What is an environmental headshot?
In addition to many business portrait shoots where we use a solid background like white or black, we also photograph many companies with an environmental background. That is, we use the environment of where we are to create the background. As we use lenses with a shallow depth of field, anything beyond the person in focus become blurry. This bokeh effect can range from being somewhat out of focus through to unrecognisable features depending on the distance from the background and the size of the aperture used on the lens itself.
Business Portraits in the office or outdoors
An environmental headshot can create a warm and welcoming tone to the image. We can incorporate your offices interior design or architecture or work with your corporate colours
I had a headshot shoot with three management consultants recently. The plan was to meet in a hotel in Central London and to either shoot there or use the outside space. Of course being London, it was super dark, heavy grey skies and lots of rain. Not a problem as we believed we could use the hotel foyer. After a brief chat and lots of smiles with the concierge, we were politely told we could not shoot professional photography anywhere in the hotel.
London Headshots | Outdoors in the rain!
This is where 10 years as a photographer in all sorts of weather and environments from 40 degree heat in Dubai to snow in Wales comes in handy. After a 2 minute scout around the local roads, I found a great location. At least to my eyes it was. I found a short underpass with some trees and a cafe with tungsten lighting inside. I knew that the underpass would offer shelter from both the rain as well as ambient light around the people being photographed. I also knew the mixture of the trees along with the glass and steel of the cafe would make for an interesting background and the tungsten lights inside would add colour. As it was raining, I got the shoot done swiftly with both group and individual images for all three who had actually flown in from the Cayman Islands.
After the shoot, one of the men remarked about how I had spotted the space and he was surprised at how the images looked compared to the background when looking with the naked eye. I guess that I see the world slightly differently. I know that light and texture will create interesting backgrounds when out of focus in my lenses. From modern street scenes to derelict building, when out of focus, they can create unique and interesting backgrounds to business portraits and headshots.
I love finding a location for a client that suits their personalities and branding. They can be in the most unlikely of places!! Even within an office building itself, there are textures and light that will create unique backgrounds that can incorporate company colours without being too obvious.
We recently worked with Romans International. They are a supplier of very high-end sports cars like Ferrari and McLaren. for their images, I wanted to get across the industry they were in without having the team leaning up against a supercar. Instead, I shot in the showroom itself and positioned people slightly away from the cars behind. With the car out of focus behind the subject, it gave a feeling for what the company did with more subtlety than being stood next to the latest Lamborghini.
Whatever the environment, inside or outdoors, there are always some great places to photograph interesting environmental headshots. If you would like to find out more, call Helen or Sean on 020 7523 5325 in London and 01275 568 669 in Bristol.