Be the Mirror for Your Client


The Headshot


Lesson Info

Be the Mirror for Your Client

They have no clue there's no clue they don't know what they're doing so guess what? You have to be their mirror like I can guarantee you right now guaranteed none of you know what your face looks like but your brain will try and tell you believe me if you knew if everybody knew what their face looks like they would never make zero face right? Why would somebody make a zero like why would somebody look in the camera like that? They would they we don't know what our faces look like and you think you know your face you don't know your face I do sell fortunes and I get myself in front of a camera I put the tripe on, I get the photo, I put a light standing there, I focus on it, I put the self timer and I move the light stand I stand there and I take shots of myself to inspect my face and well, I didn't know that was there. I didn't know it was like that I didn't know that I didn't know that I didn't know I did that I watch myself on video like I didn't know that my mouth pulled that way the...

y know that I didn't know anything people think they know their face you don't know your face has been on your face all your life and you don't know it so guess what ah portrait photographer's job is you have to be the mirror you're I'm your mirror when I'm photographing you I need to be the one to tell you that that is a disaster going on right there I'm just picking on them I have to be like thats good thats great thats not good you're doing this you're doing that now the problem is is that all of that is keeping the conscious mind in control when I want people not thinking about what they're doing so I go into a no man's land and go off the reservation with my direction so that people can't they don't understand what's going on and then they go instantly the subconscious mind will take over your expression in a all right right now when you guys were looking at me and I see your expressions changing when I'm talking that your subconscious mind going he's really doing it there's gotta go on her expressions there going you know I want you guys one of my favorite things and I talk I talk about this in the book so we might get to it later but I'll work on it when we're shooting is eyebrows eyebrow movement in society's rampant how many you flew here? How many are flying back? I just want you only two of you the rest you guys are here how many people have been on a plane I'm kidding, it's just all you guys anyway, I'm on the plane yesterday, so this is the way my brain thinks now because I'm always like, well, what can I teach what I learned and I'm I'm, uh, facial, I've always and when I was even, I guess a ce far back as I can remember, I always liked the human face like a view I live in the streets in new york for some reason, like I'm a scan artist like I'm scanning people like they're walking towards me and I'm looking at all their faces like I'm looking features I'm like, wow, look at that person look at this person like I think that the human face is the most intriguing thing on the planet I don't think there's anything cooler, none of us look alike it's so amazing, I've identical twin daughters, they looked like nothing like I'm like, I'm just like blown away of what we've all been given with our facial structure and our features and how we communicate and stuff like that. So I'm like walking down the street, always looking, so I'm on the plane yesterday and, uh, people are walking in and I sat down in my seat and then they're walking and looking for their seats now there's this concern on their faces usually like somebody my seat am I going to get a room for my bag? I got on too late I can't believe that you know they might have a kid that's freaking out behind them and one woman had the baby and she's like the babies screaming and everybody's like I hope I'm not sit next that baby and then you know it's and you see their faces when they get on the plane I want you to it when you're next time you're on a plane I want to watch everybody get on the plane early and watch people walk by you like they're using their eyebrows and mostly eyebrow they're looking around there like it's something I see what's going on you know who's that guy wants that guy looked at me like that I think I gotta get sit there like the howling I better my concern is that I got the think tank bags so I'm like I usually have my think tank backpack I'd use a shape shifter and my I used the international airport security bags so I'm always like I gotta get on that plane first because if it's a packed plane and I don't get my bag up in the top, I'm going to be there's no way this equipment is going underneath and it's happened where everything's packed and I've been like, look, I'm professional start like I will freak out if you put this bag underneath this plane usually I mean sometimes I put it under there but it's like so rare cause otherwise have freak out so I'm always getting on early guess what yesterday I get on the plane things are packed and I was like and I ended up putting it underneath the plane but I was like I was like it freaks me out so I'm always looking for that spot so I'm being like this so I want you just watch expressions of people now don't get weird like don't starts tearing at people you know? But if you go you're going to go out to a restaurant and watch people when they're in communication, eating and stuff or one of the greatest places where people are milling like in an airport or in a train station on buster or on the subway or you'll see the face doing stuff cameras immediately blank get people blank so they're like that's just weird we don't do that in normal life we don't do that you will never see somebody looking totally out to lunch in normal life it will freak you out you will run the other way they'd be like I mean you will just be like that persons were get me away from them right? But you take pictures of them like that why do you do that? You do it because I do it and everybody with a camera doesn't because that's the way people behave so what do we have to do we have to be there mirror we have to be able to tell them hey you know you're looking a little bit blank and this is going to feel awkward but I need you to do this until you get really aka mated in there and comfortable I need you to do some things that I'm going to teach you with your face there's three things on our face we can move you who knows what they are you got one you got one eyebrows okay what else lips or what is the one of the lips attached to your man what's the third one you can't move your chin let me see can you really not going to see your chin your nose you can't move your nose you could move your nostrils but I don't know that that's gonna create a interesting expression for the camera um ice ice eyes right so everybody go deer in the headlights go like be weird yeah go big big eyes go like this omen yes that's strange and unusual go ahead right come on there you go let me see how big can you make your eyes come on who's got the biggest I won't need somebody with big eyes oh yeah he didn't corner way uh all right so we have to be aware of this and we have to see it and we have to know what's going on so my job becomes so I'm coaching and I'm trying to rip rip the expression off your face I want to react shin things going too fast I want a reaction so I want to own their expression so I wanted to be reactive so I want to give and give a ah command or throw them an idea and I want to create something like make them do something this this girl having to do that which I thought was cool I don't know what she would use it for but but I like that because that means if they're having fun with me guess where the pressure of these shoot went out the window exactly so if there's no pressure on the shoot guess what guess who's having fun both of you both of you guys I do this every day I've had people come in and they give me a hard time or whatever and it becomes a hard day there's a couple things that I that I try to abide by one is a quote that I like that from a guy named bill go professionals or at their best regardless I'm a pro stuff could be hitting the family crazy I gotta be a pro you know I was having a rough day the other day um you know what's funny is that I shoot two three, four people a day uh and you will go through the gamut of avoiders and posers and people with their self accepting gaz gap is so huge and you have to you have to like do somersaults in front of them to get a good picture or whatever um and sometimes I'll get to like the third person and I'll be like if this person is like the other two people I'm just gonna jump out the window myself you know? I mean it gets really hard but that quote is always there I'm pro they're paying me I've got to give them one hundred percent on the one that under promise and I'm going over deliver no matter how difficult of the day it is so I'm not happy I'm not miserable you know how many times I said professionals are at their best regardless that day it was crazy then the first two clients were like those people who like their face does not change whatever you say it's like this I could say, you know, whatever I could say anything and nothing nothing was changing these first couple, but what changes your day or the people? So the next the third person I was like this was at the point where I was like I could jump out the window this person's like that I'm hurting my legs are killing me I can't move, I'm barely walking up the stairs and uh and the next guy comes in amazing amazing. The guy was unbelievable, he's, like I was like, what do you need pictures like, I just want some. I need him for the hay wanted online dating stuff, he's, like I've never taken a penny. I don't know how amazing like, like, totally, I wouldn't. I would say he owned it almost right off the bat. Seven percent of people do that, they get in front of your camera and they look in it and they just are like, what do you want me to do, what you need me to do today, peter. I'm like, you're weird. Why are you not changing when I stick this thing in front? Your face, guess who goes in your portfolio, those people, for sure, because they're going to look the most chilled. They're going to be the best it's gonna be the best for you because you got those people in there.

Class Description

In this class Peter Hurley, author of “The Headshot”, reveals his methodology for capturing amazing headshot portraits.

Hurley spent the last two years formulating these unique concepts into his highly anticipated book and will demonstrate how his simple techniques can help you bring the best out of every person you photograph. His “squinching” phenomenon has gone viral and continues to have people using his signature lower lid move every time they step foot in front of a camera.

Tune in and watch Peter work his headshot magic in The Headshot.

Want to know what's in Peter's bag? 



This is a fantastic course! Peter clearly explains his techniques on how he brings out the best in people, to obtain the best headshots possible. There is a wealth of information here, presented with some humor, humility, and a must see for anyone who wants to learn or improve their headshot photography skills.