Welcome to the Melanie Foster Blog

celebrating OU seniors and Bartlesville and Tulsa families through photography.

Hey, y’all! 

I’m Melanie, the girl behind the lens at Melanie Foster Photography. Whether you’re getting ready for your upcoming OU senior or your Bartlesville or Tulsa family photography experience, I hope you’ll stay a while, pick up a few tips, and be inspired for your own MFP photo session! 

Your Go-To Guide for Headshots | Melanie Foster Photography


There is a lot of freedom and creativity in a headshot session, and I want to make sure you are taken care of and feel confident from start to finish! I’m excited to share a go-to guide for headshots so that you have all the information you need as you prepare.

(My own personal headshots are featured in this post! Special thanks to Carsyn Abrams for shooting, Ivy Lane for hosting us, and Flaunt for my amazing makeup!)

go-to guide for headshots

The Process!

  • If you’ve officially booked your headshots with MFP, congratulations! This is when the fun officially begins! Next steps are the planning – choosing a location, outfit selections, and scheduling any additional appointments in preparation for your shoot.
  • I’ll reach out 2-3 days prior to your shoot to confirm final details – meeting location, timing, what to bring, etc.
  • When you arrive, I’ll walk you through my posing process and how we will spend our time together! Then we’ll get to shooting! I’ll guide and direct you throughout.
  • After the session, you can expect to receive an email with your online gallery link in about 2 weeks! From here, you can download your images and order prints within the gallery.



  • Depending on the atmosphere you’re looking for and your personal preference and taste, we have a couple options for locations:
    • Rural – open fields, farmland, tall grass.
    • Urban – white walls, colorful murals, downtown views, trendy shopping areas.
    • Collegiate – if we’re near a college campus, I’d LOVE to take advantage of the variety, pretty architecture, and unique landscaping.
    • Natural light studio – clean and crisp, consistent, professional (may include additional fee for rental)


Outfit selection and hair/makeup

  • I generally recommend avoiding small prints such as plaid or polka dots, orange/rust, black, and neon/super bright colors. Instead, stick with softer colors, jewel tones, or neutrals. Some of the most flattering colors are are blush, gray, light blues and greens, and creams. These colors will result in a more light and airy look to your images!
  • We all have our own insecurities and we are usually a lot harder on ourselves than we would like to be! If you have an area of your body that you are uncomfortable with (arms, hips, etc.), don’t hesitate to let me know! That way, I can be on the lookout for angles you might not love and you can focus on feeling great! The last thing I want is for you to be worried about the fit of your clothes during our shoot, so be sure to try everything on beforehand! Keeping this in mind, I encourage you to wear something that makes you feel confident and doesn’t draw unwanted attention to these areas. Ex: if you aren’t crazy about your arms, pick something with flowy sleeves as opposed to short sleeves or tanks!
  • Getting professional hair and makeup done for your session is a fun way to not only celebrate and pamper yourself, but it takes all the pressure and stress off of having to get ready! Not to mention, it’s an opportunity for all of your favorite features to be highlighted! Hair and makeup for photography is more specialized than an every day look, and professional artists are trained to help you look your absolute best!
    • TIP: If you’re worried about looking tired or just want a little something special for your portraits, getting false lashes will make the most impact in your portraits! Another thing to note – skip the spray tan! Orange tones tend to pick up easily in photographs.


Personalize with props or people you love!

  • Select props that incorporate your profession or personal interests to add variety, personality, and options for a little something fun!
    • Skinnypop Popcorn is my go-to snack on a daily basis. I buy bags in bulk! I’ve brought it to shoots, not only to snack on in between outfit changes, but also to use as a prop and fun little extra something for a few images to share my love for the brand.
  • If you have friends or family members joining you for a few images, be sure to review the LIFESTYLE GUIDE, too!


Final Pre-Shoot Checklist

    • Set an intention or purpose for your images. Are you using these just for fun on Instagram? Planning to create a consistent and professional brand across the internet? Sharing them throughout your industry for speaking engagements, business cards, etc.? Thinking through these options and uses will help in direction for location, style, and props.
    • Select and try on your outfits with jewelry and shoes. Optional – have someone take a few test shots outside on your iPhone to get a sense of how the outfits will photograph!
    • Schedule your hair and makeup appointment for the day of your shoot.
    • Don’t neglect the nails! Paint your nails a light, neutral color the day before, or treat yourself to a manicure.
    • Pack a bag with your clothes, extra lipstick, hairspray, a brush, and props.
    • Arrive ready to be taken care of, celebrated, and down to have fun!


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