top of page

Why "Lead Role" Studio?

Self-portrait of the photographer, Christina Obligar

My name is Christina Obligar, and I’ve played many roles in my life, re-inventing myself countless times.


After graduating from UC Berkeley in 2003, my life took a number of twists and turns. Over the next two decades, a few of the roles I found myself playing were: Actor, commercial model, grad student, photographer, and lead technical instructor for a Bay Area tech company you definitely know (especially if you're familiar with the San Francisco skyline).

We all play different roles at different stages in life.  Whenever you change pursuits, reach for the next level, or reinvent yourself, it’s important to shape the way your community and decision-makers perceive you.

Christina Obligar

Christina Obligar

Portrait Photographer

I know first-hand how difficult it is to change careers, compete for a promotion, start a new venture, or simply step into the "new you". You need to access all the resources at your disposal to get them to see you in that new role. 

Regardless of whether we're talking about headshots, press photos, or web content—your photos should reflect the image you want to project and the role you want to play, even if it’s radically different from your last. It should stop people in their tracks and show them your vision for your future—who you’re set to become, rather than the roles you've played in the past.

That’s what Lead Role Studio is all about.

A Different Take on Headshots


Traditional headshot photographers rush you in and out of their studios, usually in 15-20 minutes. But that's not how I prefer to work. 


It takes a little time to get you comfortable in front of the camera, and even professional models need guidance to capture the right look.


Most Lead Role photography sessions last 2 hours, giving us plenty of time to:


  • Apply various backgrounds and lighting for different effects

  • Experiment with different looks, expressions, and poses

  • Regularly review our shots to help you learn to look your best, and to help me learn what you like

Of course, that’s only part of the equation. It’s what happens before you step in front of my professional-grade portrait lens that sets the stage for your debut.

What Really Makes the Difference


Before we begin, I’ll take the time to help you discover the look you’re trying to achieve. And don’t worry if you don’t know what you want—it’s my job to draw that out of you.


Next, I use my training and experience as a certified coach (another role I’ve played) to elicit an authentic vibe that gels with your unique talents, values, and point of view. This makes it possible for us to be as intentional as possible, with each technical and creative decision in alignment with a consistent vision.

I’ve worked with:


  • Professionals looking to express leadership prowess and competence to stakeholders

  • Creators who are more comfortable behind the scenes but want to convey something truthful

  • Artists putting themselves out there to connect and become influential in their communities

  • Thought leaders and coaches looking to project vision and trustworthiness

  • Performers aiming to capture that something special they bring to their work

  • Influencers who seek to inspire an audience with their personality and/or aspirational qualities

Whatever you’re hoping to express with your images, I’ve got a bunch of techniques to get you out of your head, into your body, and ready to play the role of a lifetime. 

Bringing the Studio to You

Here’s something else I do differently. I’ll bring everything we need for a professional shoot directly to your home or workplace (lighting, backdrops, etc.). Setup and takedown add about an hour to my process, but it’s 100% worth it. 

Why come to you? Like most of us, you’re probably more comfortable in your own home—changing in your own bedroom, and playing music from your own playlists. Naturally, the more comfortable you are, the better our results will be.

Nothing but Portraiture

I don’t do weddings. I don’t do events. 


I chose my medium-format digital camera because it’s ideal for the kind of slow, deliberate portraiture that I do. Thanks to its dynamic range, it provides a level of detail that other models lack, capturing skin tones flawlessly and delivering stunning results.


Simply put, I do one thing. And I do it right.

Ready to learn more? Let’s talk.


Book a free 15-minute consultation, and step into the role you were meant to play.

bottom of page