ERAS Residency Photos

You Deserve to Stand Out

The residency headshot you submit via ERAS (Electronic Residency Application Service) is far more important than you may imagine.

Faculty members will look at your headshot and, based on this one image, make snap judgments about you, deciding how serious you seem, how likable you are, how you will fit into their program.

The Stakes are Very High

This is not a place to over-economize. Do not rely on a selfie or "friendie" photo. That may work (badly) for Facebook or LinkedIn, but the stakes are much higher here. You need to represent yourself at the highest level, showing how you look "on your best day," in excellent lighting, with an expression that shows confidence, competence, and approachability.

A few things to consider:
  1. If you use an unprofessional photo, or go "cheap," that tells faculty members reviewing your application that you undervalue yourself and/or are not someone who pays attention to detail. They will think: "Perhaps he didn't get himself organized to do this professionally." Or, "She didn't think it matters, but it does. Certainly it did to everyone else in her class."
  2. We humans are highly visual creatures (an estimated 80% of our brains deal with visual processing). So it is natural that visual criteria would be the first thing faculty reviewers focus on, and that they will make their first cut of applications simply based on whether a photo submitted passes certain criteria.
  3. Any discerning person required to sift through a large cadre of similarly qualified individuals is going to look for easy ways to knock out candidates. Don't give them a reason to knock you out just because you didn't take the time to get a great headshot done.
  4. You can bet that the most qualified, competitive, organized candidates are going to submit killer headshots. So should you.

What We Do

We are headshot and portrait experts. We will lead you through a stress-free, relaxing session in our studio to capture the best possible images of you, so that you can show off your best, most confident, and approachable self.




What You Get

As per ERAS recommended guidelines, the images will be shot:

  • on a plain, light grey background;
  • showing your full face and shoulders with you centered in the middle of the image.

Some individuals may want to choose a more "conservative" look with a darker background, and that is your choice. However, we recommend lighter backgrounds to help you stand out at the smaller size of the images in the application.

We will deliver to you a crisp, high-resolution version of your image that you could use to print a billboard if you so desired, but for ERAS all you need is a properly cropped and down-sized 2.5 x 3.5 inch image at 150 dpi, at less than 100k in size, so we will also send you a submission image at those parameters so that you can easily upload your headshot without having to resize it yourself.

All images are lightly retouched to smooth over temporary distractions like blemishes and fly-away hairs, to make your image really pop off the page.

The normal turnaround time from completion of your session to delivery of images is 2-3 days.

What Should You Wear?

A professional outfit. For both men and women, we strongly recommend a charcoal- or navy-colored jacket. Men should wear a tie. Stick to natural, darker, solid, rich colors. The tie can have a pattern.

Do NOT wear:

  • a white coat;
  • a colorful blouse under a dark coat;
  • an all-white. shirt – the human eye is attracted to the brightest part of an image, and that will attract eyeballs away from your face;
  • jewelry (small ear studs are ok);
  • low-cut, frilly, unusual, distracting blouses or shirts.

Apparently, studies have shown that applicants with glasses have a statistically higher chance of receiving interview requests. But only wear glasses if you actually wear them in real life, and they should have an anti-glare coating. If they have a blue light coating, they can show a nerdy blue tint. Sometimes we can photoshop that out, but best to start with non-blue-light specs if we can.

If you are uncertain what to wear, bring a few outfit changes. We have a private changing area, so we can easily try out different looks and see what works best for you.

If you want to use your headshot session time to also capture some less formal images of yourself (no coat, colored background, frilly blouse, jewelry...), shooting such additional options is included in your session fee. The only additional charge would be for any images you chose to have retouched and delivered.