Photographer scraps studio for happy hour shots

Jennifer Buhl is taking her photography to offices and post-work drinks. Photo by Katherine Blunt.

Jennifer Buhl is taking her photography to offices and post-work drinks. Photo by Katherine Blunt.

A former paparazzo is turning her lens toward Denver-area professionals in want of fresh headshots – and cold beer.

In an era where a LinkedIn photo is worth 1,000 words, photographer Jennifer Buhl launched Happy Hour Headshot last week to help businesspeople put their best faces forward on company sites and social media.

She’ll meet customers at their workplace or a pub, take some shots and let them pick their favorites over drinks.

“Everyone likes a beer, and I’ve had so many clients and friends ask me to give them 10 minutes for a headshot,” Buhl said. “You don’t want to have a big production and schedule something major, but you want a good shot, and it’s all too important to get someone good who knows what they’re doing.”

At a co-working space in Boulder last week, Buhl tested the idea by snapping headshots for nine people during a four-hour window. About a dozen more people wanted to sign up, she said, giving her hope that the idea will generate the same enthusiasm throughout the Denver metro area.

When the business gets off the ground, Buhl anticipates scheduling a few hours’ worth of back-to-back shoots at bars in the metro area. The shoots will last about 15 minutes each, plus some additional time for choosing photos over drinks. She’s willing to meet groups at their work places.

One headshot costs $85, and the price per photo decreases for larger orders.

Buhl also offers other photography services for small businesses, including product and workplace photos. She launched that business, called Buhl Business Photography, alongside Happy Hour Headshot.

“There are lots of high-end corporate photographers who might shoot for large businesses, but there are not many people in the space for entrepreneurs and medium-size businesses,” Buhl said. “All (these businesses) don’t have the necessary product photography, but they still, in this day of digital media, need to have a good-looking website.”

Buhl also has a photography business for families and babies, which she started in 2011 after moving to Boulder from Los Angeles. There, she shot photos of the rich and famous – whether they wanted her to or not.

“As a paparazzi, I learned to shoot really fast, which allows me to get a variety of expressions,” she said.
During her days in L.A., Buhl shot up-and-coming stars like Miley Cyrus and Zac Efron, as well as established A-listers like Jennifer Aniston. As she caught them crossing the street, walking the beach and popping in and out of restaurants, she developed a style that emphasizes movement and urban scenes, she said.

“My style is very much from my paparazzi days,” she said. “When you get people to walk and move, it’s much more of a real, normal feel, and that comes across in the photo.”

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