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Six Colorado photographers are offering free headshots Wednesday to help those looking for a job

Posted at 11:29 PM, Jul 21, 2020

A picture says a thousand words, and a good picture can help you land your next job.

On Wednesday, six local photographers will be offering headshots for free. Their work is part of a nationwide effort called 10,000 Headshots and comes at a critical time — more than 300,000 Coloradans are out of work, the vast majority lost their jobs within the last four months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"Having a headshot would mean the world to them as far as getting back to work, getting their confidence up," said Katie Warnke, one of the photographers donating their time for the 10,000 Headshots event. Warnke told Denver7 that many people were scraping by before coronavirus.

"Then when this hit," Warnke said, "they were in even worse shape."

The coronavirus hasn't spared Warnke, either. "My business was doing great in January, February, and even the first week of March," she said. "And then it completely tanked."

Warnke has adjusted. She's been able to collect unemployment, and she's re-designed her workspace to allow for social distancing. "I'm wearing a mask the whole time," she said. "I'm photographing clients from the front porch and through double doors."

The 10,000 Headshots event will follow all social distancing protocols, as well. It is happening at two Colorado locations: Park Meadows Mall and Southwest Plaza. Both locations are open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., although Warnke warned the Park Meadows event is full and the Southwest Plaza event is almost at capacity.

She's hopeful that there will be more opportunities like this in the future.

"A professional headshot projects professionalism," Warnke said. "I've heard somebody liken it to if you're posting a real estate listing and there's no photo of the house, you wonder what they're not showing you. What's wrong with the house? In comparison, if people don't include their professional headshot on LinkedIn, you might wonder why not. You don't get the whole picture, so to speak. Having a headshot on LinkedIn, on your website and in your email signature will help people feel like they know you a little bit better before you even talk. They can put a face with a name."