WYOMING, Mich. — With hundreds of thousands of people in Michigan unemployed due to the coronavirus pandemic, a local photographer wants to help those looking for jobs.
Cameron Southwood, owner of Southwood Studio in Wyoming, says the people affected by COVID-19’s economic impact need a (head)shot.
Southwood is joining more than 200 other photographers July 22 in a nationwide initiative called “10,000 Headshots.”
“The goal is to shoot over 10,000 headshots in one day, and all for free,” said Southwood. “That’s a way for us to help out people who have lost their jobs during the pandemic.”
Headshot Booker, a headshot booking agency, began planning the effort two months ago. They’re encouraging photographers to shoot 50 10-minute sessions on the big day. Recipients also go home with information like how to create a resume or conduct an interview.
Southwood is one of two photographers representing Michigan.
“It’s just being able to help because I’m in a position to do so, so just knowing that I’m helping someone get back out there, is what I’m going for,” said Southwood.
According to Southwood, profession headshots start around $250, which is a hefty price to pay for the 14.8 percent of Michiganders currently unemployed, many due to COVID-19.
“Things have been tough and just this little bit might be a little bit of hope and little bit of boost to get out and get back out there in the job market,” said Southwood.
A 2017 analysis from LinkedIn found a profile photo resulted in up to 21x more views and 9x more connection requests.
“If you’re unemployed and need something, why not?” asked Southwood. “Take advantage of it.”
Southwood suggests people dress simple, wearing solid colors with minimal jewelry and makeup.
“All combined, I think it’s the best effort to give someone that boost they need and the confidence they need to get that new position,” said Southwood.
He says in a world where a picture is worth a thousand words, these headshots would only mean a few.
“It’s a first impression and to me more than anything it shows that you’re dedicated and put in that extra time and effort,” said Southwood.
Sessions will be from 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. at Rivertown Mall on July 22.
To sign up, click here.