A Story About Head Shots by Arizona Photographer Elaine Kessler

V and I have known each other for awhile and I’ve always found her to be an ambitious, vivacious, and beautiful person.  I photographed the incredible dance troupe she choreographs and directs and was elated when she contacted me to do head shots.  She was nominated for a highly coveted award and needed a headshot that captured who she knew herself to be for the awards ceremony program.  We worked in an environment that offered both architectural elements and some natural elements.

Here’s what worked with her head shot session:

LOCATION:  We shot in downtown Chandler where there were beautiful columns, stately colonial looking doors, interesting alley like ways, and shade that was even and not too dark.


TIMING:  We shot close to sunset so the sun was relatively low in the sky giving us a soft, golden light that is perfect for portraits.  While I generally only shoot outdoors at first and last lights, I will be flexible if shooting outdoors in a location that affords open and even shade.  I will shoot indoors, or create studio lit head shots, at any time of day as these are artificially lit and totally manageable.


STYLE:  V followed my styling tips and brought along a few different scarves and pieces of jewelry to demonstrate her personality and to offer a bit of texture to the headshots.  I LOVE the green scarf with her gorgeous eyes!  She styled her hair in a way that was comfortable for her and reflects who she knows herself to be.  While I do recommend being professionally styled for head shots, it is really important that the headshot accurately depicts who you are.  If you have curly hair and normally wear it naturally curly, to straighten it for head shots designed to promote recognition is counterproductive.




3651 E Baseline Rd
Suite e223
Gilbert, AZ 85234
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