A lot of people don't realize it, but I actually take quite a few corporate portraits, either as professional headshots, or for various customer service campaigns. Customer service campaigns account for the majority of my corporate portraiture at present; these portraits often require lots of dead space to be given in allowance for graphic design (I don't do that ;-) ). These are often shot in many different locations, but with the same basic formula.
And here is what they look like after the graphic designer does their thing (I don't have a finished version of the most recent images like this to show, so this final with graphic overlay image is from several years ago - full disclosure!).
For you photo geeks, the backgrounds are in no way "Photoshopped;" these photos are simply shot at 85mm f/2.0, with off-camera flash.
Other times a more straightforward picture is necessary. There are a number of other photos from this set that are for use in not-yet-released projects; you'll just have to stay tuned :-)
Then of course I also shoot your typical professional headshots, which can be used for any number of purposes.
This is MWAA's Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, and Dulles' Airport Manager & an MWAA Vice President. These photos are currently used as their professional images throughout The Airports Authority, and can be seen hanging at both Dulles and Reagan National Airports. In shooting these I was updating existing portraits of the governing body, and matching the new photos' lighting and poses to the existing set of images.
I of course can alter the background in many ways to suit different clients' needs; in the case below, I added a touch of color, to match her company's colors (I also include a standard graphite background version in cases like this, just so they have it on hand if needed later).
For the gentleman on the right, I provided a slightly more modern look, with deeper contrast, and a slight hairlight that helps give extra dimension to his head and shoulders.
Headshots are not limited to single color backgrounds either. In fact, they can be spiced up quite a bit with some slight texture behind the subject. This last picture is the only headshot in this post that was also shot with natural light alone.
Observant readers will have noticed that I take a very organic approach to retouching; in general, and unless otherwise requested, I remove imperfections, and leave anything naturally identifiable; in some cases I reduce noticeability, but I don't remove these types of things unless specifically asked to. My philosophy is to emphasize your best features, without making any unnatural alterations.
To see more headshots from previous years, check out my last post about headshot photography!