The Dag Dance

Playful FUN creates Powerful Corporate Headshots

The difference between regular headshots/branding photographs, and Future You identity photographs that we take in the studio, all comes down to identity psychology, personality, and especially emotion and expression. As soon as the camera is lifted up, I notice that peoples’ anxiety increases and their ability to just relax decreases. It is a totally normal reaction. I experience this myself when getting my own photographs taken. Your awareness and hypervigilance increases, you become super aware of your surroundings and the voice in your head gets very loud. Body language becomes quite stiff. Robot hands with a mind of their own. Tense shoulders and jawlines. “Deer in the headlights” facial expression. The mind takes over and the body doesn’t know what to do. What you end up with are photos that you are ‘somewhat’ happy with. A lot of “that’ll do for now”. You end up with photographs of yourself that you grow out of super fast. You don’t share the photos very often because you are uninspired or at worst embarrassed to share.

This situation saddens me because I believe that everyone deserves to feel and BE fully self-expressed, to be truly seen and represented authentically in their photographs. I believe that people shouldn’t be made to feel like they need to hide, diminish, play small or settle for average. I’ve lived and breathed visibility and invisibility throughout my whole life. Visibility is especially important in photographs. I take my role as Future You Storyteller & Brand Advisor very seriously, as I believe that photographs can heal and equally harm (if not done properly) self-esteem and our own self-image. Awesome photographs can propel us, average and luke warm photographs can hold us back.

The Secret Sauce

The secret sauce of what I do in the studio comes down to being really ‘serious’ about having heaps of FUN in front of the camera. In the studio we are super light-hearted while staying laser-focused on what is best for you.

What is important for you in expression, authenticity and communicating your true value?

While prioritising fun we are consistently coming back to emotion and embodying your whole truth in front of the camera. Fun and playfulness is the only way to achieve this while also simultaneously transforming the confidence of the person being photographed.

Emotion must be felt by you as you are the muse.
As your photographer, I must also feel the emotion WITH you.
And the person looking at the photograph must also be able to feel the emotion.

Emotions transform

Emotions aren’t accessed by your thoughts.
You can’t just talk yourself into happiness or joy.
Go on! Give it a try!
Emotions come from your subconscious mind.

When you actually feel an emotion, like happiness or joy, it has a physical effect on our bodies. You can’t pretend. As a result, the expression you show in a photograph is more visceral and read by others as truly coming from the depths of your soul.

“Emotions flow through our body, thoughts flow through our mind; the flow of daily life, moving freely, is an experience that creates pleasure.”

– John Pierrakos

Dagginess unlocks Personal Power

Emotions flow through your body. That is why we use body movement, dance and playfulness to amplify it. Literally getting OUT of your head, mind chatter, and getting into the flow. We use a highly specialised movement in the studio, grounded in lots of serious science, called the ‘dag dance’. It’s very scientific you see. 🙂 It requires both you and me to put down the camera and props, and ‘dag dance’ to the music. As you might have gathered already, we have fun during a photographic experience. We keep things light. We follow your personal energy state and adapt accordingly. The ‘dag dance’ ultimately unlocks your emotions, gets you to the heart of you really quickly, and changes the way that you talk to yourself while in front of a camera. The ‘dag dance’ is vital to creating powerful Corporate and Branding photographs!

If you would like to practice this ‘dag dance’, I would highly recommend a safe private space to conduct such a dance lol

Steps to a powerful Dag Dance in the photography studio:

  • Find music that has a good upbeat to it. Something that uplifts you. Some suggestions could be “Happy” by Pharrell Williams or “Run the World” by Beyonce or “Footloose” by Kenny Loggins.
  • Move arms and legs in uncoordinated ways to create the biggest flurry possible.
  • Spontaneously breaking out into “Walk like an Egyptian” dance moves or strutting like Mick Jagger will give you more opportunities to laugh and let loose!
  • Dag dancing effects are heightened when done in the presence of another dag dancer.
  • Don’t take yourself too seriously.

From one fellow dag dancer to another, let your inner dag be free, and connect to your power as a leader and a personal brand!

>> I’d love to hear your thoughts on your own version of the dag dance.

I DARE you to get daggy and get relaxed at your next photo shoot!

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About Louise

A Brand Identity Photographer, Confidence + Mindset Coach & Brand Strategist.

Once a Psychologist in a former life, I now empower emerging & established leaders, multi-hypheners, trailblazers, and kick-ass over-achievers to accelerate their personal brand positioning & dial-up their visibility.

I blend photographic storytelling with identity psychology & archetypes.

Headshots | Personal Brand Photography | Coaching | Team Building | Staff Photos | Workshops

Based in Brisbane, servicing Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth & International clients.

Contact Louise

Phone: 0402 283 219