Richard's Photography

Personal Communication…Not So Personal Anymore

How digital communication creates a personal disconnect in our lives, and how one small addition to your media messages can change that.


San Antonio, TX -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/14/2018 --Technology is everywhere, mostly for the better, but sometimes for worse. Technology has shaped almost every aspect of our lives, from how we read our books, to how we listen to our favorite artists to how we communicate with friends, family and colleagues.

For the most part, technology has revolutionized our daily routines, helping us to accomplish more, and faster…but at what cost?

Being "connected" 24/7365 comes at a price. Studies have shown that technology is impacting our sleep habits, causing anxiety, stress, and even depression.

But worst of all, we are beginning to lose touch with people. Yes, we are communicating more frequently and more often, but emails, text and chat messages lose something in translation. They lose context, inflection and personality that can't be replicated with emojis.

We're quickly losing the ability to form meaningful relationships. But all is not lost. There are ways to help bridge the gap between email, text, and chat without having to sacrifice the allure and convenience of technology.

One Texas photographer is taking aim at bridging this gap through a simple but largely overlooked aspect of digital communication; putting a face with the name.

Richard's Photography in Texas ( specializes in helping his customers (mostly business professionals) connect with their target audience by offering headshots that can be used on resume's, in portfolios, on personal or business websites, and in chat/email communications.

How does this make a difference? Because you never get a chance to make a second first impression, and that first impression is typically no longer made in person, its made when an individual, prospective client, business or recruiter happens upon your social profile (such as on LinkedIN).

Research has shown that within 40 milliseconds (less than one half of 1/10th of a second) is all it takes for an individual to draw conclusions about you from your photo. Utilizing professional headshot services is an increasingly sought after option to build up personal branding, establish the initial elements of trust, and to establish a personal connection with their audience.

Here are a few tips backed by science that can be utilized in your headshots to make the best first impression.

When it comes to approach-ability, researchers at the the Department of Psychology at University of York analyzed 1,000 images of faces in order to find the specific facial tics and features that help make a good first impression.

They came up with 65 different features that could affect one's perceptions, things like "nose curve" and "cheekbone position" and "head area."

Your photographer will be familiar with these, but here is a quick run-down of the basics that Richard's Photography ( suggests:

Don't block your eyes. Sunglasses drop likability score, and hair, glare, and shadows drop competence and influence.

Define your jawline. A shadow line that outlines the jaw all the way around helps with likability, competence, and influence.

Show your teeth when you smile. A closed mouth smile has a small increase likability. A laughing smile increases likability even more, but you lose ground in competence and influence.

Try formal dress. Dark-colored suits and light-colored button-downs (with ties, for men) had the greatest effect on competency and influence out of all other factors.

Head and shoulders (or head to waist). Close-ups on just headshots brought scores down, as did full body shots.

Try a squinch. A squinch is a slight squint. The idea behind it is that wide eyes look fearful, vulnerable, and uncertain. Slightly squinted eyes may come across as comfortable and confident.

And here are a few things that Richard's Photography suggests avoiding:

- Hats
- Sunglasses
- Shine (hair or face)
- Overtly sexual pose or gaze
- Overly excited smile

There's no arguing that technology has shaped the landscape of communication in ways we couldn't have imagined. But despite its benefits, advancements in communications have often led to a lack of connection and a dehumanizing effect.

Taking small steps like including professional headshot images in your emails and texts, and on your websites and portfolios help bridge that gap and establish a deeper more meaningful connection with the person on the other end.