The Best Headshot Photographers in the Bay Area

The Best Headshot Photographers in the Bay Area

professional headshots

While Headshots by Chickpea offers photo sessions to create the perfect professional headshot for your business or career, I understand that you may want to consider all your options before choosing the right photographer for you. That’s why I’ve compiled this list of four of the best headshot photographers in the Bay Area.

Two Dudes Photo

Two Dudes Photo is a unique studio specializing in headshots, event photography, and videography. They provide professional headshot photo booths for trade shows and have worked with major companies like Google, Apple, and Microsoft.

Ben Krantz

Ben Krantz is a headshot and corporate photographer, who has been snapping pictures of professionals and talent for almost 20 years. A film and theatrical producer, Ben has photographed everyone from high-level executives at Apple and Facebook to local small business owners.

SRK Headshot Day

SRK Headshot Day is a fast, affordable way to get a professional headshot for your website or social media. This popup headshot experience appears at convenient locations throughout Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area. Companies and groups needing headshot photos can even set up their own Corporate Headshot Day.

Portraits to the People

Sarah Deragon, the owner and self-taught professional photographer at Portraits to the People specializes in natural light images in creative locations. She photographs everyone from entrepreneurs and small business owners to artists and creatives, and her work has been featured in Oprah Magazine, the Huffington Post, Refinery 29, and Bust Magazine.

Ready to update your image?

Why Job Seekers Over 50 MUST Have a Professional Headshot

Why Job Seekers Over 50 MUST Have a Professional Headshot

When you’re over age 50 and seeking a job, you’ll often encounter subtle—and not-so-subtle—age discrimination from potential employers. In fact, 65% of older workers say age is an obstacle to getting a job.

But why? Well, many employers fear that older workers will want a higher salary than younger employees or that they won’t stay in jobs where they make less than they’re used to. In addition, some employers think that older workers will be slow to adapt to new technologies and costly to train, even though studies have found that there’s no correlation between age and work performance.

If you’re on the job hunt, the best way to overcome these biases is to be prepared for them and do your best to combat judgments recruiters and potential employers may make about you based solely on your age.

You will be judged by how you look.

Your appearance matters.The way you look and present yourself can help you get your dream job. Or it can cause you to miss out on job opportunities.

But that’s not fair, you might be thinking, I should be judged on my skills and experience! You definitely should, but the fact is we all make snap judgments based on appearance every day, especially employers. A CareerBuilder survey found that appearances not only affect your ability to get hired but can also affect your chances of getting a promotion.

That’s why it’s so important to have a quality, professional headshot on hand during your job search. After all, 41% of recruiters say that seeing a photo of a candidate impacts their first impression, and you want to make sure you come across as the perfect candidate for the job!

You need to have an online presence.

One of the reasons employers are reluctant to hire older workers is that they fear they’re not comfortable with digital technology. A strong online presence can debunk this belief and prove that you’re capable of adapting and learning new skills.

In the last decade, most of the hiring process has moved online, which means you’ll need to be more active on social media, especially LinkedIn. A LinkedIn profile without a photo is an immediate turnoff for recruiters and potential employers, as it suggests you have something to hide, so make sure you complete your profile with both a profile image and a cover photo.

You’ll also want to use your headshot anywhere you have a digital presence, from blog posts or articles you’ve guest-written on other people’s websites to your own professional website or portfolio. Even your email account will need an image, and a quality headshot is the perfect way to convey that you’re trustworthy and professional.

And you need to make a good first impression online.

You may have the best smile and firmest handshake, but these days a potential employer is most likely to first see you online. In fact, 96% of recruiters use social media to find candidates, and they often scan profiles quickly, usually less than 10 seconds. Of that brief time, 20% is used to evaluate photos.

Most employers expect younger workers to have an edge online, so having an impressive LinkedIn profile can put you ahead and cause recruiters to sit up and take notice. Make sure your profile photo is high-quality, instead of a casual photo taken by a family member or friend.

The right headshot should convey friendliness, approachability, professionalism, and confidence. That may seem like a lot to capture in just one image, but that’s where a professional photographer can help! They know how to pose you, how to create the best lighting, and how to edit your photos to create the perfect images for your job search.

You have to show that you know your stuff.

As an older job seeker, you have something younger workers just don’t have—a wealth of experience and knowledge. While you may not have as much digital experience, it’s important to include on your resume skills that are useful in any work environment, like communication and managerial experience.

Highlight your years of work experience on your LinkedIn profile so potential employees can clearly see that you know what you’re doing and would be a valuable addition to their team. And be creative! Think about the many things you’ve learned in your career and how those skills can translate to the positions for which you’re applying.

To complete your LinkedIn profile, choose a quality headshot that shows you looking professional, approachable, and trustworthy. Remember that, no matter how unfair it is, you will be judged on your appearance, and an impressive headshot can be that strong first impression you need to capture an employer’s interest.

So…what makes a good headshot?

A professional photographer can help you with posing, lighting, and even wardrobe, but here are a few tips to help you get the perfect photos for your career:

  • Make eye contact—Look toward the camera but focus beyond it to help create an impression of directness and approachability.
  • Smile—Research has shown that a smile helps create a more likeable impression.
  • Dress like you would for a job interview—That means no wrinkled or casual clothes. Look crisp and sharp. And check out our wardrobe guide for more information on what to wear.
  • Keep your headshot current—Don’t rely on the same photo for a decade. Instead, update your photo every couple years.

Professional headshots can put you ahead and help you advance your career, making sure you get exactly where you want to go.

6 Tips for Building Your Online Presence

6 Tips for Building Your Online Presence

When you’re looking for a job, it’s essential to have a positive online presence. After all, most potential employers will look up your social media profiles and search for you online, and you want your digital footprint to reflect positively on you and your career. Check out these 6 tips for building a solid online presence that will help you get the job you want.  

Create an online portfolio.

Building your own website is a great way to show off your previous work and expertise in a polished way. If you’ve never created an online portfolio before, don’t stress! It doesn’t have to be complicated. Use your resume as a starting point and add extra details, like graphs, charts, white papers, or articles you’ve created. Keep it simple and easy to navigate and be sure to regularly update it so the information stays fresh.

Include keywords on your career website and in your resume.

Many companies use automated tracking systems to accept resumes which allow them to search for certain keywords and eliminate applications that don’t meet their requirements. So, if you want to get your resume to the right people and get through the digital sifting, you have to include the right keywords in your content. Think about words and phrases recruiters might use when looking to fill the type of position you’re seeking and including them in the body of your resume. Don’t just create a list of words in your resume, but make sure they fit smoothly and cohesively into your content. And be sure to include these words and phrases in your online portfolio as well, the better to show up in searches for potential positions!

Monitor your social media presence.

Some people think they can keep their personal social media separate from their career, but that isn’t the best idea. Social media can be a great way to build personal connections that can lead to professional opportunities, and your personal profiles should present the same face to potential employers as your LinkedIn.

Put time and effort into your LinkedIn profile.

Don’t just throw together a LinkedIn profile in a few minutes. Take time to build out your account with a professional photo and detailed job history. You’d be surprised how many recruiters check LinkedIn first when scoping out possible new hires, so you want to make sure your profile is just as detailed as the resume you submit to hiring managers and recruiters.

Look for opportunities to create online content.

Show off your expertise in a blog post, whether by creating your own blog or guest-writing on someone else’s. Blogging is an excellent way to expand and improve your online presence, and you don’t even have to be an amazing writer to create a solid blog post. Just make sure whatever you post is error-free and don’t write anything you wouldn’t want a potential employer to read.

Be active online.

You won’t have much of an online presence if you don’t interact with other people online. Participate in forums and comment on content that interests you on LinkedIn. Make sure your comments are thoughtful and don’t get involved in debates, but definitely take time to be more involved on the websites you’re a part of. You never know what opportunities you’ll find as a result!

By building your online presence, you can open yourself up to more career opportunities and growth, as well as build a network of personal and professional connections to help you find the job of your dreams!

What is Personal Brand Photography and Why is it So Important?

What is Personal Brand Photography and Why is it So Important?

What is personal brand photography?

When most people think about branding, they concentrate on their logo, the type of font used on their website and the color palette. Your visual identity is made up of these elements sure, but a big part of that identity is you and what you what your audience to come away with after viewing your site.

Brand photography is a customized portrait session that reflects your visual identity. We create professional images that fit with your brand by showcasing the stories you want to tell. This can include your workspace, your craft, props, your products and your team members (including your pets that might share an office with you and reflect who you are as a person).

What brand photography is not, is just another headshot. While a headshot is a part of a brand portrait session, what we focus on is a range of consistent, well-crafted images that tell the story of your business, your brand, and your unique value proposition.

Why is this important?

I think Seth Godin said it best – “People do not buy goods & services. They buy relations, stories, and magic.”

Strong images help shape the story you want to showcase to your ideal client. They need to connect with you, not just with what you do or sell. Telling your story makes that happen. Remember that first impressions influence purchasing decisions. And buying is driven by emotion more than logic or even facts.

You must keep your visitors engaged with updated visual content. Don’t risk losing their limited interest with the same tired photos. Studies show posting daily or even multiple times per day on Instagram and Pinterest drive conversions because people want to see fresh content.

Posts on social media with images receive 120% to 180% more visibility and engagement. 82% of consumers trust a company more — and 77 % are more likely to buy from a company — if the founder uses social media.

When you invest in brand photography you come away with a library of image files to select from which will:

  • Save you time
  • Provide a beneficial impact to your bottom line
  • Differentiate yourself from your competition
  • Make your ideal client feel connected to you and what you offer
  • Help you rock your business like the star you are!

In today’s crowded online marketplace saturated with similar messages, you cannot afford to under-utilize any of your assets. And that includes professional photography.

Rock Your Linkedin Profile

Rock Your Linkedin Profile

linkedin profile

Give your profile picture a boost

If you have spent anytime at all on Linkedin, then I’m sure you’ve noticed the profiles that stand out. They are for the people who spent time filling in all the details of their profile, getting colleagues to write endorsements and making sure their resumes give the results of their efforts and don’t just read like a job description.

And while all of that is incredibly important, before you even start looking at those details, what is the first thing you notice? The profile picture. Are you looking at a selfie, vacation pictures, random iPhone pic with so-so lighting or has this person taken the time to hire a professional?

The difference between people who have invested in their image and the people who don’t is immediately apparent.

profile picture
headshot photo

Nicci is an excellent example of this. She came to my studio in October because she understands that to get noticed on Linkedin she needed to update her profile picture. I followed up with her two months after her session, and she reported that her Linkedin results soared immediately after updating her image and within two months she found her dream position.

So be like Nicci and let’s rock you Linkedin profile today and start 2019 with a win!

How to Feel Comfortable in Front of the Camera

professional headshots

Phоtоgrарhу hаѕ the роwеr to mоvе and inѕрirе uѕ. It сrеаtеѕ an immеdiаtе connection bеtwееn subject аnd viеwеr аnd саn reveal a wоrld within a single image. A great headshot iѕ a ѕtер in the right dirесtiоn—it iѕ оftеn the firѕt imрrеѕѕiоn оthеrѕ will hаvе of уоu, аnd it nееdѕ to ѕhоw confidence and acumen. Aѕ a business man/woman, blogger еtс. A gооd-lооking headshot will bе imperative in ѕhоwing the оutѕidе wоrld hоw wеll you carry уоurѕеlf professionally.

Invеѕting in a high-quality, professionally tаkеn headshot iѕ аn invеѕtmеnt in уоur personal brand. It shows уоu аt your bеѕt, thе wау уоu want рrоѕресtivе сliеntѕ tо see you. Mаnу оf uѕ аrе nоt nаturаllу photogenic. Aѕ a rеѕult, аmаtеur рhоtоgrарhу can асtuаllу еnd up mаking you lооk nothing likе you dо in person аnd dеfinitеlу nоt уоur bеѕt. A рrоfеѕѕiоnаl рhоtоgrарhеr that ѕресiаlizеѕ in hеаdѕhоtѕ knоwѕ how tо роѕitiоn уоu, hоw tо choose thе bеѕt bасkdrор аnd hоw tо uѕе lighting to gеt the bеѕt ѕhоt possible.

It’ѕ standard рrасtiсе nowadays tо seek рrоfеѕѕiоnаl hеаdѕhоtѕ fоr buѕinеѕѕ саrdѕ, websites аnd social mеdiа accounts. Prоfilе рhоtоѕ аrе ѕо еѕѕеntiаl tо mоdеrn соmmuniсаtiоn thаt a good оnе’ѕ bесоmе a basic necessity. And that couldn’t bе truеr thаn fоr thоѕе of uѕ whose рrоfеѕѕiоnаl lives are tied tо ѕосiаl mеdiа profiles.

Why Before How

You might ask yourself, “Why do I need a headshot?” This question is vital before setting out for photographs. The WHY is important and has to come first because giving you the HOW before the WHY is simply putting the cart before the horse. You really need to understand this part to make the most out of the steps I’m going to give you. So let’s talk about why you need a good headshot before we talk about how to look good and feel comfortable in front of the camera. 

A good headshot gives people an idea of your personality before they meet you. It conveys your professionalism. If you look professional, potential clients, investors, collaborators, etc. who don’t know you personally are going to be more likely to agree to that first meeting.

It makes you feel good to look your best. Having a quality image of yourself to share with your professional peers boosts your self-confidence, and it can even inspire you to share more of yourself with others, take a few risks, and overcome work-related challenges.

It reminds business contacts who you are if they met you in passing at a conference or business function. This little cue make sit more likely they will accept your friend or follow request on social media. 

And finally, a current headshot gives people an idea of what you look like now. It supports and enhances the skills and experience on your LinkedIn profile and other social media profiles, making you stand out from the rest.

Now that you know the WHY, it’s time to get to the HOW. 

Learn to relax and smile for the camera.

Smiling is a tricky thing when it comes to photos. Smiling too big and you look silly, but no smile at all can make you look broody or angry. The solution? The natural smile you so often do when the camera’s not on you.

Smiling too wide on purpose will cause your face to tense up, your eyes to squint, and your cheeks to puff out, which aren’t the benchmarks of an attractive photos. Instead, take a beat to relax your face and open your mouth slightly, so that your lower lip matches the curve of your upper teeth. This is universally flattering and allows you to decide how much teeth you want to show.

Not a fan of smiling with teeth? Learn to smile with your eyes. When you smile naturally, the area aronund your eyes tends to crease a bit, which reads as much more sincere than stiffly smiling just with your mouth. 

Talk to the photographer and get to know them.

Get to know your photographer before they start shooting, even just by a little small talk while they’re setting up. You can ask them how they got into photography, what their favorite shoots have been, etc. They’ll become far less intimidating. Getting to know a bit about the person you’re working with tends to remove the intimidation factor. Once you see that the photographer is a regular person like yourself, it’s less overwhelming once they pick up the camera and point it at you.

Don’t be rushed. Ensure you take the time to emotionally connect with your photographer. 

Focus on what makes you unique.

One of the characteristics of a good photograph is your confidence in your appearance. Many times we get concerned about something wrong with our face: your freckles, the gap in your teeth, how squinty your eyes get when you smile. Instead of trying to hide those things, embrace them! You will look much better in your photos that way. 

Learn your best side.

Knowing your best side will help you to feel comfortable in front of the camera. Your best side is either your left or right side of your face. We all have a favorite side. Take a look in the mirror and see which side you favor the most. This will be your go-to side view when you’re taking photos or snapping selfies for social media. 

Twist your body and position your arms.

Position your body at a 45-degree angle and put the arm closest to the camera on your hip. Then plant one foot slightly in front of the other, point your toe to the camera, and place your weight on your back leg. 

Ever wonder why every celebrity poses with her camera-facing arm on her hip? It’s because that particular movement ensure that her upper arm isn’t smooshed against her body, making it look flattened. If you find the hand-on-hip pose to be a bit forced, try holding your arms out from your sides ever so slightly.

Ignore the rest of the world.

It’s so easy to let that little voice in your head take over when you’re having a photo taken. Whether you’re in a town full of people or in the middle of nowhere one on one with your photographer, doubt will start to creep in. You may feel concerned what other people think of you or think you’re being judged, but I promise that most of the time people don’t even notice or don’t care. In terms of the photographer you’re with, they really don’t mind if you feel shy. So try to forget about the rest of the world around you and enjoy the process.

Have fun.

It’s so important to try and have fun while you’re having your photo taken. Try your best to keep your mood light. The more you relax into a photoshoot and let yourself go, the more fun you’ll have, the more confident you’ll feel, and the nicer your photos will be. 


Ready to update your image?