The Business of Professional Headshots

Lesson 10/38 - Basic Seated Pose for Headshots


The Business of Professional Headshots


Lesson Info

Basic Seated Pose for Headshots

This is the next photo. I did not have a full-length photo of the seated pose, so I had to use one of our creative live production teams sit in for me so I could shoot it this morning. So, you might get a kick out of this. Sorry. (laughter) There you go! Basic seated pose. I want to show you guys this, and we'll do a little more later. There's a couple of key things to make a seated position work. Okay. Because people have to be seated comfortably, and I do, believe me. Thank you, thank you. Nice job. Alright. So, when somebody is in a seated position you're going to pretty much do it the same way. They're going to sit down in front of you, and they're going to go like this, right, and they're going to face you. Alright. So, let's see what we can do here. Actually, it feels really good to sit. (laughter) Okay. You want the hips to be slightly above the knee level. Not even with it. There we go. You don't want them to be pushing and you don't want the knees to be too high. If the hips a...

re slightly above the knee level you're going to have a comfortably seated position. Feet have to be flat on the floor for this to work. You don't want people to be on their toes because these chairs spin, but this is a comfort level. So, the way to measure the heighth, and you're going to adjust it from person to person, truly, hips slightly above knee level. Position the body 30 degrees off-center. Just about so. Does that make sense? Then you're going to rest the palms on the top of the thighs. I'll tell you why I do this. Because people do this, or they do this, and they slouch, or they sit however, or they do this, or they lean forward. If you take the palms on the top of this I want you to watch what this does to my posture. You ready? Forces my shoulders back, and my back straight. Just like that. Palms on the tops of the thighs right here. Now if somebody comes down and they sit with their hands in their lap and they've got great posture, don't mess with it. If somebody poses themselves correctly do not screw it up. Just like any good piece of information, know when to use it and also when not to use it. Does that make sense? Alright. You guys in here. What are some of the biggest sort of a-ha moments? I see a lot of things being written down there. In terms of that posing, just so far. Starting position. Sometimes you just don't know where to start. Right, and starting with the feet. If you can start somewhere comfortably. The reason I do that every time is because it's an easy way to start. You can get more creative and you can move around and you can do stuff, but sometimes you get there and you just need a starting point. That's my go to. After ten years I do the same thing every time I start because it just gets me warmed up. You know, like, your first shot sometimes are the best of the session, but most of the time you got to warm up a little bit. That's my warm-up because I know I can nail it, and it's easy to do. So, those palms on the top of the thighs will force those elbows back and will give that shoulder position good posture. Alright. You with me? And then you're going to go straight back, and you're going to lean forward. Why are we leaning forward? Because we've got to bring the head and shoulders to be the closest thing to the camera that we're photographing. It's going to work every time. Sit, turn, palms, lean. You with me? That's all there is to it. It's like school picture day.

Class Description

Professional headshots are in demand! Learn how to break into this lucrative genre of photography in The Business of Professional Headshots with Gary Hughes.

Professional headshots are an easy addition to nearly every photographer’s list of services and in this class you’ll get up-to-speed on everything you need to know to launch a headshot business. You’ll learn:

  • 6 Primary styles of corporate headshots
  • The gear that gets the job done
  • Basic posing theory
  • How to get clients and manage inquiries
  • Retouching, organizing, and delivery tips and techniques

You’ll also get to watch Gary in action as he demonstrates shooting and retouching a variety of headshot styles.

If you want to bring home more money and book more business during your slow times, don’t miss this comprehensive guide to running a lucrative headshot business from Gary Hughes.


1Class Overview 2Getting Headshot Clients 3Headshot Pricing Models for Individuals 4Headshot Pricing Models for Groups and Companies 5Payment and Delivery for Groups 6Six Styles of Business Headshots 7Headshot Lighting Gear 8Posing Basics for Headshots 9Basic Standing Pose for Headshots 10Basic Seated Pose for Headshots 11Head Position for Headshots 12Expression Sells the Image 13One-Light High Key Headshot with Male Model 14One-Light High Key Headshot with Female Model 15Two-Light High Key Headshot with Male Model 16Two-Light High Key Headshot with Female Model 17Two-Light Standing Pose Headshot with Male Model 18Two-Light Standing Pose Headshot with Female Model 19High Key Modern Headshot with Male Model 20High Key Modern Headshot with Female Model 21General Q&A 22Constant Light: Low Key Classic Headshot with Male Model 23Constant Light: Low Key Classic Headshot with Female Model 24Constant Light: Standing Pose Headshot with Male Model 25Constant Light: Standing Pose Headshot with Female Model 26Setting up the Background for Extraction Shoot 27Shooting for Extraction Headshot with Male Model 28Shooting for Extraction Headshot with Female Model 29Shooting Low Key Modern Headshots for Extraction 30Basic Headshot Facial Retouching Techniques 31Basic Headshot Eye Retouching Techniques 32Basic Headshot Retouching Techniques: Dodge and Burn 33Basic Headshot Retouching Q&A 34Extracting a Single Subject 35Creating a Headshot Composite 36F-Type Headshot Lighting: Equipment and Principle 37F-Type Headshot Lighting: Execution 38Shooting Headshots in Volume



This was an excellent class! The class covered so much information and great tips and ideas. Gary is funny and has an easy going approach, which makes the class that much more enjoyable. As a struggling pet photographer, I have been trying to find something to supplement my business with that does not involve children/babies, or shooting weddings again and headshots seemed to be a great option. After watching this class, I feel confident building up a headshot component to my business. Definitely recommend this class!