Robert Julei Portrait Headshot and Fine Art Photography | Preparation for Portraits


how to prepare for your portrait

A compelling portrait is a collaboration between you and the photographer. You can help get the portrait you desire by following a few basic tips:


  • Wear clothes that make you comfortable and reflect your personality.
  • Bring multiple outfits. Select a variety of outfits as you desire.
  • Coordinate your outfit from head to toe.
  • Keep the tonal range of clothing in the same group; don't mix lights & darks in the same outfit.
  • Select 2-3 complementing solid colors in tones such as greens, blues, purples, burgundies, khakis, black, navy and denim.
  • Avoid large prints, stripes, busy patterns and bright colors - these overwhelm and create distractions in your portrait.
  • A black shirt or top is always a good choice.
  • Bring appropriate shoes, socks and a belt for each outfit.
  • Each person in a family or group portrait should be dressed in a similar color or tonal range.
  • For family or group portraits, coordinating outfits is a good practice. Jeans or khakis and a white or black shirt is always a good choice.
  • Be sure the clothes you select fit properly, especially shirt collar.
  • Short sleeves are OK, but long sleeves are best. Be sure to bring at least 1-2 long sleeve tops.
  • Dark clothes will help to make you look thin.
  • Traditional clothing styles will better stand the test of time.
  • Medium to dark clothes look the best on dark backgrounds.
  • Medium to light colors look the best on lighter colored backgrounds.
  • Earth tones are best for outdoor portraits.
  • Bring all clothes on hangers. Be sure clothes are not wrinkled.
  • If you plan to wear a tie, bring an appropriate blazer or business suit. A shirt and tie with no blazer/suit jacket does not photograph well.
  • For executive portraits, be sure your clothes are appropriate for your type of work and clothes are clean and pressed. Gentlemen may bring multiple ties; ladies may bring multiple accessories – we will help to select the combination that works best.



  • Wear your hair in your normal style.
  • Do not change your hairstyle in the days before your portrait session.
  • If you want to get a haircut, schedule it one week before your portrait session.
  • A fresh shave is important for men. Neatly trim beard or mustache.
  • Bring your hair care/styling products.


  • Minor blemishes and scars will be removed by retouching.
  • Avoid sunburn and tan lines.
  • Women keep make-up simple and natural*.
  • Avoid makeup with sparkles and SPF. You can bring your makeup to the session.
  • Your nails will show in some portraits. Be sure fingernails and toenails are polished and not chipped.


  • Keep jewelry simple and to a minimum.
  • Bring appropriate jewelry for each outfit.


Props are recommended. Bring props that are a part of your life and personality and/or profession. For example:

  • Musical Instrument
  • Leather Jacket
  • Letter Jacket
  • Sports Uniform/Jersey
  • Hats
  • Sports Equipment (lacrosse stick, bat, football, etc.)
  • Sunglasses
  • Hobby Items
  • Cars/Motorcycles
  • Pets (Pets are welcome, but please call in advance. Bring a leash and toys/treats to keep their attention.)

* Professional styling is available for an additional fee. Please contact the studio two weeks prior to your portrait session for more information.