Author Archives: portraits2018

Six online uses for personal branding photographs (and they’re all free!)

Boating portrait

In today’s image saturated world of social media, relying on a simple head and shoulders portrait to communicate your brand message is no longer effective. You need to show your personality to attract people to your business. What are some ways to do that online?

1. Content for social media

LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, the list doesn’t seem to end. Some experts recommend posting to Instagram alone every day. Do you have 30 days worth of solid brand imagery for the next month? Show yourself working, your products, production methods, and anything else that would be of interest to possible clients.

2. Your Google identity

Did you know your face follows you around the Internet with Google’s help? Every time some one reads an email from your Google account, they’re seeing an image of you (assuming you uploaded one). Just seeing that single image can generate thousands of impressions every month. Make sure it’s a good photo.

3. Your email signature

Like your Google identity, your email signature gets read constantly. Did you know you can put an image in it with the help of a third party service? By making it a strong image with a call to action, now you’ve got a lead generator being sent out with every email.

4. Gravatars

What’s a gravatar? It’s a globally unique avatars introduced a few years ago. Although not quite as popular today as it once was, it’s a way for your image to follow you when commenting on blog posts. Make it the same as your digital presence on other sites and you’ll be recognized as the same person.

5. LinkedIn profile

It goes without saying a great LinkedIn profile picture is an absolute must. But do you post about your business? What are the images you’re using for that? Sure you can post without an image, but it’s now very well understood that posts with images attract more attention. And if you’re posting regularly on Instagram you can use the same library of images because now you’re reaching different audiences.

6. Website about me

What does the picture on your “About” page say about you and your business? Most websites will only have a single image, but why not post several and tell a story? Potential clients love looking behind the curtain to see your process at work, so why not show them?

Analog Marketing

There are also a plethora of other uses for personal branding for print collateral ranging from business cards, brochures, and direct mail to full magazines. So if you’re thinking about a shoot don’t forget about all the offline ways you can use those digital photos.

Modern Glamour Photography

One of the things we get asked a lot about is glamour photography. The word glamour is synonymous with the 80’s studio chain Glamour Shots. The hallmarks of the look were big hair, bad makeup, and even worse poses. And if you grew up when going to the mall was the highlight of your weekend, then you probably have your own Glamour Shot photos.

What’s missing from that kind of photography is the beauty and personality of the subject. It’s not just teasing your hair and overdoing the makeup. For us, being a beauty photographer is all about making you feel gorgeous on the inside as well as the outside. Your photos should make you look strong, confident, and beautiful which is why every glamour shoot we do is done in a Vanity Fair style.

The look is sophisticated and elegant with a lot of emphasis put on the design of the shoot. That includes paying close attention to scene setting, wardrobe, and makeup so that they all come together effortlessly. The photographs should look as though they’re magazine quality. So for some clients this means a bright, colorful, glossy look while for others it’s something softer and more muted. Ultimately you get to play art director by helping to plan the look of your shoot.

Below are a few photos for inspiration, including some recent ones that were featured here on the blog.

Vintage floral hair style

High key glamour portrait

Client wearing sequined blue dress

Eyelash skirt

Interested in doing a glamour shoot of your own? Get in touch, we’d love to hear from you!

Experimental Portraits with a Floral Theme

As a creative and business owner at the same time, it’s really important for me to stay inspired to create beautiful portraits for clients. Without that inspiration it’s easy to fall into a routine. Creating new personal work is the key to innovating and growing as an artist. I’ve learned that it’s simply something I have to do regularly to keep the desire strong to create.

I’ve been experimenting with some stylized portrait work that is a blend of beauty, fashion, and portraiture. One idea I’ve wanted to try for quite awhile is a floral look that is soft, feminine, and sensual. This idea isn’t new; it’s existed in the art world for thousands of years so it’s certainly not anything original on my part.

Going further, I wanted to take the look and make it a bit bohemian and vintage. I’ve done some floral portraits in the past, but I either wasn’t happy with the results or it featured tones that were bright and colorful. This look I ended up with for this shoot is very different for me as I tend to work with black and white for most of my personal work.

So together with Martha, a model friend of mine, and my partner Kerri, we spent an afternoon playing around in the studio. For the wardrobe we went with a simple wrap of tulle as well as some ribbons to provide some added sensuality and femininity. Kerri did some magic with the makeup and hair, including placing the flowers. Overall I was especially pleased with the two shots below.

If you think a look like this would be fun for your glamour portrait shoot, we’d love to hear from you. Part of the fun of doing a shoot is being creative so we’d love to hear your ideas!

Vintage floral hair style

Hair piece with ivy

Fashion Portrait Shoot with Amanda and Chris

Chris and Amanda came by the studio last week for a couples portrait shoot. Rather than a traditional romantic look, we went for a look that was more fashion forward by using dark colors and strong poses.

The styling was loosely based on the annual Vanity Fair Oscar portraits shot by Mark Seliger. It’s always fun to incorporate a fashion look into a photo shoot and these guys killed it. The key to making it work is a little bit of planning before the shoot to find some inspiration, and then the wardrobe, to make it work.

What you wear to a portrait photo shoot is probably the most important thing that will determine the quality of the final photos. If you have something in mind but don’t have the clothes, there are lots of options. Borrowing from friends and family is probably easiest and least expensive. It’s also possible to rent high end gowns from online places like Rent the Runway and tuxes from the local mens’ shop. Check out the glamour portfolio page for some ideas.

Chris wore an all gray suit with just the vest to give the images a bit less formality while Amanda went with a sexy black dress with a deep sweetheart neck line. Both were perfect for adding sophistication and a feeling of luxury.

Loved working with these guys on this shoot. And thanks as always to Kerri for an awesome job on hair and makeup!

Portrait with woman sitting with dress pulled up

Couple wearing black

Boston Fashion Stylist Tara West

I had the pleasure of working with Tara West on a recent fashion shoot. When I’m shooting a commercial look, she’s my go to stylist and has helped me on different shoots over the last couple of years. But this time instead of prepping wardrobe for the camera, she was the model and she absolutely killed it! In addition to working with photographers, she runs her own fashion blog at Tara West Fashion, maintains an active Instagram account, and works with private clients.

Thanks to Kerri Herlihy for the makeup assist. Here are a few of my favorite images!

Standing portrait

Teal skirt with sweater top

Yellow dress portrait

A timeless wardrobe piece for your shoot

So you’ve decided you want to treat yourself, connect with your inner carrie bradshaw, and book a beauty shoot. This will not only help you connect with a enhanced side of yourself, it will also push you to feel a new type of confidence. Now that you have it booked I bet you are ready to run to the store to find a few outfits; but what if I told you the perfect outfit for this type of shoot is right in your closet?

Little black dress

A little black dress goes a long way. Here are the top 3 reasons you must bring your favorite LBD (little black dress) on your shoot day.

#1 : Everyone Has One!
Chances are you have more than one LBD in your closet. Try them on and choose the one that makes you feel the most empowered. You can even raid your best friend’s closet to find something new. When you look good, you feel good, and that energy always creates unique and authentic pictures.

#2: It Shows off the Curves
LBD’s do a great job at accenting your body’s shape to show off your natural curves effortlessly. This outfit will give your photos a great flow while also giving off the feel a beauty shoot calls for. It will allow you to embrace your curves and enjoy the experience.

#3: It’s Timeless
You are going to want to show off these pictures to your hubby and close friends years from now, am I right? Shooting in a LBD ensures your look and style is will still be relevant. Something elegant & classic like the LBD will allow you to avoid purchasing photos that look like an old tv show in a couple of years.

Adding the little black dress to your plans for the day is one of the first pro tips beauty photographers share with their models and it is the next step after booking your shoot! This way, you can never say, “I don’t have anything to wear”. Go simple, and be bold.

To book a beauty shoot with us drop us a note at erik @

To ask us some questions before your upcoming beauty photoshoot DM us on Facebook & Instagram.

Makeup for your shoot

Makeup image

When planning your shoot one of the most important things to consider is the look of the makeup. Do you like a more natural girl next door feel or something darker and heavier? Regardless of which you prefer, the makeup is the secret weapon that really elevates the quality of the photographs. That’s why it’s included in every shoot!

A more natural look may involve just as much makeup as something that looks darker so the amount applied isn’t always a good guideline. It’s better to think about the overall look concentrating on the eye. When your eyes “pop” in a photograph it makes them look bigger which makes the photo more inviting to the viewer. It’s also where the the lights are set for the shoot since it’s all about the eyes in a portrait.

Obviously a dark liner and smokey eye will pop more, but if you’re going for a business portrait the makeup won’t match the intent of the photo. Likewise if you’re after sexy and seductive, a subtle natural look won’t match easier. So how do you decide?

It’s pretty simple actually; start with a light touch gradually going darker until you find your sweet spot. And if you’re doing boudoir or a glamour shoot you may opt for two looks, one that’s lighter and one that’s darker to help maximize the variety in the final photos. Just remember it’s always easier to go darker rather than removing makeup to go lighter.

Our makeup artist Kerri does makeup for clients every day so she’s got the expertise to work with you to find a look that suits you.

Model for a day Jill

Jill came to the studio a couple of weeks ago to help with a test shoot I was doing. She did a great job in front of the camera which resulted in us getting some great images. She brought three outfits with her so we could get a variety of looks that ranged from something a little dressy to just a plain T shirt. Kerri did a great job making her lashes pop to show off her pretty eyes.

She’s off on a new adventure with a permanent move to the Caribbean and we wish her the best. Thanks Jill for coming out to shoot!

Glamour portrait sitting on chair

Resting on blocks

Green T Shirt

Leaning against wall

Erik & Kerri

Welcome to the new website!

I’ve finally gotten around to updating my website. The old site was looking tired while the blog wasn’t getting the full attention it deserved. Here’s to changing that!

Watch this space for recent shoots, informational articles, and what’s new at the studio. For now though have a look around the site while picturing yourself doing a shoot. 🙂