Need Some Pizzazz In Your Press Shots? Here's Our Best Tips!

09 May 2019

Press photos are one of the most important assets an artist has, they appear across all social media channels, press releases and articles. The shots must be thought-out and well executed, so we’ve created a list of tips that could be the difference between being ignored and being heard:

1. Have a variety of shots

This is a given for almost any photoshoot, and there’s no difference with artist press shots. You may have a vision of the ideal shot, but the likelihood that it comes out perfect is slim. Having a variety of shots from different angles, including close-ups and full body shots, will give you more options and may give you a surprising shot that you weren’t expecting.

2. Landscape and portrait orientation

Make sure you plan your best shots to be landscape, as it’s the common orientation used across almost all media channels, plus it needs to work as a square as well for your social media profile. A few portrait photos will come in handy as well, but if your main shot is portrait it will likely end up being cropped to landscape or square anyway.

3. Light it up

Again, another key point for any photoshoot but you’d be surprised how easily it can be forgotten. Make sure that the artist is the focal point of the shot and that the lighting works in their favor. If it’s a dark setting or background, provide adequate but clever lighting to put the artist (literally) in the limelight.

(Credit: She Is Aphrodite)

4. Make it interesting

With an abundance of artists and press shots flowing in and out of inboxes and on social media feeds around the world, something fresh and eye-catching is going to help immensely. It doesn’t need to be crazy across all aspects, although a fascinating background or setting, intriguing props or a striking colour palette can be enough to get people to click that mouse.

5. Convey your brand

Linking in with the tip above, you should plan what sort of brand and image you want to convey in your shots. Decide on what type and colour of clothing you’re going to wear, if you’re a bit lost look at similar artists for inspiration (but don’t swipe their style). Perhaps you can work in the artwork or colours of your upcoming release into the shot as well, it’s important to make your shots cohesive with your entire brand.

6. High resolution

Nobody wants pixelated shots or files that are a struggle to resize, make sure your pics are high quality and have a high resolution.

7. Update every album/single

It’s super important to update your press shots in the lead up to a new release. You may have a new look you want to show off, or a fresh image you need to convey, and you’ve probably been using the old shots for anywhere from six months to a year. It also allows you to change up your social media, creating hype with your fans in the lead up to your announcement.

(Credit: George Foster)

8. Use them across everything

Once you’ve got your final press shots, spread them across anywhere you can. All social media channels, streaming services, Soundcloud, Bandcamp and anywhere else you upload or share your music. This helps with brand recognition and it also helps people find you across platform.

9. Dropbox/Google Drive them

There’s no point in clogging up other people’s inboxes with gigabytes of press shots, make sure to pop them on Dropbox or Google Drive so you can simply provide a link and they can download them from there should they choose to use them. And it’s always a good idea to save a smaller file size version too.


Photographers work hard on their craft and rarely get the spotlight they deserve. Whether you have paid for their services or not, always credit your photographer!

(Credit: Matsu)

With these tips and some careful planning, there’s no doubt you can come out with some incredible press photos which will empower your brand and increase the reach your releases will achieve.