Headshot Owner’s Manual

Care & feeding of your new headshot files

You just got the email that your images from Omaha Headshot Co. have been touched up and are ready for download. What next?

In this article we’ll discuss the following:

Downloading your files

What’s Included in your package:

We are currently using Dropbox to be a simple way to deliver files. Included in the link we provide in your delivery email are two folders: High-Resolution and Web. Within each folder are the files you opted to have edited in both black & white and color formats.

High-Resolution files are generally what you’ll want to give your marketing department or the company that provides marketing materials for you. These files have the most flexibility to anybody who has photo editing software capable of sizing your photos to the appropriate size based on the need. If you do your marketing yourself, you’ll want to use the high-resolution files anytime you print your headshot in a format larger than a business card.

Web sized files are the same image, but sized smaller. This makes them easier to use for uploading to social media profile photos, using on your company or personal website, etc. If you download a version to your phone, this is the version we suggest.

How to download:

These directions are geared towards people not familiar with Dropbox. Dropbox users do your thing and skip to the Storing your Files section. You do not need to be a Dropbox user to download the files.

First, follow the link we’ve provided. We recommend doing this on a computer rather than your mobile device. If you decide to use a mobile device, it may ask if you want to use the Dropbox app or use a web browser. If you aren’t a Dropbox user, we recommend using the web browser.

Within dropbox, you can download either the entire package or individual files. We recommend that you download the entire package by clicking the “download” button on the upper-right corner on the screen showing both the “High-Resolution” and “Web” folders. This will allow you to download the whole package.

Dropbox download

You will be given the option to “Direct download” or “Save to my Dropbox”. Choose “Direct Download”.

This will prompt your web browser to start downloading a .zip file.

Important: do not right-click the images within Dropbox and click on “Save Image As…” Doing so will result in saving low-quality images.

If you know how to use .zip files, you can skip to the next section: Storing your files. If not, continue reading this section.

  • Windows Users:
    • extract the .zip file by right clicking on the file from the folder you downloaded your file to (probably your Downloads folder).
    • Select Extract All from the context menu.
    • By default, the compressed files will extract in the same location as the zipped file, but you can click the “browse” button to select an alternative location.
    • Check the “Show extracted files when completed” option
    • Click “Extract”
  • Mac Users:
    • Double click the zip file
    • The file will automatically be decompressed by Archive Utility into the same folder the .zip file is in.

Storing your files:

For the next couple years until you come back to us for new headshots, you’ll likely access these images several times from multiple devices. We suggest you use a cloud data service (Google Drive, Dropbox, Apple iCloud, etc.) to store your files. That way you can access it from any device the next time you signup onto a new social media platform.

Cropping Tips

The crop we send you is probably NOT the crop we’d use in most situations. Actually we love the horizontal orientation….but even in horizontal uses we’d likely go tighter.

Most of our headshots are made in a horizontal setting with the subject slightly off-center with plenty of room above and below the head for cropping. To demonstrate various cropping strategies, we’ll use this uncropped image of Victoria as an example.

We love it when you crop your headshot tight. Don’t worry about cropping off the top of your head. You communicate confidence and approachability through your eyes and mouth, not with the top of your head.

Horizontal

Most of the headshot files we send folks are in horizontal format. “Why?” you might ask. We think horizontal provides a more contemporary, sophisticated look. We love the negative space in an un-centered headshot. We also love the versatility the format gives you, allowing it to be cropped as a tighter horizontal, a vertical image or as a square, which is essentially what most social media profile images end up being (circles are basically square images that are rounded off.) Plus it gives you a clean canvas to put an inspirational quote or other text on to use in social media or web design.

Unless you are using your headshot very large (full-screen, for example), we recommend cropping your image a little tighter. We suggest you crop down below the top of your head, and up towards the bottom of the opening of Come down below the top of your head

For most horizontal uses, we suggest pulling it a little tighter, leaving more space below the head than above, like this:

Come in tight atop the head and leave a little more space below it.
The tighter crop adds impact and draws the viewer right into the eyes.

Vertical

Vertical crops are more traditional, and were a headshot mainstay for a long time: think Actors 8×10 headshots or class photos. We try to make your image more sophisticated than a class photo, but if you need a vertical image then it’s easy to get from our original horizontal layout. For a vertical headshot you generally keep the eyes centered and don’t crop off the top of the head, completing a more traditional look.

Here we leave space above the head and crop the image so that the head and eyes are centered.
This crop results in a more traditional, vertical look.

Square/Circle

Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn all use circles for profile photos. Circles are basically squares with no angles. Don’t tell my high school math teachers I’m describing it that way. For social media profile photos, most people are inclined to use their headshots too loose. We think you should go tight! Once again, crop down below the top of the head. We like to see some neck space.

Come down below the top of the head. Leave enough space to show the shoulders. If used as a circle, don’t worry about the corners being cut off. The goal is to draw attention to your eyes and mouth.
The tight crop gives impact while leaving more space on the bottom than top gives the impression of stature and importance.

General Cropping Tips

  • Don’t be afraid to crop off the top of your head. Generally you want to leave enough to give a strong hint about the hairstyle but it is unimportant to leave the whole head in.
  • Men with receding hairlines, avoid looking bald by cropping above your hairline instead of below it.
  • We generally crop a little below the clavicle (collar bone) and above the hairline a bit.
  • Notice our crop images above have lines looking like a tick-tack-toe line? That divides the image into thirds. For most non-vertical formats we generally try to have the eyes at about the top third line.
  • If you are using your headshot to post social media quotes, play with crops where you cut off the side of your face and allow lots of blank negative space on the side to serve as your canvas. It can be a fun look.
  • If you have any questions, feel free to ask us!

Update Your Profile Photos

We die a little bit every time we see somebody get a beautiful, grand-spankin’ new headshot and neglect to update their social media profile photos. C’mon man!

So do it right away! Log into all your social mediums and update those images. Need some instruction? Here’s some links on how to change your profile photo for some popular sites:
Facebook
Instagram
Twitter
Outlook
Gmail
Yahoo!
LinkedIn
YouTube
Here’s one more place you might not be familiar with, but should check out: Gravitar allows your image to be attached to blog comments and other engagements and is used by millions of sites across the internet.

Do it now! Your headshot can’t earn you any money if it’s sitting in your downloads folder!!!

Share the Love!

Our goal is to give each of our clients two things: a beautiful, sophisticated-looking image that communicates confidence; and a fantastic experience. We recognize that most people don’t like having their photo taken, but we strive to make it fun and maybe even a little educational.

We are an itty-bitty, local business. The money you spend with us will be put to good use (most of it goes directly to feeding, clothing and sheltering our kids!). If you are happy with your images feel that you had a fantastic experience, please spread the word. We LOVE testimonials.

Here are links directly to the review sections of Facebook and Google.

If you aren’t completely satisfied, please let us know how we can fix it.

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