Website Photography Guide
DA/Creative's guidelines for having photos taken for the key member(s) of your team to be used on your site.
Work with a professional photographer.
We strongly suggest you hire a professional photographer to take the headshots for your website. We want to showcase your company in the best light possible and communicate your brand's story. This is best accomplished by professional photography.
Consult with DA Creative for the desired look and feel of the photographs.
During our kick-off call, we will discuss the creative direction of the website, and photography will come into play. We will give you guidelines about what photo style will work well with your site. It might be casual and fun, edgy and minimal, or professional and serious. We will give you specific guidelines to pass on to your photographer. We can also be available for a consult with them to go over the creative direction we have set forth.
Webdesign Photo Guidelines
Take high-resolution images
We will most likely crop your photos when placing them in your website design, so the higher resolution of your photos, the better.
Subject In focus
Yes, we need to say this. We will discuss background focus below, but the subject's face, specifically the subject's eyes, should be in sharp focus.
Background in soft focus
We don't want the background to be distracting, so we recommend with portrait photos that your photographer opens up their lens, so the background of the photo is in soft focus (they will know how to do this). This will invite the viewer to see your expression, keep the focus on the subject, and make it easier to overlay any text or graphic elements in the background area of the photo if we need to in the design. Here are some examples of portrait photos with soft-focus backgrounds:
There are some cases in which we may want the background as well as the subject to be in focus, especially for a very wide angle shot. This could be to show background details that are important, or for some specific creative scenarios. Your photographer may also think this type of shot may be effective. We will let you know if we feel we need photos in this style for your website.
If budget is a factor, outdoor photography is ideal (or indoor photography with a large amount of natural light coming in from windows), as typically, photography lights and a proper photo studio will not be needed. In general, soft lighting works best. If you are shooting outside, generally the sun should be behind the photographer and ideally, a cloudy or overcast day creates nice soft light. If it is bright and sunny, you usually want to be in the shade, to avoid the harsh midday sun. Your photographer will know how to set this up
Happy, fun, confident! The tone of the website will determine the expression your photos should show, but almost always, there is a level of joy. If it fits your personality and the tone of the website, you can also try some shots with the subject laughing,
Being natural is another must-have. Stay away from extreme posing or unnatural expressions. A professional
photographers job is to be sure they are capturing an ideal and natural expression, and are experts at getting their subjects to relax and feel comfortable.
Most importantly, be you! Don't try to be something you are not. The more comfortable you are, the more powerful and genuine the photo will be, and the more a site visitor is going to want to know more about your business.
For women, a makeup artist is always a good idea if you can hire one. But with makeup, it should always be very natural. For men, a makeup artist is not usually needed, but if needed, very light makeup can be used for blemishes or sometimes dark circles under the eyes. A photographer will usually have blotting paper to control shine.
Wear what you feel comfortable in and you feel represents who you are. As a general rule, you want to stay away from very bright red/orange, stripes, patterns, and logos.
Less is more. For women, subtle earrings are okay, and maybe a watch or a simple bracelet. Please avoid necklaces or pendants. For men, you could wear a watch, but again, nothing too grand. You want to keep the focus on you.
We usually recommend staying away from costume jewelry, however, if it is part of your brand's style or personality of the subject AND it relates to your brand, they can be worn. But keep in mind, the focus should be on the personality of ths subject, their expression, and their eyes. You don't want to distract from that.
Specific Photo Types for your Website
Headshots for your "Our Team" page
Photographs of your team for the "Team," "Leadership," or "Staff" sections usually follow the same guidelines of a soft focus background with sharp focus on the subject's eyes. With these photos, you want to make sure you have some room to the sides and top of the head, but generally these photos can be taken with a portait, as opposed to a landscape orientation.
The location and mood of the photo should match the branding of the website. Here are some examples: