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Nailing Your Outfit for Corporate Portraits

When it comes to corporate portraits, your professional image is not only a reflection of your personal style, but it also communicates your competence, confidence, and approachability.

Whether you're updating your LinkedIn profile, crafting a compelling bio for your company's website, or preparing for a magazine feature, here are some invaluable tips to help you select the perfect outfit for your corporate portrait.

1. First, align with your brand identity. Just like a company's branding, your personal style should align with your profession and the industry you're in. Consider the culture and values of your organisation. If your workplace leans towards a formal atmosphere, opt for classic attire. For a more creative or casual environment, you can inject a touch of personal flair while maintaining professionalism.

2. Comfort Equals Confidence. Comfort is key. When you're comfortable in your attire, it translates into confidence, and confidence shines through in your portrait. Avoid overly restrictive clothing that might hinder your natural movements.

3. Stick to timeless classics. Classic attire ensures that your portrait remains relevant and impactful for years to come. A well-fitted, solid-coloured suit or blazer exudes professionalism and sophistication. Pair it with a crisp, tailored shirt or blouse in a complementary hue.

4. Opt for Neutral Colours. Neutral colours exude elegance and versatility. Black, grey, navy and white are excellent choices for professional portraits. These colours allow you to stand out without overshadowing your message or the context of the portrait. When deciding on colours, keep in mind:

  • Mid-tone plain colours, are universally flattering and help the image stand out on a page, they convert well to black and white as well.

  • Black is sombre, guarded, and safe, but in some cases doesn’t portray the traits you are wanting to project. If you usually wear a lot of black, try substituting it for richer, more neutral colours, such as navy, chocolate, maroon, or dark green.

  • Pastel colours, cream or beige, are often similar to flesh tones and can look weak, washed-out, and unflattering to your skin.

  • Consider Your Skin Tone by choosing colours that complement it. Cooler tones like blues, greys, and purples work well for those with cool undertones, while warmer tones like browns, reds, and yellows flatter individuals with warm undertones.

5. When possible, avoid sleeveless tops, as bare arms highlight the contrast between the tone and colour of your arms in contrast to your face.

6. Pay Attention to Accessories. Accessories can add a touch of personality to your portrait while maintaining professionalism. Minimalistic jewellery, such as a simple necklace or stud earrings, can enhance your look without distracting from your face. Avoid excessive or noisy accessories that might divert attention.

7. Avoid Busy Patterns. Try to wear solid-coloured clothing and when choosing patterns, opt for subtle ones that won't overwhelm the viewer. Busy patterns can be distracting and might not translate well in different media formats. If you choose patterns, make sure they're understated and don't clash with other elements in the portrait.

8. Grooming Matters. Your corporate portrait is a reflection of your attention to detail. Ensure your clothing is clean, ironed, and free from wrinkles. Pay equal attention to your hair, makeup, and facial grooming. A polished appearance leaves a lasting positive impression.

9. Do your hair the way you’d normally do it while wearing these clothes.

10. Test Your Outfit. Before the photoshoot, do a trial run in your chosen outfit. This allows you to assess how it looks and feels on you. Pay attention to how it fits when you sit, stand, and move. Make any necessary adjustments to ensure you look your best.

Your corporate portrait is a visual representation of your professional identity. By following these tips, you can create an image that accurately reflects your competence, confidence, and authenticity.

Remember, the goal is not just to look good but to communicate your value to your audience effectively.

Fabi x


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