Headshot V’s Portrait

Headshot V’s Portrait

Often I am asked by people ‘ what is the difference between a Headshot and a Portrait.

The straight answer would be ‘ Headshots are for business and your promotional material. Portraits are for hanging on the wall in your home or office’

The difference between headshots and portraits is not a matter of technique – but is in fact, one of intent.

Portraits generally try to tell a story about the sitter. A personal sentimental connection for the family I guess. They will generally be shot in a different lighting scenario and so will be more moody and add character to the sitter. They are allowed more shadow to the face than a Headshot.

Headshots are self-descriptive . They are shots of the head ( Headshot ). As a rule, headshots do not go below the shoulders and almost NEVER include the hands. Portraiture can include the full body and hands.

Headshots are almost always evenly lit or at best very light shadows, but must NOT be blown out ( highlights that remove skin texture from the sitter ) Having said this portraiture in all manners should not have blown out areas.

Headshots are generally used by business persons, actor, musicians and all staff members to represent who they are. Headshots MUST be shot at eye level and the sitter must be looking at the camera. This gives the viewer full engagement. Portraiture, on the other hand, can have the sitter looking off in other directions.

Above is a strip of three portrait scenarios. The middle one could count has a Headshot. But to me, it is a portrait. Also, the sitter is wearing jewellery with a name tag so that would not count for a Headshot

Now below, is a strip of three promotional shots. the outer two are headshots and the middle is a promotional shot. Again full length, so it would possibly indicate portraiture, but it was shot for a promotional manager who was the client. The client requested a full length shot for their company magazine. All three photographs use lighting that will evenly light the face with minimal shadows.

And  then further down here we have a musician who needed a shot with his saxophone. A journalist who wanted her headshots outdoors, and a framer, Les Cliffe who wanted shots for his website showing him at work and his guild commended title with him. Again it comes under the category of Headshot/promotional material.  You will notice the lighting style in all three is different. It is more natural and evenly lit.

fourTwographs - the art of getting you noticed.


Professional Headshot Photography

Your unique personality My goal is to pull amazing expressions from you, so that you appear confident, approachable and likable. Invest in yourself, and others will too!     07929 968139 Suite 1 First Floor, St Georges House, 2 St Georges Road, Bolton BL1...

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The Headshot – because first impressions count!

The Headshot – because first impressions count!

Your social media photo needs to be a true indication of your age and build. There is no point in pretending to be someone you are not. The more accurate the photo the better. It needs to represent who you are, it is your first selling point in getting you noticed.

Think of your headshot ( profile picture ) as an investment in your career. Any professional needs the customer to be aware of their work and in this day and age your online presence is very important. The truth is, like it or not, anyone today searching for you will do it on the web and the chances are, that your image is the first thing potential clients will see. Blurry, pixelated or amateur photography will make you look unprofessional and within seconds can make people click away and go elsewhere – studies say that the any given person will make a decision on working with you in one tenth of a second

Herein lies my job. Here at fourTwographs I provide you with the images you require. Anyone wanting to be taken seriously today should be exhibiting headshots on all their communication outlets.

Below are just a few of the locations that your true identity should be prominent.

  • Business cards

  • Website

  • Blog

  • Facebook

  • Twitter

  • LinkedIn

Not forgetting dating agency profiles, musicians and actors.

Creating that all powerful headshot can go a long way to creating that all-important, positive first impression. This is why I am here to help you to get noticed. You and I work to getting that online profile picture that will help you stand out in that crowd. A classic headshot will only really encompass your head and shoulders, so no real need for that expensive outfit, just nice crisp, clean tops without any over complicated patterns. that’s not to say you cannot wear matching tops and bottoms, it’s just that unless we go below a ¾ shot and on to a full length shot at your request, then the bottoms will not be seen within the shot.  

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corporate portraits – Headshots and why we need them

corporate portraits – Headshots and why we need them

Corporate Portraits and why we need them


Every business owner or creative/artist needs to be putting themselves in front of a camera. Whether it’s for your Website, Business card, Promotional materials, LinkedIn account, Facebook or Twitter profiles, and even that addition to your CV,  that image of you, is what potential clients want to be seeing.

I don’t  really need a professional photographer, do I?

Why not just crop out your friends and family from that picture you had taken at the pub, night out or even the summer barbeque, and use that for your business profile. I mean, I did get a lot of comments and likes on that one on Instagram/Facebook.

Let’s get real, they liked the smile maybe or the fact that you was drunk and still standing. In reality, yes there is possibly nothing wrong with the photo. It is after all who you are, but do you think it is a good representation of you and your business character?

Selfies are good are they not?

People liking and commenting are not really commenting/liking your ability to take a good selfie, you just popped up in their feed and they are happy to see you having a great time. Chances are they clicked like and moved on to the next post hardly really noticing your picture.

It saddens me that these business owners are not giving themselves the best chance of success.

If you happen to be in need of a professional who are you most likely trust, the one with a profile picture from a night out with friends or the one with a well composed and evenly lit corporate portrait, headshot, that shows they look professional and approachable? Not all but most people will instinctively trust the one with the professional photo. they say we take around 10 seconds to decide if we like a person by their profile image on the web. Don’t you think it is better to have the professional ‘Business Headshot’ on display so people will notice you quicker?

Not only will it build trust, but it will also help you stand out from all the other similar businesses that have settled for that quick phone selfie or night out shot.

Think portraits, Think fourTwographs

Here at fourTwographs we work in the ‘Art of getting you noticed’

So how do you know what sort of portrait will be suitable for your business?

Enter your email Below and I will send you a quick guide and some examples to help you decide what is most appropriate to attract your ideal customers to your brand. If after reading this guide you are convinced I am right, why not give me a call, I’d be happy to have a chat about your business and give you some guidance on our portrait styles, that could be getting you more attention than you previously thought possible.

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Professional portrait photographer for the corporate, creative and general public. All work undertaken within the Lancashire region and beyond. Contact John Bentley on 01204 775320  to have the studios give you the information required to book your portrait sessions, 

Bolton - Wigan - Chorley - Blackburn - Bury - Darwen - Clitheroe

And all across the UK from North to South and East to West

cat portrait – Siamese patrol

cat portrait – Siamese patrol

Cat Portrait



Human Owner

Today was not the best of days freedom wise. You see, it turned out that my human – Laura – had arranged for a gentleman by the name of John Bentley to come and photograph my best side ( a specialist in Cat Portrait ). In view of this occasion my human thought it warranted me being under house arrest for the morning. You see, John the photographer was arriving at around 11am and he obviously needed me to be around or he would have had a wasted journey.

For all intents and purposes, John seemed a reasonable guy, who immediately did what it was i needed – he reached out to me and gave me the attention I needed to make me feel this imprisonment in my own home had been worth it. He spoke to me by name and certainly seemed genuine in his adoration for me. Granted, he didn’t have much of a choice but to pay me the respect needed to get me to pose for him and my minion.

We started off in the living room whilst i posed by the patio doors – my hint at the potential of natural light – then I moved into the shadows of the curtains and then behind the sofa. John did mention to Laura that maybe we should move to a part of the home with more light. She suggested the landing where there was floods of light coming in. I decided that the patio was the best location especially as it was opened more 😀 My human dutifully opened the patio doors and the Cat Portrait session was to begin outdoors – I love it when a plan comes together.

My human dutifully opened the patio doors, allowing for me to casually wander out onto the wet flags. John followed with camera in hand and then began to tweak the camera and balance the settings for outdoor light. He did a bloody good job of it too, as you can see from these shots above.


John Bentley

John Bentley


As you have heard and can see from the shots of Smeagol, the 1 hour 45 minutes spent with this beautiful cat, paid off. Sometimes all it takes to capture the character of pets is to get down with them, have a lot of patience, and shoot with the aperture as wide open as possible. This allows for any distractions to be blurred out naturally.

Absolutely beautiful photos of my Siamese cat Smeagol! John wanted Smeagol to be at his most relaxed and in his own environment, so decided to come to the house to take the pics. Being a young cat, Smeagol was very unpredictable, but John worked wonders! Crawling around and even following him into the garden! He managed to get a really good variety of photos that truly captured Smeagols character. But as well as this, John is a really fun guy who just happens to be awesome at his job!


Customer satisfaction

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Last month you may recall I had a photoshoot with a wise gentleman and his three dogs. Mal, Sam, Brett and Molly. Well yesterday Mal came into the studios to collect the purchased fine art prints from that shoot. He was absolutely over the moon with the shoot and...

Professional portrait photographer for the corporate, creative and general public. All work undertaken within the Lancashire region and beyond. Contact John Bentley on 01204 775320  to have the studios give you the information required to book your portrait sessions, 

Bolton - Wigan - Chorley - Blackburn - Bury - Darwen - Clitheroe

And all across the UK from North to South and East to West

Pet Portraits pawTwographs

Pet Portraits pawTwographs

What a great and unusual request


We are often asked about or Pet Portraits here at fourTwographs. The other week we was asked if we would be interested in photographing a couple of snakes and possibly a bearded dragon. Not one to turn away a little experience I said yes why not, but could we possibly make some art with them. For example maybe we could look for a bald headed lady.

Well what  pleasant surprise when Linda the owner of these reptiles said ‘I know just the lady you need’  A couple txt messages and a quick phone call fixed us a date.

On the day I had to pick up the owner of the reptiles. I dutifully arrived to be met by four snakes – a royal python, a milk snake and two corn snakes – and then a quick 500 yard drive to her daughter’s house and pick up the bearded dragon.

Emma* – the bald headed lady – arrived at the studio and we spent 20 minutes getting ourselves acquainted and discussing the process we would be doing to capture these wonderfully, sublime images.



Emma has autoimmune problems whereby her immune system attacks the body. Mainly her hair and skin but also some of internal organs when it gets bad.

Emma said ‘I’ve had this since I was a teenager and now I’m very comfortable with the way that I look. I have the opinion that if people don’t like the way that I look then that isn’t my problem’

I would like to thank Emma for being a great sport and helping us create both art for the studio and some amazing pet portraits for Linda the owner. Who by the way can be seen in our next blog post when she decided that we did such a great job of the photography that she felt the need to be in front of the camera herself for some beautiful and sensual shots to be handed to her husband.

See we create a wonderful set of images her at fourTwographs that you can share with your family, no matter what the style, we can always help you capture some truly wonderful memories.