„Believe in your flyness.
Conquer your shyness.“
How to get your the best images of yourself
I would never ever have dreamed of one day quoting Kanye West. But yes. Here it is. A blog post simple about you, yourself and how to get your best self into images. But before I dive into this, let me just jump back a bit to tell you how I ended up writing this blog post about how you get yourself some amazing pictures of yourself for your web presence. And this time I will talk about web presence rather than Social Media channels. Because your personal branding happens in more places than just on Social Media.
Getting some pictures of yourself
In general, there are different ways to get Personal Branding pictures for your web presence. The easiest way: Hire a professional photographer, meet up with him or her, talk about what is unique about your personal brand and then have a shooting. Although I would rather recommend having three different shootings because unless you are a professional model: Shootings can be quite exhausting for you. (Who would have guessed?)
Another way to go
If for a reason you do not want to hire a professional photographer for Personal Branding photography here is what you can also do: Get yourself a good friend and head to the city. That’s what I did. Basically, because I wanted to still have a hand on all of the creative things and also because I wanted to try out different things. Bonus point: As a photographer, it is super important to get a feeling for how clients are feeling in front of the camera. So being the model myself and see what is working and what not – that’s actually walking a mile in someone else’s shoes.
How to have a photography session with a friend
Whenever I am planning a Personal Branding photography session I usually have a three steps approach: First, I meet up with the future client. Not just to talk about expectations but also to get a better understanding of the other person. It might seem intrusive but it is surprising how many people only have a very fuzzy understanding of what they want to represent. Therefore this step is the most important one.
Find out what the core values of your personal brand are
An example: You want to appear strong and powerful. What is strong and powerful for you? Is it a thing of your physique like having defined muscles? Is it the environment that gives you the image of being powerful like being surrounded by modern Frankfurt bank district architecture? Is it the look of the picture like being photographed from a frog perspective and using mainly steel-blue colors?
The first step: Become a clear picture of what you want to be present in your pictures. Then the next step for me is to prepare the shooting and the last one the actual shoot.
Get your outfits in line and find a great friend
The good thing about having a friend taking pictures of you? If you choose the right friend for your own personal branding shooting you get two advantages. Firstly you feel comfortable with this friend. At least if you choose a friend that lets you be super silly in front of the camera. Remember Kanye: To get in front of the camera you need to conquer your shyness.
Secondly, a friend with a good eye tells you if your outfit is not so flattering or if your pose makes you look like you pull trucks for fun. But in a way that you can work with the feedback in a good way. Also, friends give us a good feeling and more confidence.
So get that friend that a) can handle a camera, b) gives you a good feeling about yourself and c) but isn’t too shy to give you honest feedback.
Then: Get your outfits. For my personal branding shooting, I had three different outfits but only wore two. Which were enough for me.
Before and then – Final steps for your personal branding session
Before you hit the roads and have your friend with his or her camera ready – always make a list of two things first. Poses and places will be a very important factor in your success. So do some location scouting and make a list of places that you think can work as a good backdrop for your photos. I started to create my own Pinterest board for that. If you want to get some inspiration head over there.
Then make a list or better create a Pinterest board for the poses you want to strike. That might sound strange but especially when you don’t have a fulltime job as a model or already plenty of posing experiences it really helps to have a visual in front of you. You get inspiration and when you get stuck you can just imitate someone and work from there. So it really makes your life a lot easier.
Grab your camera
Now head out and take some great personal branding images. And tell me about your experiences in the comments. Did everything go well? Where did you shoot your pictures? Was the weather good in your favor? Drop me a line.