Just the fact that you clearly went out of your way to get a professional headshot says a lot about who you are and what you’re trying to do. Right away, it conveys that you’re serious about your business, craft, job search, or career. Spending what it costs for a really good headshot demonstrates an investment in what you’re doing, and sends the message that you are committed to whatever it is. However, when you obviously took one of your wedding photos and cropped out your poor spouse, it shows a lack of effort and dedication.
It’s been written so much that I feel like a jerk even saying it, but COVID 19 has fundamentally changed the way we do business and communicate. No one looks great on Zoom, so having a headshot that shows you at your best can be quite useful in creating a positive mental image of you in the mind of someone you have yet to meet in person. You need a good headshot so that everyone waiting for the meeting to start has something beautiful to look at. In the case of masked in-person meetings, a headshot gets them familiar with your face from the bridge of your nose down. This goes back to #1 in terms of the mental avatar that people will make of you, but in an increasingly remote world the face that you put forward has become more important than ever before.
I’d say between 95-98% of the people I photograph tell me that they hate getting their picture taken. The reason is almost always because they think that they don’t photograph well, and I suspect this is combined with a sense that anyone who likes pictures of themselves suffers from some sort of narcissism. This makes me a little sad, because I want everyone to love themselves and what they look like no matter what. We have a weird culture that seems to value appearance over more meaningful qualities, yet if someone takes pride in their appearance they’re labelled as superficial and self-obsessed. People also tend to compare themselves to images that are manufactured, heavily edited, and not representative of reality.
With a photographer that works with you to find the exact lighting, direction, and background to make you look your very best, you can end up with an image that can make you feel good about yourself, and even help change some of the negative self-talk that can hold you back from reaching your goals. In this case, maybe you don’t NEED a good headshot, but having a positive image of yourself can make a world of difference in your level of confidence, which can translate into greater success in whatever you pursue.