Hate Work Photos? Find out How to Get the Most out of Your Corporate Portraits

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What to Wear

This depends entirely on your industry and what you feel comfortable in. For example, if you are a construction worker, it makes much more sense for you to wear your work uniform that it does for you to wear a suit. Generally, we advise employees to wear clothing that:

  • Makes them feel confident
  • Is clean and ironed
  • Reflects the work they do

What not to wear

  • Plunging necklines
  • Radical patterns that will detract from your face
  • Colours that clash with your skin tone
  • Ill-fitting garments
  • Logos (unless they’re on your uniform!)
  • Overly trendy items – you never know how long your photo will stick around for, so it is always better to wear timeless/classic items
  • Wrinkled, stained or torn clothes
  • Shiny, sparkly or reflective items
  • Heavy makeup – heavy foundation and dark eye makeup can look terrible in photographs, so it’s better to keep makeup light

Communicate with the Photographer

The photographer is there to make you look as great and feel as comfortable as possible – so, if there is anything that they can do to make you feel more at ease, let them know! Is there a particular angle that you prefer? Would you rather sit than stand? Do you want a prop to hold? Would you like to try another pose? Your portrait will turn out much better if you are honest and open with the photographer. If you’re not sure about how your photo session is going, ask the photographer to show you the images they have taken so far. This will allow you to make adjustments to your pose and ensure that you love the end result.

Try to Relax

Most people are a little uncomfortable with the idea of having a corporate portrait taken. Here are some tips for reducing your anxiety:

  • Trust the photographer – they know what they are doing and they have plenty of tricks up their sleeve for making you feel more comfortable
  • Wear clothes that you feel comfortable and confident in
  • Allow yourself sufficient time to get ready
  • Inform the photographer of relevant insecurities
  • Breathe – taking a few deep breaths before your photo is taken ensures that you appear relaxed

Don’t Think too Much about What to Do with Your hands!

Get the Most out of Your Corporate Portraits - Porfyri - Blog

Ever been photographed and had no idea what to do with your hands? It’s a common dilemma. An experienced photographer will give you guidance before this questions even comes up. Personally, I like to ask people how they would be standing if we were engaged in a conversation – usually through this question we can find a pose that feels comfortable and doesn’t look posed. I also ask people to try out various positions and see what feels more comfortable – hands on hips or in pockets? Arms folded? Hands holding a prop (like a tablet or notebook) that you use for work? Usually, the pose appears more natural when people have something to interact with and feel ‘grounded’ by, whether it be a prop or an aspect of their environment (like leaning on a wall or placing a hand on a railing).

Remember to Smile

If your smile is genuine, open and relaxed, your portrait will turn out great. I don’t like to ask people to smile on command, as this always turns out false. Instead, I like to tell awful jokes or ask people to think about funny experiences they’ve had or hilarious people they have met. If a photographer does ask you to smile on the spot, thinking about a funny memory is a much better strategy than simply pulling your mouth into a smile.

Consider the Audience

Think about who will see your portrait, and in what context. Consider how you want to appear – relaxed and approachable? Highly professional? Intimidating? Friendly? This will determine the tone, background, pose and props used in your image.


Corporate portraits are used for company websites, business cards and promotional materials – if you want a photographer who will make sure that you feel comfortable and look great in your corporate portrait, choose porfyri.

Contact Porfyri Photography

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