Nailing the author photo

I almost forgot to write a post for today. I managed to catch a cold that hit me a bit harder than usual. I'm trucking through, but my brain is honestly only working at half capacity.

Which make the fact that I'm getting new headshots tomorrow a bit more interesting.

My first headshot (seen below) was done via the "get it done cheap" method. We have a fairly nice camera and moderate weather so I made my husband stand in our backyard and take my picture while I tried not to make awkward faces.

The result wasn't the best, but it was good enough. So if that's you in that picture. Just starting out and without the funds to invest in a pro. Or maybe not really sure what you want your headshot to look like. You don't have to go out and spend a ton of money. This is one of those aspects of your platform where it's okay to not go all in.

I'm getting new pictures for two reasons. First, since that picture I have cut all my hair off. I waited to get new pictures until I was sure about keeping it. Now that I can't imagine growing it out again, it's time to update the picture with one that looks more like me. Second, as good as our camera may be, it's not quite the same as a high quality pro photo. I ran into some issues trying to get my picture into the back of my books, so this will give me a higher quality photo to use next time.

There are all kinds of tips on the internet about how to take good pictures. Like, wear long sleeves so your arms don't pull attention away from your face, and avoid strong patterns in your clothing. Don't use makeup with a glitter to it as that can reflect the light oddly. These are all great tips that I plan to take into consideration.

But the biggest tip I can give, and that I'm going to try to remember tomorrow, is to be yourself. I'm smiling in my original headshot, but not really. And that's not really me. If you've ever met me in person, you'll know that I smile all the time. I'm one of those high energy people and in large crowds it only get's amped up.

So a demure smile might look nice, but that's not me. Even my mom thought I needed to swap it out for one with a bigger smile.

Your author photo should say something about who you are, both as an author and as a person. Don't be afraid to let your personality shine through and give your readers a better look at the real you.

Stay tuned. If anything crazy happens tomorrow, I'll post a follow-up to this on Friday. Maybe a lessons learned from a pro photo shoot. :)