Help A Girl Out With Her Author Headshot

Some people are naturally photogenic. I am not one of those people. Nor is anyone in my immediate family (sorry guys). The Rubins once made a photographer work harder than a Hooter’s waitress in a prison cafeteria. And the family photo still looked like crap. Talk about a contrast between genetic acceptability in real life and grimaced mutation in still life.

So you can imagine my pleasure in scheduling an appointment for an author headshot. Kind of like scheduling a rectal exam.

Ping! (Image credit: Microsoft Clip Art)

But I did my research. I scoured blogs and websites for advice on author photos. I learned the importance of finding the right photographer, one with experience in the niche. I learned a professional hair-styling and makeup application might be in order. I learned that skimping on excellence to save a few buck risks unsatisfactory and amateur results.

I learned all of these things and more. So what did I do?

I scurried to a J.C. Penney’s portrait studio. I waited for 30 minutes, watching a thirteen-year-old boy watch Bob the Builder. I listened to said boy tell me Bob the Builder was the best show on television, and like an idiot, I nodded.

But once the photographer summoned, the session proved quick and painless. No fuss. No small talk. Just the way I like it.

Unfortunately, once she deleted the mutated grimaces, only a handful of images remained. But within the paltry pile shimmered a few gems. Well, at least a few cubic zirconias. But what to choose, what to choose?

Can you please help me? You’ve helped me place my periods, choose my point of view, pick my books, and decide on dream posts. Why not help choose my headshot?

Here are the choices:

“Koala Carrie.” Aww, shucks that’s sweet.

Is the facial hair too much? How about a fun-loving nature shot instead?

“Field of Dreams Carrie.” I just loves me some grasses.

What? Too Elly May? Oh, you’re right. A serious, maybe even scary, countenance would be better. The book is a medical thriller, after all.

“Gollum Carrie.” Hide your children.

But what about the novel’s science fiction element? Perhaps this final shot makes the most sense.

“Yoda Carrie.” Do, or do not. There is no try.

So there you have it. Help a girl out with her headshot.*

But now I’ve shortchanged you—not a morsel of wisdom in my post. For a serious and informative piece on the subject, see the lovely August McLaughlin’s blog post entitled Mastering Your Author Headshot with Photographer Ken Dapper. Her post covers everything you need to know. Thank goodness for bloggers like her.

What about you? Does the camera love or fear you? Have you taken a professional headshot? Which one should I pick? Do you think I’m prettier than Gollum? On second thought, don’t answer that…

*To see my J.C. Penney’s winner, you’ll have to read my book. Oh, now there’s incentive…

All Carrie masterpieces created at

158 Responses to “Help A Girl Out With Her Author Headshot”

    • Carrie Rubin

      Thanks! Well, out of these choices, I guess Yoda is the winner. But you’ll be happy to know I’ll use a more dignified photo in my actual book.


  1. Anastasia

    You’re pretty in every pic I’ve seen of you! Not like me..the instant a pic developed of me the orbiting space station can see how the camera adds eighteen depths of RED to my face. Worse than in real life. I loathe cameras, unless I’m wearing tons of airbrushed foundation. Good luck. (go with the Yoda, it makes you look trustworthy)


    • Carrie Rubin

      Well, the only pics you’ve seen of me are the couple I’ve put up that are decent, present photos the exception, of course. Gollum is downright scary. But yes, Yoda does have a certain air of worth to him, doesn’t he?


  2. idiotprufs

    I find it hard to believe that a woman who has danced naked in front of the
    Amish, is worried about a headshot.


    • Carrie Rubin

      Ahh, good point. Maybe I need a photographer to shadow me in my home and catch me when I least expect it…


  3. WomanBitesDog

    Get a professional shot. You won’t regret it .This is a pro one of me – taken by default (a friend’s birthday present). now use it everywhere. Otherwise would only have hideous pictures to use…Yoda is best….


    • Carrie Rubin

      I’ll keep that in mind for the future. For now I’ll stick with my Penney’s shots. For all three people that read my book.


  4. Chris Biscuits

    ‘Field of Dreams Carrie’ looks like she’s looked up from a picnic for see some rapidly advancing threshing machinery, and that is reason alone for my vote.


    • Carrie Rubin

      In that case, Field of Dreams Carrie might not be around for long. Of course, then she could prosper posthumously.


Comments are closed.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 8,214 other followers

%d bloggers like this: