People are sometimes concerned about the background. But it doesn’t really matter. Unless it detracts from your face. You see, we’re really looking at your eyes. That’s the most important part of the photo. So I could do your portrait before a white wall (like the one above). What counts is your presence. Are you present in the moment?
Location can add to the photo. It can help tell a story. It can provide texture, and color and create interesting pockets of negative space that produces an overall effect that is almost painterly. And for some portraits that’s what you want. For others it’s not necessary. It really comes down to what you wish to convey.
Your face is enough. That gleam in your eye. So much is communicated in a simple glance. A strong, memorable portrait is the result of two people setting an intention to create a strong, memorable portrait. It’s just you looking at me. I am the doppleganger for the world. The photographer stands in for the consumer of the image, so he or she has to embody everyone. That’s a tall order when you think of it that way.
The most important quality in a photographer is empathy. So when choosing a photographer consider how they make you feel. Do you feel seen? Understood? Recognized for who you are and what you do? If the answer is yes, then the people looking at your photographs will feel that too.