An important element for a professional branding image is to create a photo that actually looks like you.
The focus of a personal branding image is the face, so attire and background should be in harmony. I prefer solid colors and attire that matches the role. The general rule is to photograph light colored clothes on a light background and dark wardrobe on a dark background. I recommend that my clients bring multiple clothing changes, and both light and dark wardrobe, so we may capture several looks.
With your face as the main focus of the image, the next decision is all about the expression and how you want to be seen by the viewer. For a LinkedIn profile picture, most folks want to appear approachable, trustworthy and confident. How friendly you want to be is entirely up to you. Generally, a smile is appropriate but a big toothy grin may not be the best choice depending upon your profession and role.
The most important aspect for me is engagement with the eyes. A branding image should have excellent eye contact. As the old adage goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Make sure your image paints the best portrait of you.
Black foamcore background | Studio Lighting
Location: Tucson, Arizona.