Ready to market yourself?
Headshots. They're arguably the single most important marketing tool for an actor. This is the first thing Casting Directors sees, and if they're not impressed, you can be sure that they'll move on to the next very quickly! So it's important to get it right. Getting your headshots right is so important...
You want to paint yourself in the best light (literally!) and you can be sure that poorly lit or unprofessional headshots will do just the opposite. So, how can you ensure you're putting your 'best face forward' - well, we have a few handy tips when it comes to actors headshots...
1. Don't cut corners. Yes, headshots might cost a little more than your iPhone and a good filter - but professional headshots are IMPERATIVE. Shop around, get a good price - but DON'T allow it to affect the quality of the headshot. A professional knows what they're doing and as proper lighting is one of the most CRUCIAL aspects of a great headshot, you need to choose someone who is experienced enough to get it right.
Casting Agent's look at these headshots everyday, so you can be sure that they'll be able to tell the difference between a professional photographer's work and that of your friend who's handy with an iPhone. So, make sure your headshot is one worth looking at! Even if you THINK the shot is clear, nice, simple, engaging... A white-wall selfie just want do. If you're wanting to take your acting seriously, INVEST in a good headshot photographer... And that's exactly what it is, an investment.
2. Try some different looks. It's important that every shot doesn't look the same. So, bring a few different outfits to mix up the look a little. If it's a studio shoot, your photographer should have both a black and white background to shoot against - so find something that works. For women with longer hair, some different hair styles can be really effective, changing between hair up and hair down really offers some different looks & can show casting directors your versatility. The same goes for different facial expressions - use your inner thoughts to display some different emotions so that you can offer a range of different characters within your headshots. And remember: It's not always about looking pretty (in fact, it's RARELY about looking pretty!) - so show your versatility with a variety of looks and expressions.
3. It's a headshot, not a glamour shot... Go easy on the makeup! Headshots need to reflect what you actually look like - you want it to be natural and show your features. Casting directors expect you to look just like your headshot, so heavily photo-shopped or airbrushed pictures don't reflect what you look like in person and certainly won't reflect what you look like on screen! Imperfections make us real, actors are real people and that's what casting directors want to see... REAL people! So whilst natural-looking makeup and some hairspray make the shot stand out.. Too much eyeliner can hinder your success!
4. Relax! A stiff body and a forced smile is not something you want in a headshot. Okay, some of us don't LOVE getting our photo taken... (And that's okay!) But think of this as an acting role... Pick a few different characters/emotions and use those when getting your shots done. You don't need to look perfect, you need to look real.
5. Acting is not just black and white, so your headshot shouldn't be either! 10 years ago, headshots were done predominantly in black and white, but thanks to a little thing called the modern age, we now have them in colour too - Yay! A selection of both black and white headshots is really important and if you have an agent, they will use the shots they prefer the most. So get in there and get as many shots as possible!
6. Keep them up to date! A headshot that's more than 12 months old is no good to you (or a casting director!) - so keeping your headshots current is crucial. Changed your hair colour? Then it's time for an update! Anything that drastically changes your look means you'll need to get a new headshot. Particularly for younger people (who are ever changing!) it's important to update your headshot every 6 months. If you're not changing drastically however, once a year is perfectly fine.
If you're after information on headshots or want to know who we recommend, contact us to chat about properly marketing yourself as an actor and let us help you get that perfect snap!