About Doctor Headshots

Everything you need to know about what to wear, how to pose, and what backgrounds to use for the perfect medical headshots.

What Are Doctor Headshots?

Physician’s headshots are a type of business portrait photo typically used for company websites, business cards, press releases, and LinkedIn profiles. For your average doctor, the most popular place for their headshot is on their practice’s website.

Doctor headshots focus on showcasing the subject’s professionalism, friendliness, and competence.

A great headshot is the perfect first step for building an awesome personal brand that helps doctors get hired faster, improve the practice’s sales numbers, or make sure potential client’s are comfortable with the practice’s professionalism.

doctor headshot example
doctor headshot photography example

Are Doctor Headshots Important?

Have you ever met someone that you instantly either liked, or disliked?

Perhaps you knew why you felt that way about them, or perhaps you didn’t, but most people are prone to generating “first impressions” of other people in just 1/8th of a single second. These first impressions can have dramatic impact on who they hire, buy from, and otherwise listen to.

These days, most first impressions start online.

Patients frequently research a potential medical practice before making an appointment or visiting.  

A great doctor headshot is critical for making a good first impression with these patients – and so can have a major impact on their willingness to try your practice.  

What Do I Wear for Doctor Headshots?

It depends on your personality, specialty and where the photos will be placed!

For some physicians, we’d recommend that you wear a standard suit-and-tie or business blazer.

For other types of physicians, scrubs are actually the norm.

Usually, the best rule-of-thumb is to dress however your peers are dressed. So, take a look around the web to see how peers are dressed before deciding on your attire.

If you’re still not sure, then feel free to ask us! We’re always happy to help.


doctor headshot example with suit
doctor headshot example with suit in studio

How Do I Pose for Doctor Headshots?

No need to go crazy on your poses for doctor headshots. In our sessions, we tend to focus on minimalist poses. We’ve seen other photographers force clients into some truly bizarre poses. But, we avoid this practice like the plague.

We are, after all, showcasing your professionalism — not our photography.

At the beginning of your session, you should warm up with simple and straightforward poses. Simply stand there and smile.

Later, we will work toward some arms-crossed headshots and perhaps a couple candids.

What Backdrops are Best for Doctor Headshots?

Generally speaking, most doctor headshots are either taken on a neutral studio backdrop (white, off-white, or light grey) or inside of the facility. 

In certain circumstances, like in dentistry or pediatrics, a light blue backdrop can be appropriate / fun. 

In the case of general practicioners or internists, it can also be fun to have a colored backdrop. But, in those cases, we’d recommend pairing a fun backdrop with more conservative attire. You don’t want to look too casual…

professional headshot backdrop options

HeadShots Inc Offers 9 Colored Studio Backdrops + Pure White

friendly female doctor headshot example

How Should I Prepare for Doctor Headshots?

There are three keys to preparing for your headshot ahead of time.

First, if possible, try to get some sleep, exercise, and sunshine in the weeks before your session. Our editing team airbrushes your selected photos before delivering them to you, but your preparation will help ensure that the photos look as natural as possible.

Second, make sure to briefly wear your desired clothing a couple days before your session. You want to make sure that your outfits still fits properly and doesn’t need dry cleaning.

Third, take a look at some prior photos of yourself and see if there are any that you particularly like. When you arrive at the studio, show those photos to your photographer, and that will help us find an angle that you find flattering.


What If I’m Not Photogenic or Hate Getting My Photo Taken?

We’ve got you covered! Most portrait photographers are unfortunately guilty of creating a cringe-y environment for their clients. They force you into awkward poses and don’t truly understand what clients are looking for from their session. Either that, or they rush you through the session.

There are also many photographers who refuse to specialize in one form of photography, so they’re frankly not very skilled at any specific type of session.

At HeadShots Inc, we strive to create a fun & stress-free environment for every client. At our studio, we play upbeat music and constantly get feedback from the client so that we can work towards an amazing headshot that you’ll be proud to show online. We only offer headshots (not even full-body portraits) and so we’ve mastered one service that we do exceptionally well. 


outdoor doctor headshot
female doctor headshot in white lab coat

How Much Do Doctor Headshots Cost?

Doctor headshots cost between $65 and $750 depending on geography, package, and provider. The upper end is likely a complete rip-off unless you’re looking for an extremely specific style. The bottom end is going to produce some truly terrible photos.

When considering pricing, remember to look at a) licensing (who owns the photos) and b) retouching fees.

In terms of licensing, photographers typically only give you ownership for photos that you “buy” from them. This fee is separate from your “session fee,” which just covers the time spent inside their studio. If you want to use your photos on a billboard, or in print, or somewhere else, you may have to pay additional fees.

For retouching, many photographers charge between $50 and $100 per photo. Calculate those fees into your total session cost.

For reference, HeadShots Inc sessions cost between $150 and $400, you get 100% rights to all original photos, and  you get one airbrushed photo included (additional are just $25 each.)

Looking for Doctor Headshot Pricing?

Find the perfect headshot package for your goals and budget below.

Individual Sessions

See pricing for individals and small groups of up to three people. Packages range from $150 to $400 based on session length and location.

Team Sessions

See pricing for groups of any size. Traditional headshot days and group medical practice discounts are available across the San Francisco Bay Area.

Ready to Book Your Session?

Book studio sessions using our online scheduling calendar or request an outdoor/group session below.

Or start a website chat to ask a question.