiuse as shown below. These photos, which show more of her brand and less of her, can also be used to market on social media pages:

When I’m working with my clients, I challenge them to define who they are. What’s your story? What are you trying to say? What do you want your client to feel?

Then, there’s always the question, “How do I get started?” Do your research! Look for a photographer that you find is similar to your style and show them your vision board via Pinterest. Then, price out everything you need to execute your vision. Next, book your photoshoot!

I know you’re probably nervous, but don’t be! Just be authentically you throughout the process and everything will fall right into place.

Have more questions? Feel free to reply to this thread or leave a comment!

Kyara, Owner

Lab House Studios


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