The process of getting the perfect headshot photo - Dan Cantero Headshots
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The process of getting the perfect headshot photo

Welcome to my latest article where I share with you the process of getting the perfect headshot photo. These are the things I’m going to cover.

  • Preparing for your headshot photograpy session
  • What does your headshot photo say about you?
  • Clothes
  • Hair and Makeup
  • Posing
  • Expression
  • Lighting
  • Retouching

The process of getting the perfect corporate headshot photo is a very specific number of things that need to happen in order to get the best possible photo.

So you have decided to take the plunge and invest some time, money and energy into getting a really good headshot photograph to represent you on all your social media platforms. Making this decision already sets you apart from your competition. The internet is a sea of information which makes it really hard to stand out from all that noise. A good headshot makes people stop and take notice.

Getting a good headshot is more than simply standing in front of the camera and smiling. A good headshot photograph is a really good way to make a first impression.

Most times, your headshot photo is going to be the first thing that people notice about you. Regardless wether you think it’s fair to judge a book by it’s cover, it’s still going to happen so make your first impression count!

My name is Dan Cantero and I am a Sydney Headshot Photographer. I have helped hundreds of people get a great professional business photo that has resulted in more clients and a better job or just better engagement online.

It has taken me years to develop the process of getting the perfect headshot photo. Everything we need, from start to finish is explained ahead of time so there are no surprises.

If you’ve read this far, I take it that you are interested in knowing what goes into a Dan Cantero Headshot photograph so I am going to share this process with you. Here is everything I’m going to write about in this article.

Preparing for your headshot photography session

Preparation is the single most important factor that sets apart a good headshot from a great headshot. This where we talk about the kind of photograph that you need and how we are going to achieve this.

What does your headshot photo say about you?

We need to have a message that pops into people’s mind when they see your photo. The message is your personal brand and it is how you want people to feel when they see your photo for the fist time. Do you want to look friendly, authoritative, approachable, professional, etc. It may even be a combination of those things. Whatever the message, we need to determine this ahead of the shoot.


Your wardrobe choices make a huge impact on the way you come across in a photo. When you book a headshot session with me, I provide you with a preparation guide to help you pick out items of clothing, colours, patterns, etc. Just because something looks good on your in real life, doesn’t mean that it is going to translate well in a photograph.

Hair and Makeup

Makeup for photography is very different to the type of makeup you wear when you are out. Most people are not aware of this and apply makeup that is not ideal to be photographed in. My preparation guide will also help you in what type of makeup you need or if you prefer, we can organise a makeup artist to take care of you on the day of your shoot. The same thing applies for hair.



This is something that makes people very uncomfortable and it’s really not surprising. Unless you are a professional model or actor, why would you know how to pose? Unfortunately, a lot of photographers out there don’t take this into consideration. You can’t simply ask somebody to smile and take a photo. The good news is that I’ve got a system to help you learn posing in no more than a couple of minutes. This is something that you will take away with you and use it for the rest of your life. Now, I’m not going to turn you into a posing master supermodel but, you will learn 80% of the professional models do to ensure that they look great in front of the camera.



Expression is super critical to getting a sincere and professional headshot photo. The easiest way to get an amazing photo is for you to be relaxed. One of the best ways for you to relax, is to not have any other people in the room other than you and I. This way I will be able to coach you without any distractions. My camera will be connected to a large monitor where you can see the results of my coaching. We will take regular intervals to review the images that we have captured, and this one will be able to tell what works and what doesn’t work. And don’t worry, all those bad photos will be deleted straight away.



Lighting is one of the things that sets my headshot photographs apart from other photographers. The lighting system that I have developed is unique, clean and very classy. I make it all about you with a nice simple clean background to avoid any distractions. Backgrounds come in all sorts of different colours so we can experiment to see what best fits and look at your after.The final results

At the end of the session we will sit down and review the images that we have captured. This is where we make the selections of the photographs that we are going to be sending out to retouching. Most people struggle with selecting their own photograph, so I am available to help you pick out the ones that look the best. This is not a sales session. Most of the time I have to talk people out of purchasing specific photographs and explain to them why a certain photo of them may not be the best one.



Retouching is another important component of getting a really good photograph. The difference between a good photograph and a great photograph start with having an actual human do the retouching. A common practice amongst a lot of headshot photographers, is to use automated software that can make the skin look plasticky and very natural. I’m interested in showing you in your very best light while still looking like you. You will notice from my gallery, all my photographs have been edited but still look very clean and natural. My retouchers know my requirements well and deliver incredibly high level images. If there is anything that you specifically want looked at during the edit, we can arrange for it to be included as part of the editing process.


Wrap up

As you can see, the process is very specific and defined and with intention. This is the best way to know exactly what to expect when you book a headshot session with me. If you are in Sydney and you are looking for a premier Sydney headshot photographer, get in touch with me to see if we are a good fit to work with each other.



The process of getting the perfect headshot photo