The Ultimate Guide to the Perfect Headshot

Perfect Headshot

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a perfect headshot is worth an entire library!

A perfect headshot speaks volumes about your personality, reveals what you look like at your very best, and is a reflection of your work ethic and commitment to success.

It’s also one of the main criteria that Hiring Managers use to determine whether or not you’re a good fit for a particular Brand Ambassador gig.

It’s your calling card and if it looks bad, you look bad.

So the big question is…

How do you get a killer headshot?

If you ‘re looking for an ultimate A-Z guide for taking the perfect headshot that will land you more gigs and higher pay rates, this little post I whipped up should do the trick!

Here are 8 nuggets of amazing headshot wisdom that I’ve collected from several expert photographers as well as from my own personal experience with The Headshot Truck.

1. FIND THE PERFECT HEADSHOT PHOTOGRAPHER

Let’s start off by finding the perfect headshot photographer. No two photographers are going to be the same. They’re each going to have their own unique personalities, set of skills, backdrops, prices, preferred angles, etc. and it’s up to you to find the best fit!

I would definitely recommend going the extra mile here and doing some thorough research because these headshots are an important tool for your career and you don’t want to pay for and get stuck with duds that you don’t love.

I recommend checking Yelp first as Yelp is a great resource for finding skilled photographers in your area. On photographers’ Yelp pages, you’ll find examples of their work, links to their websites, and reviews from previous customers to use for your research.

After you’ve narrowed it down to a few of your favorite choices, it’s important to hop on a phone call and ask your prospects the right questions so that you feel comfortable and know exactly what you’d be getting as a client.

Here’s a free cheat sheet of 11 questions you MUST ask prospective headshot photographers so that you’re able to get the perfect headshots!

 

2. EYES ARE THE WINDOWS TO THE SOUL

Your eyes should look alive and energized, not bland and glazed over.

Another thing to note is that a lot of people, when they’re posing, will keep their eyes wide open. This gives off a sense of uncertainty and fear, similar to that of a “deer in headlights.”

I’m guilty of doing this myself, but what my photographer from The Headshot Truck told me was a total game changer.

He told me to squint a little bit.

That’s it.

A slight squint worked wonders for my headshots and it will work wonders for yours too!

Squinting a little while smiling lights up your entire face, which conveys a more friendly and trustworthy personality. Squinting a little with a neutral face, gives you a wiser and more confident look.

Try it out in the mirror or in a selfie and see how much of a difference the all mighty squint makes!

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3. BE PREPARED FOR THE PERFECT HEADSHOT

Don’t show up to your photo shoot hung over, tired, and/or rushed because it will show in your headshots. That’s not the impression you want to give to Hiring Managers and that’s definitely not the impression that brands wants to give to their fans.

Try to avoid consuming any type of alcohol at least 24 hours prior to your photo shoot and instead drink lots of water. This will help keep your skin looking supple and vibrant!

Also, be sure to get plenty of sleep the night before so that you can show up to your shoot looking rested with minimal eye-baggage.

And if you’re thinking about trying new skin or hair products before a photo shoot, don’t do it. I know it can be tempting but if you try something new, you may experience unexpected and often times negative results.

We wouldn’t want your headshots to highlight your peeling skin and shedding hair…

As far as your wardrobe goes, plan out several outfits you want to wear the day before the shoot and make sure that they’re ironed and have no wrinkles or stains.

Perfect Headshot

4. WHAT TO WEAR FOR THE PERFECT HEADSHOT

How do you feel when you wear your favorite outfit?

Pretty freakin’ awesome right??

You feel confident and attractive and you want as many people as humanly possible to see you!

That’s exactly how you should feel for your photo shoot. It will show on your face and in your body language and your pictures will turn out amazingly!

Don’t over do it though by wearing an outfit that’s too flashy – the headshot is about your face, not your clothes.

Avoid stripes, lavish necklaces, colorful ties, big earrings, props, etc. and reach for your favorite basics and solid dark colored clothing.

It’s also important to note that most headshot photographers offer something called “looks.”

Looks are simply wardrobe changes between shots so you can have a variety of pictures to submit to agencies. Extra looks do cost extra money since you’ll be taking up more time, but having a variety of looks is definitely worth the investment.

Bring several wardrobe options to your photo shoot, even if you decide to do just one look. Your photographer will make the best recommendation for you based on your vibe, the environment (indoor or outdoor), and your goals.

Guys should bring a couple of button up shirts, a few solid t-shirts, and maybe a suit or jacket if you want a more professional look.

Gals should bring several options with sleeves and several without.

 

*Expert Tip*

If you have lighter skin, wear something darker and more colorful. If you have darker skin, wear something lighter. You want to make your face pop out rather than make it blend in with your outfit.

Perfect Headshot
 

5. MAKEUP AND HAIR

Everyone should use makeup…guys included!

I’m not calling you ugly, I’m sure you’re beautiful! But just a little bit of makeup can go a long way when a powerful camera is so close to your face.

It should look natural and clean. If you don’t feel comfortable doing it yourself, most headshot photographers have a makeup artist on their team who can pretty you up.

Whether you choose to do it on your own or have someone else do it, a good makeup job will highlight the best parts of you, while hiding any shine, redness, blemishes, and eye circles you may have.

Similar to makeup, you’re going to want the hairdo in your headshot to look like the hairdo you would rock at gigs.

 

*Expert Tip*

Don’t wear more make up or pretty your hair up too much more than you would when going to a job interview or a gig. Hiring Managers are expecting you to look like your headshots and will feel sad if you don’t.

Don’t make Hiring Managers feel sad 🙁

 

6. POSES FOR THE PERFECT HEADSHOT

The “¾ pose” is the money pose for most people. This is accomplished by positioning your body so that it’s facing 10 o’clock or 2’ o clock but your face is still looking directly at the camera.

This angle slims your body and really helps eliminate any double chin action.

Practice makes perfect so try out some poses in front of a mirror and see what works best. It might feel weird at first but it’s important that you feel comfortable posing for the camera. I didn’t practice at all and I regret it because I felt pretty awkward at times during my shoot.

 

*Expert Tip*

Look through magazines or online for headshot and modeling examples that you like. Learn from the best and copy their moves!

Perfect Headshot
 

7. RETOUCHING

Retouching is the postproduction editing process of your headshot.

It’s used to lighten or remove any blemishes, soften any under-eye circles, and whiten your eyes and teeth while at the same time leaving the photograph looking as natural and untouched as possible.

The purpose of retouching is to bring out the best version of you without making you look too different.

Most professional photographers offer affordable retouching services and I highly recommend you have it done for the headshots you like best.

It’s super rare that a headshot is so flawless that it needs no retouching. Even if you think you look perfect, there are certain things that a skilled editor can do that will give your headshot that little extra magic that just might get you booked for the gig of your dreams.

 

8. HAVE FUN AND RELAX

If you found a good photographer and have prepared as best as you could, you have absolutely nothing to worry about.

Just have fun and let your photographer capture your beautiful spark!

Remember, it’s in the photographer’s best interest to make these photos look incredible. A lot of their business comes from referrals so they might even care more about the success of the shoot than you do!

Your photographer is going to take lots of pictures so don’t fret if you don’t look perfect in some of the frames.

Just be sure to communicate clearly to your photographer what you want. Photographers are great at what they do but they’re not mind readers.

Keep in mind too that your photographer has taken thousands of headshots before and probably knows a thing or two about making you look great.

Trust and listen to them.

Your headshots will turn out beautifully if you do.

Perfect Headshot

TO CONCLUDE…

Having the perfect headshot gets you paid that sweet, sweet cash and if that ain’t enough of a reason to go out and get some taken, I don’t know what is!

The small investment is worth every penny and you’ll get it all back and so much more if you use this guide.

Good luck and go make Derek Zoolander proud!

Kenny teaches friendly and outgoing people how they can get paid to represent their favorite brands at amazing events across the nation. Read Kenny’s story of how he went from being broke and in debt to making $8,000/month as a Brand Ambassador. Feel free to send Kenny a message here!

How to Become TIPS Certified

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So you want your TIPS certification?

Well, you’ve come to the right place! In just 10 easy steps, you can become TIPS Certified and get access to awesome alcohol serving gigs like Wine Tastings, Clubbing Events, Bars, and Retail Sampling just to name a few. These events pay extremely well and your certificate will pay for itself after about 1 hour of alcohol serving work!

After obtaining my TIPS Certification, many opportunities began to pour in for me (pun intended). Even if a job I was applying for didn’t require a TIPS Certification, I made sure to include it on my resume, my personal website, my email applications, and in my interviews. It helped me to stand out from the crowd of applicants and it also showed employers that I was a trained professional in serving not just alcohol, but serving people in general.

GetTIPS.com is the leader in TIPS alcohol training and they are the only company that I trust and support. Whether you’re a Brand Ambassador or a Bar Tender, GetTips’ online course is very easy and thorough so you will become well prepared to serve alcohol legally, safely, and responsibly. Getting certified only costs $40 and will take about 1 hour to complete – a very small price for a certificate that will serve you well for many years.

Read on below to learn exactly how to become TIPS Certified in just 10 easy steps:

 

1. Click on this link to get to the GetTips.com website and then select “Register” to get started

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2. Fill in the necessary personal information

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3. Use the Referral Code: 305041 when prompted (see below):

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4. Securely pay for the course using your preferred credit card

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5. After placing your order, you’re ready to get started! Click “Take Class” to begin the course!

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6. And we’re off! You’ll be presented with information about alcohol and how to serve it responsibly. In all honesty, it’s pretty interesting and there are even short and fun informational videos that are used. This part of the course will take about 1 hour.

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7. At the end of each section, you’ll be quizzed. You need to get at least 80% of the answers correct in order to move on the next section. Don’t worry, you can retake it as many times as necessary. Everyone passes!

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8. Congratulations! You’re not armed with the necessary legal, alcohol, and intervention information you need to responsilby serve alcohol and protect yourself and those around you.
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9. Quiz time. There are 46 questions you need to answer in order to become certified. Don’t worry about being perfect, your score is not reflected on the certificate. Good luck!

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10. YOU DID IT! You are now officially TIPS Alcohol Certified and can legally and responsibly serve alcohol!How to Become TIPS Alcohol Certified 12

That’s that!

By following the 10 steps in this tutorial, you’ll become TIPS Certified in no time. Not only is a TIPS Alcohol Certificate required for many serving jobs, but just having one will really help you stand out from a crowd of applicants.

It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s affordable, and being certified will open up many doors for your professional alcohol promo and serving career.

If you have any questions on how to become TIPS Certified, feel free to leave a question in the comments below and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Have fun getting paid to party!

Kenny teaches friendly and outgoing people how they can get paid to represent their favorite brands at amazing events across the nation. Read Kenny’s story of how he went from being broke and in debt to making $8,000/month as a Brand Ambassador. Feel free to send Kenny a message here!

How to Make Your Own Website or Blog in Less Than 10 Minutes

Make Your Own Website Blog

You are so much more than just a resume and a headshot!

(Especially if you’re an actor/singer/photographer/etc.)

You have probably worked dozens of different gigs and have tons of awesome photos, stories, videos, and maybe even testimonials to share. Don’t let all of that go to waste…

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a website is worth a billion.

By creating a personal website, not only will you have the platform to share your entire promotional or professional experience with agencies and brands, but you will also set yourself apart as a true professional in the promotional marketing industry.

The result?

You are going to impress A LOT more agencies and land A LOT more gigs.

I whipped up my promo website in no time and as soon as I started including it in my resume, emails, business cards, and interviews, my success rate of getting hired for gigs is so high now that a lot of times I have to turn down offers!

You can check my website out at http://www.kennyazamapromo.com.

It’s not much and there’s so much more that I could do with it but this alone puts me way ahead of the rest of the applicants. It paints a much more vivid picture of who I am, who I’ve worked for, and what I do best. I plan on eventually adding a video and testimonials from agencies as well!

Wouldn’t you want to hire a freelancer who has their own professional website?

Wouldn’t you want to hire promotional staff who are good at promoting themselves?

It’s a game changer, seriously. 

Even if you don’t use it for your promos, you should definitely, absolutely, positively, 100% be the owner of your own name domain name. Not having one is like not picking up your newborn baby from the hospital and letting someone else take them (okay, not having your own domain name is worse but you get the point). This is an extremely valuable asset that you don’t want to miss out on. Another plus is you get your own email domain eg. “name@fullname.com.”

Click here to snag your domain name (www.FullName.com) before someone else does!

You DO NOT need to know how to code to build your own website.

Building a website is WAY easier and cheaper than most people think and today I’m going to show you how to do it from scratch to finish in under 10 minutes for only $3.95 per month (an average of only 10 minutes of promo work).

LET’S GO!

 

GET YOUR DOMAIN NAME AND HOSTING PLAN IN 5 EASY STEPS

In order to make a website you need to have 2 things – a domain name and a hosting provider.

A domain name is the part that comes before “.com”. You’ll want to claim your full name if you can for your domain name.

A hosting provider is a service that provides space on the internet for your website. Think of it like the land you build a house on except the house is your website.

I use Bluehost for my domain name and web hosting because not only is it cheap, but it’s also incredibly fast, powerful, and reliable. Bluehost is also the only recommended hosting provider by WordPress (the #1 website building software in the world) since 2005, which is a testament in itself. Bluehost offers excellent customer service via phone or chat and they are extremely user friendly for anyone new to websites.

A hosting plan is only $3.95/month if you use THIS link (plus for a limited time only, you will receive a FREE domain name!)

 

Here’s how you lock down your domain name and hosting in 5 easy steps (approx. 4 minutes):

1. Click here to go to Bluehost’s website and press the green “Get Started Now” button

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2. Select the “Starter Plan” (you can always upgrade later if you’d like)

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3. Enter the domain name that you want (www.FullName.com). If your name is already taken, try adding in your middle initial or add “Promo” or “BA” at the end if you want it to be exclusively for your promo work. You ALWAYS want the .com version of your domain. 

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4. Fill in your information

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*You don’t need to get any of the upgrades so save your money and uncheck everything here

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5. Enter your billing information and then press “Submit”

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CONGRATULATIONS!!!

You are now the proud owner of your very own domain name and website/blog! It’s yours for as long as you like and you can use it for whatever you like. Promo website, personal blog, online portfolio of your acting gigs, etc. It’s almost like buying your very own house. A cyber one, but still. Now let’s decorate it…

 

WEBSITE DESIGN

Another reason why Bluehost is great is because they offer Weebly absolutely free. Weebly is a powerful and easy to use “drag and drop” website building tool which you can use to create your website or blog in mere minutes. You simply choose which elements or pages you want on your website and drop them where you want them! It’s perfect for beginners and you don’t even need to know how to code!

I’ll show you how to install Weebly onto your website in 3 easy steps (approx. 5 minutes):

 

1. Access your Bluehost account by logging in with the username and password you created when you purchased your domain and hosting plan

2. Scroll down and click on the “Use Weebly” icon

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3. Under the free “Basic” plan, select the domain name you just purchased to get started.
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*Once you’re logged in, you will have access to a dashboard (below) and you will be able to design your website using Weebly’s “drag and drop” tools. It’s super easy to use and you’ll have a beautiful website in no time!

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WEBSITE DESIGN TIPS

-Once in Weebly, you can click the “Design” tab at the top to choose a theme for your website and what’s convenient is that you can change the theme whenever you like and all of your content will stay put. From the design tab you can also customize your fonts, your titles, your colors, and much more.

-To add pages to your website, simply click the “Pages” tab at the top and enter the ones you want. The pages I recommend every Brand Ambassador include on their website are:

  • About Me (Set as homepage)
  • Skills & Services
  • Brands Represented/Portfolio
  • Hire Me
  • Blog (Optional)
  • Testimonials (If you have them)

Within any of these pages, you can showcase all of your photos, videos, stories, and testimonials to bring your experience and your personal brand to life!

 

Just to recap everything we just discussed:

-Buy your domain and hosting plan through Bluehost (Use this link and it’s only $3.95 AND for a limited time only you’ll get a FREE domain name)

-Install Weebly, the “drag and drop” website builder, to design your website or blog in mere minutes

-Include pages for “About”, “Skills & Services”, “Brands Represented”, and “Hire Me” (bare minimum) and even add a Blog to it if you’d like to showcase your experiences through writing.

 

And there you have it! That’s the basics of building your very own website/blog in less than 10 minutes! Easy peasy right? You already have the content and now you all you have to do is plug it in.

Whether this website is for your promo work, your acting gigs, your blog, your photography, or it’s for your professional online portfolio, you’ve made an extremely profitable decision to have your own website. In this day and age, if you don’t exist online, you don’t exist at all.

If you take the time to craft a thoughtful personal website or blog, be ready for many, many, many more opportunities to come your way.

 

PROFESSIONAL WEBSITE DESIGN SERVICES

Most of the time Weebly through Bluehost will be perfectly fine to build your promo website. But maybe you want something more beautiful and flexible than what Weebly can provide. If you’re looking to build a professional blog or portfolio for your acting, singing, photography, or personal use, I’d love to help!

With over 2 years of website developing experience, I’ve created many websites for a variety of industries, including the one you’re browsing right now.

In this day and age, your personal brand is one of your most valuable assets and it all starts with having your own professional website.

Get in touch with me here and let’s bring your vision to life!

Kenny teaches friendly and outgoing people how they can get paid to represent their favorite brands at amazing events across the nation. Read Kenny’s story of how he went from being broke and in debt to making $8,000/month as a Brand Ambassador. Feel free to send Kenny a message here!