When you shoot a portrait, you should strive for maximum impact. Emotion, lighting and movement all add impact to a photo, but the way you frame the photo also makes a huge difference. the closer you get to your subject, the more intimate and impressive the photo will be.
Get rid of their heads!
Considering that most headshots are viewed on very small screens and business cards, the more impact the better. Cutting off the tops of the heads gives more room in the frame for the eyes, which are the most important thing in any portrait. People often ask me if they can have a full head copy of their photo, but I always advise against them, and so should you.
Composition-wise, the eyes should be in the most interesting part of the frame, and a good place for them is about a third of the way up the top of the frame. If you count the top of the head, you’ll also need to add more belly to get the eyes a third of the way down. Two things no one has ever said in real life: “I wish people could see more of my crown” and “I wish people could see more of my belly.”
Trust me, it’s better to crop the top of the head and get more impact in your portraits. Do you have to do this with all photos? No, of course not… only do it in the right way 😉