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What’s the difference between a specialist headshot photographer and a general freelance photographer?

By Nina Assam, Director at Soora

So you’re looking to book a professional photographer to shoot your team. You want someone who can come to your offices in order to ensure there’s less disruption to you and your colleagues. But where do you start and how do you know who the right photographer would be?

Here are four things you should consider in your decision process:

  1. Relevant experience
  2. Equipment
  3. Post production experience
  4. Studio to accommodate new joiners/refreshers etc

Relevant Experience:

Its like anything really, the old adage ‘practice makes perfect’ is relevant in the photography industry too. But here’s why its even more prevalent within this niche area:

  • The key to getting a good portrait is in the direction. A seasoned portrait/headshot photographer will instantly know how to direct their subject so that they are both relaxed and shot in the best way. This takes a great deal of practice as they won’t have much with each person and must work fast to get the best results.
  • Lighting – knowing how to light a person is very varied and again, with the right photographer who only does this, any outcome can be mastered quickly and efficiently. Sometimes the photographer won’t know what environment they have to work in until they arrive at the clients office, so knowing how to think on your feet and set-up quickly is essential.


  • Not all photographers will have the correct equipment to shoot portraits well. Specialist headshot photographers will have pro graded portrait lenses which are very different to what say a sports photographer or architectural photographer might use.
  • Lighting on location is critical to the overall outcome. Knowing what is required means the photographer has to know all the eventualities and carry the right kit.

Post Production Experience

  • At Soora we use a mixture of software to delivery the high quality results that we are famed for. Our post production treatment is award winning and unique to our style. That’s because we have spent years perfecting our post production skills to ensure the outcome is simply outstanding. Although most photographers use digital camera’s, not all will include the time necessary to produce a high resolution quality image in post production so its important to ask for examples of what their post production treatments look like.

Studio availability

  • A lot of generalist photographers are freelance and relay on working on location without the option of a client having the opportunity to attend a session in a studio. This is fine if you know you want a location shot using your offices (or somewhere outside close by), however if you opt for a studio shot (set up at your offices) and then suddenly find you have a new joiner who also needs a consistent image, then this is when a studio is vital. You can then send the new joiner to the studio so that the photographer can replicate the same set-up and deliver a headshot that matches what was done previously.

Contact Nina at Soora Corporate photography and video services if you’d like any assistance with getting your team shot today.