How important is color in a headshot? Very important. Think about the way an image looks in black and white and in color. Is there a difference? Does one seem more vibrant and full of life? Usually.
Color adds life and vibrancy to an image. The more there is, the more wild the image becomes. So by turning the saturation of a headshot up, you are also turning up the excitement of the headshot. Turning the color down (decreasing saturation) leads to less excitement.
You don't want to overdo the excitement level though. More professional shots use less color, and more wild and happy shots use more color. It depends what kind of character you are going for.
Another important thing to remember is that the tint of an image also tells us a fair deal about it. For example, a headshot with lots if blue tones is likely going to feel cold and distant. Whereas a headshot with red and yellow and orange tones will feel warm and friendly.
Look at the colors in your headshot and think about what a difference it would make if you played with the colors more. If you are an actor, be sure to get a headshot photographer who knows about the uses of color. They can make a huge difference in the quality of your headshot.
Also, when the photographer sends you the proofs of the images, look at the color before you approve them, and if you think it would look better a bit more colorful or with a slight tint, don't be afraid to ask for the adjustment.
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