There’s the old saying you don’t know what you don’t know. Somewhat annoying but also true. This rule applies to all things in life including advertising and branding to the photos, fonts and colors you use in an ad or on your other materials.

I saw this ad (below) on a subway and had to look twice because I thought the woman only had one arm. It took me a few minutes staring at it to see that she did indeed have two arms. Then I thought what is this ad for and why doesn’t she have two arms? Why would you want to use an image that distracted me from your main focus, your brand, your product?

Foreshortened Arm

What do you see in this photo?
(Feel free to answer what catches your eye first in the comments or give your opinion on the ad)

When making photography choices always look for this kind of foreshortening.* You’ll want to make sure this never happens in your own portrait as well. If you go with an experienced photographer you shouldn’t have a problem because they should be looking for stuff like this. They are trained to make you look your best.

No one wants to see what they really look like. They want to see what they think they look like. The glowing image they have in their head. They want the best, most polished version of themselves. That comes with lighting, flattering poses and editing.

If you want to look your best and really shine in business make sure all the images you use including images of yourself reflect your brand. Be careful when picking out your next photo for an ad. If in doubt, ask someone for help. Ask their opinion.

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*Foreshortening: to portray or show (an object or view) as closer than it is or as having less depth or distance, as an effect of perspective or the angle of vision.