CHOOSING OUTFITS THAT ARE RIGHT FOR YOU
I don’t believe there’s a one-size-fits-all solution for the photos you share in your business (and the outfits that you wear in them). What works for you might not work for someone else.
When we plan your photo shoot, we’ll work together to find the right outfits, and I wanted to share the tips that often come up in these discussions.
TIPS FOR CHOOSING WHAT TO WEAR TO YOUR PERSONAL BRAND PHOTO SHOOT
Wear clothes that you love and that make you feel good. Just because some online guide has told you ‘what to wear to your personal brand photo shoot’ doesn’t mean you have to follow the advice. If you don’t listen to what feels instinctively right for you and your brand, there’s a risk you won’t love your photos and you will avoid using them.
Choose colours that suit your skin and hair colour. While it can be great to include your brand colours in your outfits, it’s not a must. I personally think it’s more important to prioritise the colours that look great on you, and just make sure they don’t clash with your visual branding.
If you are going for a light and airy look, choose light, neutral colours. Light colours against a light/neutral coloured background can create a beautiful, harmonious look. (Think, white or light grey knitted sweater against a white snowy background, for example. Or a white, cream or pastel coloured dress in the sandy colours of a cosy, cobblestone street in a French village.)
Choose clothes that fit you well – not too big and not too tight. If you feel self-conscious, it can be easy to lean on baggy clothes, but then you risk losing all shape and your silhouette won’t look like ‘you’. If your clothes are too tight and the fabric is pulling at the buttons, try going up a size (otherwise there’s a risk the straining fabric will bother you in the final photos).
Bring a variety of outfits to your photo shoot to capture different feelings, stories and to give more variety to your photos. One idea can be to aim for at least one outfit for each ‘story’ we are capturing. Since you will most likely be sharing quite a few images on social media, it’s great if you’re not wearing the same clothes in each photo. It can be a selection of: business, casual, relaxed and cosy. Whatever feels most natural for you and that suit your business and way of working. Even just changing a top or blazer or adding or taking away jewellery can create a totally different look.
Accessories can add variety and personality to your outfits, so it can be great to include things like jewellery, scarves etc.
Embrace how your body looks in the outfits you choose. We all come in different shapes and sizes and every part of us deserves to be loved and respected. (I don’t mean to sound like a walking cliché. I mean this 100%.)
As opposed to a studio portrait session where you will pose and stay quite still, these sessions will focus on capturing natural moments and your authentic body language. As you move naturally, your clothes are going to move with you. This is how clothes work and it can sometimes contribute to a more natural, realistic result. I’ll pay attention to the details and adjust if I think it’s necessary, but in the moment, I’ll choose expression over perfection every time. Avoid outfits that are unnecessarily fussy, that are going to distract you, suck energy and make you feel less than amazing.
Black close to your face can cause the colour to drain from some people’s faces and emphasise dark circles under the eyes. If this happens to you, you might want to avoid black tops. (Some of my favourite client photos include black outfits, though, so you need to decide what works for you.)
Blazers and suits can be great for a more corporate look, but if you never wear blazers, suits or high heels in real life, don’t feel like you need to wear them for your photos. ‘Professional’ can look any way you want it to look. (If you want to wear a blazer but feel that it’s too ’corporate’ for you, maybe pair it with a t-shirt and jeans for a more casual look.)
Wearing high heels can help to give you a confident posture.
Sneakers (like Converse, for example) can give your photos a casual look, can help you feel more relaxed and give you the freedom to move in a way that feels more authentic for you.
If your brand is bright and colourful, and you love bold patterns, incorporate all of these in your photo shoot outfits. But bold patterns and logos can be distracting and tend to age photos faster than more neutral outfits (which means you get sick of the photos faster and are limited in how you can use them). So just keep this in mind when you’re choosing your outfits (and as I said, it all depends on you and your brand).
GET PROFESSIONAL HELP CHOOSING YOUR OUTFITS
I work closely with a talented professional stylist, Carolina Henning, who can help you choose outfits that are perfect for you. You can choose styling as an add-on to any or all of your sessions.
A session with Carolina starts with an interview and needs analysis, including a colour and body shape analysis. You’ll discuss the aims for the photo session and the stories and locations that we’ve planned. Besides being a wonderful person with a talent for seeing what will bring out the best in each person, Carolina also has a great understanding of branding and what will work well for your photos and your business.
When she has a clear picture of you, your needs and your budget, you will either discuss outfits you already have or you can go shopping together so she can select outfits for you to try on.
THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP I WANT TO GIVE YOU
I want you to look and feel amazing in your photos and I will do everything in my power to make this happen.
But remember this.
The point of taking your personal brand photos is to spread your message, grow your business and reach the clients whose lives will be changed by working with you. Your dream clients aren’t booking you because of how you look, what size you are, or for the clothes you wear. Your mission is so much bigger than that.