In the age of social media, profile photos are everything. And this means you need a good profile photo for your blog. But many bloggers struggle with this.
In general, we see one of two issues. The first is bloggers going too traditional. They opt for a headshot like many professionals use in their physical portfolios, but this reads stiff to blog readers. The second is going too casual. They use a profile picture they might also use on their personal social media pages, which—with a few exceptions—is too casual.
So, what is the goal? Something that reads open and approachable without being too unprofessional. To help you achieve this goal, use our tips below.
Hard light casts harsh shadows. Soft light creates gentle shadows. In most cases, soft light will make you look your best. Take advantage of natural light whenever possible, and if this is not an option, use indirect lighting.
The simpler the background, the easier it is to take in the focus of the image: you. This is important with profile photos, because most readers will only view them as small squares or rectangles on your page, and a busy background gives the image too much visual noise. If you do opt for a busy background, work in the theme of your blog.
But don’t choose a pose that is too selfie-like. You want the camera to angle slightly downward at you, never up, and you should favor one side over the other, but not too much. Try taking test shots from a few different angles to find the one that reads friendly but professional.
We have already mentioned you do not want this photo to read like a selfie, and the best way to stop that is to have someone else snap the photo for you. If this is not an option, use a timer on your camera, phone, or tablet so you can get enough distance between yourself and the camera.
There are lots of apps that allow you to quickly and easily edit photos. However, some of the options they offer go a little overboard. As you edit, save each new version of the photo, that way you can always go back to a less edited version if you take it too far.