Personal Branding sessions are becoming more and more popular with Instagram and social media being such an essential part of marketing any business. And with more women taking charge of their own professional careers, building a successful self-owned business is more accessible than ever! That’s exactly why I love working with female entrepreneurs, like Leah, who is starting her own coaching business and was in need of a photography session.
Planning is everything
From the very start, it’s all about telling a story of who you are, your beliefs, and your personality. It’s about selecting wardrobe that not only represents your style, but also photographs well. Location scouting is a big part of pulling everything together and we work with colors and themes to create the final look.
Since Leah was an hour and a half away from me and needed her images ASAP, it made sense for us to do her Styling Consultation on the same day, right before her session. After our phone consultation, she had a really good idea of what pieces she needed to buy in order to have the best selection for the photoshoot. Once I arrived on the day of her session, we simply went through everything together. Even taking an hour to do this makes a huge difference. It’s a skillset that took years to develop (my nearly-a-decade in advertising definitely helped) and I’m thrilled to be able to help my clients create a session that goes way beyond some pretty pictures. When it comes to branding and making the most out of our time together, the images NEED to tell a story, be conceptual, and actually SELL what you’re offering!
Being at ease in front of the camera
Unless you’re a professional model, you probably feel pretty uncomfortable in front of the camera. And guess what, you are NOT alone.
Leah, like most people I work with, felt unsure of how she would look in portraits. We’ve all been photographed badly in the past. We’ve looked awful in pictures and may be weary of repeating what happened previously. And as they say, I’m not only the photographer, I’m also a member of the “hate being in front of the camera” club. The truth is, looking good in photographs isn’t some innate talent that you either have or you don’t. It’s a learned skill. I spent years trying to figure out how to make sure the people in front of my camera have a fun experience that guarantees a good result in the end. Turns out, it’s not magic! It’s something anyone can learn, and having a photographer who can help you with posing, put your at ease, and direct your story during your photoshoot is incredibly important.
Leah’s session was two hours. During that time we were able to capture six different looks and create a portfolio of different images she can use to promote her business on Instagram every day, for the next three months. There is no way we could have done that much without first having a plan (see above) and then moving quickly. I don’t like wasting time. I don’t linger or have misgivings about what I’m photographing. Once we get the shots we need, we move on. Having experience with capturing portraits, knowing how to use the camera equipment, and having a shot list allows us to move quickly through the session.. and that is the best way to maximize your investment with a personal branding session. We don’t have the luxury of having the whole day, or a week, like a commercial shoot does.. which is where experience and skill really takes over to deliver in a short period of time.
Leah is a Mom. She also lives on a gorgeous organic farm in Connecticut. She has a ton of experience with entrepreneurism and has built several businesses from the ground up. She wants to help women find their purpose, balance, and freedom while building their own businesses for a better world. She meditates. And reads. And loves her Productivity Planner. Her personal branding photos need to reflect all of those things! It would certainly be easier to just do what everyone else it doing.. but with every session, the types of shots we get are completely original. And that’s why this collaboration is so important. It’s never just my idea of what the images should look like.. it’s a creative process that takes into account Leah’s unique interests, talents, and skills.
Below are some of my favorite images from Leah’s Personal Branding Session..I hope you enjoy them!
And be sure to follow Leah on Instagram @leahroseup.