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Blog Medium Image2019-02-13T14:23:54-07:00

No Tears Over This Spilled Wine!

Originally posted July 07, 2015  About ten days ago I received an email from Madeline Puckette, founder of the popular blog Wine Folly, to create a portrait of her to accompany an article in Wine Enthusiast Magazine featuring her as one of the top forty most influential people in the wine industry under the age of forty. The were three requirements; the [...]

By |August 26th, 2015|Categories: Uncategorized|

What Can a Bike Teach You About Life and Business Goals?

Originally posted June 16, 2015I’m a pretty competitive person. Actually, very competitive. Not so much with other people but mostly with myself. And nowhere is my competitiveness more evident than when I’m on my bike. Even before I knew what it meant to be competitive I always wanted to push myself to go farther and faster than my last ride. And in [...]

By |August 26th, 2015|Categories: Uncategorized|

Music To My Eyes

Originally posted May 28, 2015  Since the day I bought my first camera one of my favorite subjects to photograph has been musicians. Whether in the studio, on location, or in concert I just love capturing their creative energy and mood. During my decade in NYC I photographed bands at clubs like CBGB, Max’s Kansas City, and even some of the main [...]

By |August 26th, 2015|Categories: Uncategorized|

Five Easy Tips for Great Summertime Photos!

Originally posted May 19, 2015 This image was created in the bright, midday sunshine using both a reflector to block most of the sunlight and a flash to fill in the shadows. Summer is almost here and, with it, will arrive more beautiful warm, sunny days. To most people these sunny days are the best times to take pictures of family and friends while visiting [...]

By |August 26th, 2015|Categories: Uncategorized|

Keep Your Eyes Open, Even In the Worst of Circumstances

Originally posted April 16, 2015  What started as a cloudy, windless day quickly turned into a sunny wind tunnel with gusts hitting forty miles per hour by the time we got to La Conner, WA to photograph the blooming tulip fields. My daughter and I were disappointed the conditions had turned so badly for creating images. We tried for a couple of [...]

By |August 26th, 2015|Categories: Uncategorized|

They Look Great, But Do Stock Images Help You Stand Out From The Crowd?

Originally posted April 10, 2015Sometimes a stock image will hit the perfect tone for your business – and, unfortunately, someone else’s as well. I’ve seen examples of the exact same image used as the centerpiece for the homepages of two competing businesses in the same market. A few years back there was a news story reporting that opposite sides of the [...]

By |August 26th, 2015|Categories: Uncategorized|

The 3 Key Elements to a Winning Headshot

We’ve all done it; we’ve seen someone for the first time and immediately have reservations about them. Most of the time these reservations disappear once we engage in some conversation.

 But what if it’s a potential client or employer getting negative impressions from your headshot? It could be for any number of reasons, legit or not, including the clothes you’re wearing, your hairstyle, your expression, or who knows what else. If you’re not physically there to overcome anyone’s negative perception of you it could mean the loss of a great opportunity.  

 The Secret Formula

No headshot can eliminate all potential concerns someone may have about you. However, there are three basic elements that will always emphasize your best professional attributes.

  1. Professionalism. There are two elements to looking professional. First, you need to look sharp; clean, put together, and dressed in a way that is appropriate for your industry. Second, your image must be professionally created. You need to show you care about how you present yourself. No crop from a larger photo, vacation, party, pet, or hobby shot. Making the investment in a professional business portrait tells the viewer you take your opportunities seriously. In turn, they’ll take you seriously.
  2. Confidence. You need to own your image, look comfortable in your own skin. You need to look qualified and ready to handle any challenge set in front of you. But be sure not to cross the line into arrogance. Unless the job you’re looking for requires intimidation, perceived arrogance will probably eliminate you from consideration.
  3. Receptiveness. The last thing you want to do is appear uncooperative. Your body’s position, head angle, eyes, smile, and lots of other subtleties work together to tell the viewer you’re open to questions and collaboration.

 Rise Above The Mediocrity Trap!

You may feel your casual headshot is on even par with everyone else’s so there’s no need for a professional image. Instead, you should be looking at it this way. Because most people don’t put much effort into their headshot is the exact reason why you should have a professional headshot!

 Anything you can do to reduce the element of doubt can only help elevate you from your competition. With the majority of people researching you online before deciding whether to reach out, your headshot is one of the most important investments you can make in your success.

Until next time.

Charlie Cotugno

Charlie Cotugno is a Seattle based corporate/commercial photographer with clients ranging from individuals to Fortune 500 companies. He is also a speaker on the topic of leveraging photography for career advancement and marketing success. To learn how Charlie can guide you through your visual imaging process, visit, email, or call/text 425.501.9725.