Photographers from across the United States joined together on July 22 to participate in the '10,000 Headshots' initiative, a group effort that involved offering free professional headshots to unemployed workers with the goal of helping them secure new jobs. The initiative was coordinated by Headshot Booker, which explains on its website that these sessions were offered to anyone who was unemployed as of July 22 when the sessions took place.

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The initiative was a success, according to Headshot Booker. Participants interested in getting headshots were required to pre-register for a 10-minute session and each location was limited to 50 total appointments. More than 200 photographers participated across 50 states and used Brookfield Properties retail locations with pop-ups as their studios.

The agency notes that every location used proper social distancing and safety measures to keep everyone safe, including contactless delivery of images and having photographers wear masks.

Headshots are an important aspect of finding work, the agency points out. Career-centric social platform LinkedIn claims that profiles featuring professional headshots are nine times as likely as other accounts to receive connection requests. Paying for a headshot while unemployed is particularly difficult, however, making it harder for those in need of a job to find one.

Professional photographer and Headshot Booker co-founder Peter Hurley explained:

Unfortunately, many job seekers underestimate the value of a professional headshot, instead opting for a snapshot taken by a friend or even worse a selfie. The headshot has become the cornerstone of one’s digital brand identity and we want to empower people as they go through the process of procuring a new job and getting back into the workforce.

The initiative was launched in partnership with Canon, MySpotPhotos and several other companies. Ultimately, every registered participant left the pop-up studios with a professional headshot for their resumes. Headshot Booker says this was the 'largest, single-day photo initiative' of its kind, one that comes amid widespread unemployment caused by the pandemic.