All About The Attorneys Daily

Jeffrey Truitt Photography: What Attorneys Should Wear for a Professional Photo Shoot

Sep 15

In the legal profession, a professional image is not only essential for building trust and credibility but also for making a lasting impression on clients, colleagues, and the public. A well-executed professional photo can play a crucial role in showcasing your competence and approachability. Whether you're an attorney, a paralegal, or part of the supporting staff, dressing appropriately for a professional photo shoot is a must. In this article, we'll delve into the details of what to wear for a successful professional photo session for both men and women, with a special focus on the attire for attorneys and their supporting staff.

Why a Professional Business Portrait  Matters

Before we dive into the specifics of what to wear, let's briefly discuss why a professional photo is so important for attorneys and their teams:

  1. First Impressions: Your professional photo is often the first thing potential clients and colleagues see before meeting you in person. A polished appearance sets the tone for a positive first impression.

  2. Credibility: A well-dressed attorney appears more credible and trustworthy. It conveys the message that you take your profession seriously and pay attention to detail.

  3. Consistency: A consistent and professional appearance across all your marketing materials, including your website and social media profiles, reinforces your brand identity.

  4. Approachability: The right attire can make you appear approachable, which is especially important in fields like family law or mediation, where clients seek empathy and understanding.

Now that we understand the importance of a professional photo, let's break down the attire guidelines for attorneys, starting with men and then moving on to women. We'll also touch on what the supporting staff should consider.

Attire for Male Attorneys

Suits for men

For male attorneys, a well-fitted suit is the cornerstone of a professional wardrobe. Here are some key tips:

  • Color: Opt for classic colors like navy, charcoal gray, or dark black. These colors convey professionalism and timeless style.

  • Fit: Ensure your suit fits well, with a tailored look. Avoid oversized or ill-fitting suits, as they can make you appear unprofessional.

  • Shirt: A crisp, white dress shirt is a safe choice. Light blue or light gray shirts can also work well. Make sure it's freshly pressed and well-fitted.

  • Tie: Choose a conservative tie with subtle patterns or solid colors. Avoid flashy or overly bold patterns.

  • Shoes: Go for polished, black or brown leather dress shoes. Make sure they're clean and in good condition.

  • Accessories: Minimalistic accessories such as a leather belt and a classic watch can add a touch of sophistication.


  • Hair: Ensure your hair is neatly groomed. Consider a fresh haircut before the photo shoot if needed.

  • Facial Hair: If you have facial hair, keep it well-trimmed and neat.

  • Skin: Pay attention to your skin. A professional photo can highlight imperfections, so a clean and well-moisturized face is essential.

Additional Tips

  • Posture: Maintain good posture during the shoot. Confidence shows in how you carry yourself.

  • Smile: A warm, genuine smile can make you appear approachable and friendly. Practice your smile beforehand if necessary.

Now, let's move on to the attire guidelines for female attorneys.

Attire for Female Attorneys

Suits and Dresses

Female attorneys have various options for professional attire, including suits and dresses:

  • Suits: Choose a tailored pantsuit or skirt suit in classic colors like navy, black, or gray. Ensure a proper fit.

  • Dresses: Opt for a well-fitted dress that is knee-length or slightly below. Stick to solid colors or subtle patterns.

  • Blouses: Pair your suit or skirt with a simple, well-pressed blouse. Avoid low-cut tops or overly flashy designs.

  • Shoes: Closed-toe, low-heeled pumps or flats are ideal for a professional look. Ensure they are clean and well-maintained.

  • Accessories: Keep accessories minimal. A tasteful necklace or a pair of earrings can add a touch of elegance.


  • Hair: Style your hair neatly. If it's long, consider tying it back or using simple hair accessories to keep it in place.

  • Makeup: Keep makeup natural and subtle. Avoid heavy or dramatic makeup, as it may not photograph well.

  • Nails: Ensure your nails are clean and neatly manicured.

Additional Tips

  • Posture: Stand or sit with good posture to exude confidence and professionalism.

  • Expression: Maintain a pleasant, approachable expression during the shoot. Practice your expression in the mirror beforehand.

Now that we've covered attire guidelines for attorneys, let's discuss what the supporting staff should consider wearing for a professional photo.

Attire for Supporting Staff

Supporting staff play a crucial role in the law firm's operations, and their appearance should also reflect professionalism and competence. Here are some attire guidelines:

  • Men: Supporting staff, whether male or female, can follow the suit guidelines outlined earlier. However, they can choose slightly less formal options, such as a blazer with slacks and a dress shirt.

  • Women: Female supporting staff can opt for professional attire similar to female attorneys. A pantsuit, skirt suit, or knee-length dress with a blouse is appropriate.

  • Grooming: Supporting staff should also pay attention to grooming, including hair, makeup (if applicable), and overall presentation.

  • Accessories: Minimalistic accessories and jewelry are recommended. Avoid overly flashy or distracting items.

  • Footwear: Closed-toe shoes in neutral colors are suitable for both men and women in supporting roles.

In the realm of attorney photo shoots, choosing the right backdrop can significantly impact the message conveyed by the photograph. Two primary options are commonly considered: the environmental photo and the conventional studio background. Each has its distinct characteristics, advantages, and considerations. In this article, we will delve into the differences between these two settings to help attorneys make informed decisions about the backdrop that best suits their professional image.

The Environmental Photo

1. Context and Authenticity

  • Real-world Setting: The environmental photo takes place in a real-world context, such as a law firm office, a courtroom, or an outdoor location. It provides viewers with a glimpse into the attorney's natural habitat, creating a sense of authenticity.

  • Professional Setting: This setting can highlight an attorney's professionalism by showcasing them in their workplace. It suggests that the attorney is actively engaged in the practice of law.

2. Storytelling and Narrative

  • Tells a Story: Environmental photos often tell a story about the attorney's work environment and daily life. For instance, a photo taken in a bustling law firm suggests a busy and thriving practice.

  • Client-Focused: These photos can convey a message of client focus. For example, a photo of an attorney consulting with a client in their office can emphasize accessibility and client-centric services.

3. Aesthetic Appeal

  • Natural Lighting: Environmental photos often benefit from natural lighting, which can create a softer, more flattering look. This can result in a warm and inviting image.

  • Varied Compositions: Environmental photos allow for a variety of compositions, including close-ups, wide-angle shots, and candid moments. This flexibility can lead to visually engaging images.

4. Challenges

  • Background Clutter: Environmental photos may include distracting elements in the background, such as office equipment or unrelated people. These distractions can divert attention away from the attorney.

  • Lighting Control: While natural lighting can be an advantage, it can also be challenging to control. Weather conditions, time of day, and the location's lighting may require adjustments.

The Conventional Studio Background

1. Clean and Controlled Environment

  • Neutral and Consistent: Studio backgrounds are designed to be neutral and unobtrusive. They ensure the focus remains on the attorney without distractions from the environment.

  • Controlled Lighting: Studio setups allow for precise control of lighting conditions, resulting in a polished and professional appearance.

2. Versatility and Focus

  • Versatile Use: Studio backgrounds are versatile and can be customized to match various branding elements or marketing materials. This consistency reinforces the attorney's professional image.

  • Subject-Centric: With the environment stripped away, studio backgrounds direct all attention to the attorney. This approach is particularly effective for conveying a focused and serious demeanor.

3. Retouching and Post-Processing

  • Enhanced Retouching: Studio photos are often retouched to perfection, allowing for blemish removal and color correction. This can result in a flawless and polished appearance.

  • Branding Integration: Studio backgrounds can seamlessly incorporate branding elements, such as law firm logos or taglines, making them an excellent choice for cohesive branding efforts.

4. Potential Sterility

  • Lack of Authenticity: Some argue that studio photos, due to their controlled nature, may lack the authenticity and personal touch of environmental photos.

  • Limited Storytelling: Studio backgrounds do not naturally convey a narrative about the attorney's work environment or daily life, which can be a drawback if storytelling is a priority.

How to Choose the Right Background

The choice between an environmental photo and a studio background should be made strategically based on several factors:

1. Branding and Messaging

  • Branding Goals: Consider your law firm's branding goals. Do you want to emphasize a professional, controlled image (studio) or showcase authenticity and client engagement (environmental)?

  • Target Audience: Think about your target audience. What message would resonate best with them? A corporate law firm might lean towards studio photos, while a family law practice might prefer environmental shots.

2. Professional Image

  • Personal Style: Reflect on your personal style and the image you want to project. Some attorneys may feel more comfortable in their natural work environment, while others prefer the formality of a studio.

  • Consistency: Consider how your chosen background aligns with the image presented on your website, social media profiles, and marketing materials. Consistency is key to a strong brand identity.

3. Practical Considerations

  • Logistics: Evaluate the logistical aspects. Environmental photos may require additional planning, such as finding a suitable location and accommodating scheduling constraints.

  • Time and Budget: Factor in time and budget constraints. Studio photos can often be more time-efficient and cost-effective, as they eliminate the need for location scouting and travel.

4. Photographer's Expertise

  • Photographer's Portfolio: Review your photographer's portfolio and discuss your vision with them. Experienced photographers can guide you in choosing the backdrop that best aligns with your goals.

5. Client Feedback

  • Seek Input: If you have an established client base, consider seeking their input. They may have preferences regarding the type of photos that resonate with them.

In conclusion, the choice between an environmental photo and a conventional studio background for attorney photo shoots is not a one-size-fits-all decision. Both options offer unique advantages and considerations, and the best choice depends on your specific branding goals, target audience, personal style, and logistical considerations. Ultimately, whether you opt for an authentic glimpse into your daily legal life or a meticulously controlled studio setup, the key is to ensure that your chosen backdrop aligns with your professional image and effectively communicates your unique strengths as an attorney.


A professional photo shoot is a valuable opportunity to present yourself and your team in the best possible light. By adhering to these attire guidelines, attorneys and their supporting staff can project an image of competence, trustworthiness, and approachability. Remember that the key is to strike a balance between looking polished and maintaining a genuine, friendly demeanor during the shoot. With the right attire and confidence, you'll be well-prepared to make a lasting impression in your legal profession.

Jeffrey Truitt Photography