University of Southern Indiana

Helpful Hints for a Better Portrait

KESHO student organization

A printable PDF of Helpful Hints For a Better Portrait also is available. You can also click on the Pinterest tab for a comprehensive guide from what colors photograph well to videos on how to pose for flattering head shots.

The most important thing to remember for your session is to relax!

Everyone has their favorite clothing. However, not all clothing photographs well. Solid colors are best because they will allow more focus on the face, which is the purpose of the portrait. Clothing with stripes, prints and patterns will force the main point of focus toward the print and away from the face. Long sleeves look nice because covering the arms draws attention toward facial features. Additionally, darker clothes tend to be most flattering to the figure. 

For those who do not have access to Pinterest, here are some links of interest:

A hair cut at least a week to two weeks before the session makes grooming and styling before a photo easier. Bring any styling tools you wish to help you during the session. Men, shave just before your session. This will help alleviate any shadowing in your portraits. Beards or other facial hair styling is your personal choice.

Makeup should be applied as normal. Keep in mind that light lipsticks may not show up well in the photos. Use lip gloss if you normally don't wear lipstick. Adding color and/or shine will give your face more overall color. You are welcome to bring powder with you as this will assist in reducing any shiny spots that may occur during your session.

Blemishes and Scars
We are 100 percent digital and can remove most blemishes. Let our photographer know if you have any marks that you want removed. Otherwise our policy is to not remove marks or blemishes. 

For individuals who wear glasses, do so if you wish. While we are digital, we cannot correct all lens glare. Often times tinted lenses will turn dark in the studio resulting in dark eyes, and we cannot fix this. If you wear contacts we suggest you wear them for your session.

Submitting a Headshot
Photography and Multimedia does not accept submitted headshots. See the University Headshot Directory Procedure for more information.

Contact Photography and Multimedia


Send Email to