I volunteered to help out at Masterminds Tampa Bay’s booth at the Synapse Summit 2023 conference yesterday, where Masterminds team moderator Vadim Davydov worked his photographic magic creating professional headshots for a long line of VIPs. It was my job to help get them registered and lined up for their sessions.
Masterminds Tampa Bay is “The Other Bay Area’s” Mastermind group, a peer mentoring group aimed at entrepreneurs and techies looking for connections, support, advice, assistance, resources, and so on. Many metro areas have Mastermind groups, whose name comes from The Law of Success by Napoleon Hill, a book that’s nearly 100 years old, where he defined the Mastermind Principle as:
“The coordination of knowledge and effort between two or more people who work towards a definite purpose in a spirit of harmony…
No two minds ever come together without thereby creating a third, invisible intangible force, which may be likened to a third mind.”
If you’re interested in the rest of Napoleon Hill’s definition of the Mastermind Principle, it’s summarized pretty well in this article. If you want to hear it in Hill’s own voice, watch this video:
Vadim’s lighting setup is a key part of why his headshots look so good…
…but more important are the instructions he gives you as you pose:
- “Follow my finger!”
- “Close your mouth!”
- “More sexy! Okay, too much sexy! Less sexy!”
- “Stretch your neck! Think turtle! Turtle, turtle, turtle, turtle!”
- “Squeeze your butt cheeks! Shake your booty!”
The instructions may sound nonsensical and hilarious, and he gets you into poses that you’d never do naturally, but they work. I kept telling people to just do what he says and to trust the process. And he kept cranking out gorgeous result after gorgeous result.
At 4:27 p.m. after nearly 8 hours of shooting, the last person in line had come and gone. That’s when I asked Vadim “Can you do one more — namely, me?”
He smiled and obliged. The official photo isn’t done yet, but every photo he took was displayed on a couple of screens in the booth. I took a couple of shots of these screens, and even these previews are great:
I can’t wait for the official shot! In the meantime, these are my new profile pics.
Thanks, Vadim, and thanks, Tampa Bay Masterminds for taking me on as a booth volunteer!
And once again: if you need to look great in a headshot, you want Vadim Davydov!