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What Does a Personal Branding Photography Session Look Like? (and why not just a headshot!)

If you are starting or running your own business or active on social media then you need a Personal Branding Session.

Recently I was asked by my client to create a portfolio of images for her new podcast. The theme or target is women married to serial entrepreneurs. For those living in the Bay Area that means just about all of us, men and women, but I digress.

What does that look like? In designing her shoot we did a little brainstorming and came up with words like secret, confidential, inquiring, funny, humorous, tell all, reality. You get the idea. From there we created images that, like an actor, express emotions using facial expressions to illustrate the concept. The shots were to be contemporary in feel, crisp, clean. We shot in the studio and at her home with minimal props.

Another great shotlist came from my clients designer. Working in tandem with a designer is a luxury but something I suggest everyone do. Here is the shotlist:

  1. At least 1 large horizontal banner image (with "white space" to the right or left of you, for website copy to be overlayed) -- FYI will need 3-5 for a full website

  2. At least 1 good headshot (you smiling, friendly, great hair)

  3. At table with mic and headphones

  4. Sitting, arms crossed, smiling

  5. Sitting resting face on your hand

  6. Standing, leaning casually against a wall, head tilted, smiling at camera

  7. Standing, looking over your shoulder, smiling

  8. Can even try "funny" shots (you looking stressed, pulling hair out, head on desk, etc.)

  9. Family shots (probably for another shoot) - candid shot of you with your kids, loving shot of you and your husband, another of you jokingly ringing his neck...

  10. Possible locations: in your home (sofa/living room/office, backyard) coffee shop - key is lighting.

Below are the results and I will let you see for yourself how we hit the mark. I just love this photoshoot and can't wait to see the website and of course hear the podcast. (as of this writing, it will be launching soon.)

If you would like a free consultation, please don't hesitate to reach out to me. I would love to design a personal branding shoot with you. Maybe it's with food or fashion or fun! I can be reached at or 415-775-8944.

xo Elisa

All photos by Elisa Cicinelli. Hair and makeup by Elisa too!

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