Corporate Headshots

I was recently given the opportunity to shoot some headshots for Michael to be used for LinkedIn and other social media.  Whenever doing headshots I like to make sure there's plenty of conversation both before and during the session to make sure the client is comfortable.


Corporate Headshots with Marloes

I was hired by a company representing the WTC Netherlands Alliance Magazine to photograph Marloes, a Dutch lawyer from Amsterdam, currently living in NYC and working for E&Y.  We took a variety of shots starting with these...


As I'm sure you can tell, we spent our time together in Time Square.  This felt like the best setting for her since she's showcasing her time in NYC and to non-New Yorker's, what's more characteristic of NYC than Time Square?


I was thrilled to see that a few of these images made it to the WTC Netherlands Magazine.  Thanks to Frank van Bergen from ASEGA Media for finding me for this gig and to Marloes for taking some time out of her busy day to capture the snapshot of what her life is like now in NYC.

World Trade Center Netherlands Alliance Magazine #6 - TOC

World Trade Center Netherlands Alliance Magazine #6 - TOC

World Trade Center Netherlands Alliance Magazine #6 - Full Article

World Trade Center Netherlands Alliance Magazine #6 - Full Article

Kelly's Portraits

Kelly responded to a casting call I placed a couple months ago on Model Mayhem.  I had a lot of responses and she was my top choice but we weren't able to work together because of scheduling conflicts so I kept her info for another opportunity to do some test shots.

Darrin Estep Photography | portraits

I'm glad I waited.  Her features are striking and what I was pleasantly surprised to find out as well is that she is very down to earth and fun to work with.  I started with a few images that were near a window before I broke out lights.  Natural window light is hard to beat.

Darrin Estep Photography | portraits

She mentioned that she didn't have as much in her portfolio that are full body so I selected one of the dresses she brought to the shoot and we played around with this outfit.  

Darrin Estep Photography | portraits

We ran short on time so I ended with a few headshots of her with this dress.  The session was short but sweet.  I hope we can work again in the future.

ModelKelly Mulvihill
MUANicole Maldonado

Fashion Portraits with Melissa

I’ve been wanting a beauty dish for years now and just never invested in one.  For those not into photography, its a very popular light modifier mostly used for headshots that shapes the light very nicely on the subjects face.  Photographer friends kept saying, “just go to Home Depot and make it on your own”.  Nice idea but just not realistic for me for many reasons.  I decided to get one and now I’m kicking myself that I waited this long. I think there’s a lot to learn with how to position the light just right to achieve the desired result but I'm very happy with my first try. 

Darrin Estep Photography | fashion

Armed with this new toy, I posted a quick casting call on Model Mayhem and opted to work with Melissa (featured here) as my model.  She was really fun to work with and had so much personality that comes through the camera.  I also pulled in Lyndsey as the MUA that I’ve worked with in the past on this shoot.  She was great once again in bringing the drama to an already pretty face. 

Darrin Estep Photography | fashion
Darrin Estep Photography | fashion

These last few (above) were actually natural light (e.g., no flash).  Its funny how seldom I shoot without studio light but its fun to experiment with what you get from nice window light.  Until next time.

Real Estate Headshots for Matt

Matt is a friend and a new Real Estate agent.  He needed some headshots for his new role.  He approached me and said he wasn’t thrilled about the prospect of needing to have his picture taken - a common thing I run into - but I promised to keep it as painless as possible.

Darrin Estep Photography | Real Estate Headshots

Since this was a professional headshot for a realty company, it needed to be formal BUT it didn’t need to be a full-length shot. :-)  Here are a couple that we chose from the shoot with Matt.  Best of luck selling all kinds of property!

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Corporate Headshots: Vidhi from Stride

Stride has a new VP of Client Services.  Her name is Vidhi.  I sat down with her recently to capture her likeness to grace the pages of the Stride website.  Coincidentally, I almost worked with Vidhi a few years back.  I was just leaving a company and she was just coming in.  With Debbie as our mutual connection, we meet again.

Darrin Estep Photography | Corporate

My default for a shoot like this is to light it up.  Not this time.  There was some beautiful light  coming from a window camera-left so we went with that.  She has a great smile and we were able  to get some nice images in a very short period of time.

These are a few of my favorites from the session with her.  Vidhi, congratulations on the new role.  You’ve earned it and I’m sure you’ll enjoy working with the Stride family as much as they’ll enjoy you.

Darrin Estep Photography | Corporate Headshots

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Stride Corporate Headshots

Something that I think every business strives for is repeat work.  It strengthens the relationship and helps to solidify that you’re a good match with that client.  With Stride, and more specifically Debbie Madden, I’ve been working with her on creative projects for a few years now.  She’s been growing her business and has some new hires that needed headshots so they called me to do the shoot.

Lucille is the Head of Talent at Stride and comes from the General Assembly and Google most recently.  Here are some favorites from our session around the streets of NYC.

Darrin Estep Photography - corporate headshots NYC
Darrin Estep Photography - corporate headshots NYC

Lisa is also new to Stride and is the VP of Engineering.  She’s worked with Debbie prior to Stride at Cyrus and comes from London where she worked for The Guardian.  She told me she had one headshot from that time that worked for all occasions and didn’t fancy being in front of the camera but got comfortable quickly after some initial shots.


I look forward to continued interactions with this great group of people.  

Unplanned 30 minute photo shoot

I love unexpected surprises.  Three years ago I shot for the first time during WPPI with Meli and again in 2013 in the desert.  Her husband Shayne, was my assistant holding a reflector in the desert with wind blowing and sand kicking up while Meli was doing her best to avoid the glare of the sun and not fall in the cracks of the desert floor.  

I like to balance between working with new and repeat clients for a variety of reasons.  Funny enough, I had actually planned to work with one repeat model from last year and she was a no-show one hour before shoot time - you never know.  Meli noticed, through the power of social media, that I was going to be in town and reached out to me to come by.  After some texting, we worked out a small window of time to swing by.  

I had some other plans on the night we chose so we needed to make it quick.  As soon as she came in the door, I got her in front of the camera and started shooting.  To her credit, we managed to get a variety of images in about 30 minutes (which is super short for me).  Meli is a very experienced model that needs no direction.  She just knows how to emote these great expressions and move each time the flash goes off to vary the look each time.

Darrin Estep photography fashion Vegas

This one below was my favorite!  This one has been added to my portfolio!

Darrin Estep photography fashion Vegas

And a few more with the pink fuzzy coat.  Thanks Meli for swinging by.

Darrin Estep photography fashion Vegas

MUA In Front of the camera

I was recently in Las Vegas for WPPI and had the opportunity to schedule two photo shoots while I was there.  I posted a casting call and Bri responded.  Quickly.  I followed up with some questions and I got a response back - within minutes.  I emphasize this because its RARE!  

Anytime I reach out to work with another professional, I first try to sort out if I like their work and then, can I trust them to be reliable.  She was so fast (and consistent) with her responses to me; her work was awesome - so it was an easy decision to book her time.

I had two shoots scheduled so I hired her for both.  She was also very collaborative during the shoot which I personally welcome on set.  At the end of the second shoot, I asked her to step in front of the camera for a few quick headshots.  Here are my favorites.

Darrin Estep Photography headshot with MUA

A true pleasure working with Briseida, or Bri, as she likes to be called.  For those in Vegas looking for a make-up artist, hire her.

Lisa's Portrait Session

Today I am featuring a portrait session I shot with Lisa.  She's a professional violinist and wanted some updated headshots.  My goal for the session was to deliver a variety of looks she could use.

We managed to get both indoor and outdoor photos even with the chilly weather in December.  We started inside and her dog wanted to be a part of the action so, why deny her that opportunity.

north jersey professional head shots

Something I find myself doing on most every shoot is moving furniture.  I think I need to add that to the about me page :-)  I’m always striving to put my clients in the best light and without distracting elements in the background.  For the next setup, I wanted to feature Lisa on this old couch that had great curves and shape but didn't want the same backdrop as before. 


By this time in the shoot, the sun had fallen a bit and the golden hour had arrived.  That would be about 3:30 in the afternoon for December in the northeast.  She had a great outdoor space and we captured a few photos while we could both stand to be outside in the cold weather.


Before we closed up shop and moved furniture back in place, I wanted to get some dramatic photos of her playing the violin so….furniture move (again) and changed out the backdrop to black.  I setup one light, just out of frame to her left. I had her play a little something while I took these...


Amy's Headshots

I've been using a new service called Thumbtack to obtain business.  So far, so good.  The way it works is that a person in need of a professional service, like photography perhaps, would post a request for...oh, I don't know - headshots let's say.  As a service provider of said headshots, I have the opportunity to bid on the request.  If the requester likes the quote and my profile, they can respond and offer me the gig.  Amy did just that.

Amy's an actor in NYC and her agency wanted some new headshots done for her portfolio.  There were some pretty specific things they were after so we focused on that first and then did some other things to play a bit later in the shoot.

I called on Nicole, a makeup artist I'd worked with in the past.  She's great!  Very reliable, does great work and is always willing to help with more than make-up duty.  

We started with a variety of colors and tops on black since part of the requirement was to get some clean shots of Amy with this variety.  These are some of my favorites.


Whenever I do headshots, I like to get some that probably lean more toward beauty shots vs. a traditional headshot.  Here are a few that I liked of that set.


One of the fist things Amy mentioned to me when I met her in person is that she is challenged with *not* smiling.  I had to stop and think about that for a minute since I would say its much more common for people to struggle with having a nice, natural smile on camera.  Sounded like a challenge to me to come away with at least a few for her that she was a bit more serious.  As you can see from the featured image in the set above, she nailed it.  She even knew of a technique that I believe Peter Hurley invented called the "squinch".  Essentially its 'squinting your eye lids in a way that portrays confidence'.  We had fun playing with the look.


We then moved onto another location.  The set of three above are actually shot in natural light (which I don't tend to do very often).  I've shot in this location before and really like the options it gives you as an artist.

Only a few feet away from the previous set with Amy sitting on the bench, there was a post I had her stand near for a few images with a blazer and a set of glasses.  Again, with the goal of giving the agency some options with making Amy more marketable.

Finally, a few from the same location as the blazer but with just the green top and a bit more casual.  It was a real pleasure working with Amy for the first time.  She is as nice and down-to-earth as she is beautiful.  As the shoot went on, she also provided laughs "on the set".  I'll leave you with a few silly faces that came through in the session that got us all laughing.  

Bohemian Beauty Headshots

Connections, connections.  I like to point out how important this is since it proves to be the way new opportunities present themselves.  We had a great team on this shoot: Alex on make-up, who I met through a friend I used to work with while shooting a wedding, Lauren, Alex's second cousin doing hair who I met on this shoot and of course Stephanie, the model, who I met through Alex.  Stephanie is signed with Aqua Model Management and has been involved with some exciting work recently - appearances on Dr. Oz, work in a Marc Anthony and Wyclef music videos, 50 cent, ESPN, FOX, Style Network, The Heavy, and the list goes on.  Keep an eye on her!  

The location we chose was Bear Mountain in NY.  It turned out to be a half-way point for most of us.  The setting really looked like it would work until, just as we were about to set up (I didn't get a full light stand up) and the park ranger stopped us and said, "Hey, you all have to leave!  Do you have a permit? I thought I told you to leave already."  He wasn't very nice about it and on top of his kind words, he called the local police to make sure we didn't hang around.  Yikes!  We packed up and went to a location that Alex knew of further north in Beacon, NY.

Our second location was "closed" as well but we were all determined to not waste the day so we parked and walked around those pesky things in the way....barricades, I think they're called - haha.  Anyway, let's get to the good stuff.  We scoped things out quickly and found some areas that would work within these grounds and because it was closed, there were no people to hassle us about permits :-) 



The first set of images I like to do are beauty shots.  Stephanie has an instant connection with the camera and has eyes that will melt - you - down!  There are some great behind the scenes (BTS) shots that were captured to give you an idea of how much a pretty location doesn't matter nearly as much as good light.


The catamaran was sitting near where the beauty shots were done and we thought it would be fun for Stephanie to chill out in the arm of the big CAT.


For this shoot we chose a theme of bohemian as you can see more of in these images.  Alex and Lauren did a great job along with Stephanie putting this look together.  Stephanie also has a background in dance so that helped with getting into some interesting positions on the railing. 


The last few from the shoot featuring the bohemian look.  Thanks to all that participated (even Stephanie's mom) and helped make the shoot happen!  I look forward to working with you all again. 

MediaMath Corporate Shoot

Ah, the corporate shoot.  MediaMath has a pretty large room that we were able to use for this shoot that was scheduled on one particular day.  Each person had your standard, classic headshot (as shown below) and then we also did one "with a prop".  Those were fun.  Some were into it and some weren't.  They were funny nonetheless.

Below are a few of the 150+ images I took over multiple days and multiple locations. 


This now makes the third shoot done for MediaMath.  See more images from a recent event called The Future Series and a few months back the 5th Birthday Party.