Headshot Prep: Necklines. Advice for actor and corporate headshots.
Headshot Clothing Choices:
What to wear seems to be a common dilemma, and getting a headshot or portrait taken can really put the pressure on. I discuss a little more about what to wear to a headshot session in another blog post, but here we will be looking specifically at necklines, and how different necklines work for different shots.
Knowing your crop length:
Consider this first. Where do you want to sit within the frame of your final shots? Do you want a mid-length shot from the waist up? Or a tightly cropped shot from your collarbones to the top of your head? Knowing how much of your outfit will be shown in the shot will obviously influence your final outfit choice.
A beautiful open neckline can be really stunning in a headshot. Again, understanding how tight of a crop you want your final photos to be is really important here. Take care with low cut necklines, as a tighter head and shoulders crop can leave you with an unintentional ‘implied nude’ situation that wont necessarily work for the headshot you need.
In the example here Lucie has a beautiful neckline that really compliments the image. It opens the portrait up, and creates leading lines that draw the eye to her face and eyes. The neckline itself isn’t too distracting, and the top is well fitted and complimenting.
Necklines that are clear cut and smooth tend to work well. Think ironed collared shirts, v-necks and rounded necklines for menswear, and nicely fitted, straight sitting necklines for women. Too many ruffles and un-ironed, wrinkled clothing is one way to distract from the face.
Below are some more examples of more open necklines:
Higher necklines can make a bold statement. In the case of this moodier image the high, dark neckline helps to create the mood of the shot. It blends into the darker background, allowing us to focus on the face and expression in the headshot.
In general, high necklines can do this without necessarily creating a moody image. They can be used for many reasons:
– To show your personal style.
– Portray a professional image.
– Create a particular character, (when it comes to actors headshots).
– Simply the image and reduce distractions.
Tips for pulling off a high neckline:
– Be comfortable in what you wear. If it is your first time wearing a turtleneck and you feel like its not your style, this might show in the final shots. Wear something you’re confident in.
– Fitted clothing works better – it smooths out the neckline to create a clean and sophisticated look.
– Ironed and unwrinkled clothing is important too!
– Think of the colours you wear: especially if you’re blocking colour with a high neckline.
Below are some more examples of higher necklines:
A Good Headshot:
There is a lot to consider before getting your headshot taken. Clothing is just one consideration that can make a real difference in how your final images come out. Consider what you want to portray: your personal branding or sense of character. Think about where your image will be used, and how it will be used. The reasons behind your headshot are the keys to base your planning off.
If you need more headshot advice, read more of my advice, such as tips for better headshots, what to wear to a headshot session, and the benefits of professional headshot for your business.