THE IMPORTANCE OF HAVING A GREAT ACTOR HEADSHOT
First impressions mean more than anything else you do when looking for work as an actor or trying to find the right agency to represent you. Casting directors are no exceptions; these professionals go through hundreds of applicants a day, and the first impression is all they have to go on most of the time. Some people say that casting directors have made up their mind about an applicant in the first five seconds of an audition, but this is incorrect. Casting directors have made up their mind about most applicants well before giving them an audition, just from looking at their headshot.
YOUR HEADSHOT IS YOUR FIRST IMPRESSION
In acting, an impressive resume is a distant second compared to an impressive headshot. It’s basic human psychology: people respond much more strongly to visual stimuli than to words on a page. For an actor, your headshot is your first and often only impression on potential employers. Unprofessional, blurry headshots with poor lighting mean you will never see an audition.
WHAT IS AN ACTOR HEADSHOT?
You may have heard a headshot referred to as a mug shot. This is a plain 8X10 photo of a person’s face. The purpose of a headshot is to show what a person’s face looks like. It usually consists only of the head (and possibly the shoulders). If the shoulders are included, the photo is termed a 3/4 headshot.
In the United Kingdom, entertainers and actors usually have need of both close up face shots and 3/4 headshots. The traditional headshot is done in black and white. This is still the norm in the UK. In the US, colour headshots are more acceptable but is also becoming very popular in the UK. Before having your headshot taken, be sure to let the photographer know where you plan to work.
A really good headshot is honest and transparent. It shows the person as-is. It must reflect the age, style and look of the person depicted. Headshots should be kept up to date, so if you colour or cut your hair or make some other change, you should have new professional headshots taken.
Be sure your personality shines through in your headshots. Choosing the right photographer to work with will help you get the most effective headshots. A truly professional headshot focuses on the subject of the photo and not the subjects clothing or other adornment. Before a headshot, select the clothes you will wear. Simple tops in plain colours such as white, black and grey are good. Choose two different types of neckline, such as V-necked and rounded collars. A V- necked top will help make your neck look longer. A rounded neck top has the opposite effect. Be sure the clothing you select is plain. You don’t want to have to compete with the loud print of your shirt for attention.
THERE ARE A FEW DIFFERENT KINDS OF HEADSHOTS FOR DIFFERENT JOBS
- A commercial headshot should show you as friendly and warm. Be sure to smile!
- A theatrical headshot is a serious shot. You should not smile for this.
- A studio headshot is one that is shot indoors, at the studio under studio lights.
- A natural headshot is taken outdoors in a natural setting using natural light.
- A black and white headshot is the sort that models and actors in the UK use when seeking employment.
- A modelling headshot is used when creating a modelling portfolio. They are used for demonstrating the models’ skin completion for modelling assignments. This type of headshot is taken in colour.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
The cost of actors’ headshots varies. Some are £50. Still others are as much as £300. The skill and expertise of the photographer usually determines this. Remember that the cost of your headshots should not be your first or main consideration. You should be sure of getting proper value for your money. You don’t want to pay too much for anything, and you certainly don’t want to lose any money on poor quality photos. Don’t go for DIY headshots. If you are interested in getting work as an actor, entertainer or model, invest in good, professional quality headshots. Doing it yourself could derail your career.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SUBMITTING YOUR HEADSHOTS, CASTING AGENCIES AND SECURING AUDITIONS
If you have a great headshot, you have a lot better chance of getting a break to kick-start your career. Otherwise, you could end up sitting about waiting until you are old and grey to get your break. If you want a good opportunity (and remember they are rare) you should always hire a pro to take your headshots. An expert photographer has the necessary training to take effective headshots. A good photographer has a keen eye and the ability to identify your good features and bring them to the forefront in your photos.
If you want to be successful, you need a great headshot. It should be representative of you and your character, and it should intrigue the viewer. It should capture the attention of the one looking at it and stir interest in you and your personality. A good headshot is one that causes them to look twice. Remember that these results are only available with a professional photographer.
Be sure to talk with your photographer about creating multiple looks. A casting agent always wants to see how versatile you can be. You will probably find that a truly professional headshot photographer will take a variety of images automatically and give you good suggestions on how to create the best looks. They have had many years of handling a variety of models, so they know just what it takes to bring out the potential in a photo subject.
Entertainers of all kinds, whether musicians, dancers, singers or actors need good photographs that clearly show star quality and talent. An actor’s headshot is given to casting agents. These people are known for having meticulous taste. For this reason, the headshot has to be clear and outstanding. Otherwise, it is likely to be ignored. The world is tough, and it’s hard to get a break in show business. A good headshot can open a lot of doors.
Clearly, if you have a business you want people to visit your website and spend their hard earned dollars. Using commercial photography to present and promote your business or firm is a smart idea. Good, clear photos that show your business at its best can be reproduced on business cards, fliers, billboards and what have you. Having great photos on hand helps you get good media coverage and the promotion that comes with it. You might also want to have some photos of yourself and/or your staff and co-workers. These can be used to introduce your business to others and show how friendly, skilled, smart and professional you all are. Don’t be shy about this. There is nothing narcissistic about blowing your own horn when you are trying to promote your business. It is the way to success.
MAKE QUALITY YOUR PRIORITY WHEN GETTING HEADSHOTS
WHEN SEEKING OUT A GOOD HEADSHOTS PHOTOGRAPHER, LOOK FOR APPLICANTS WHO HAVE THE FOLLOWING:
- A professional website
- Verifiable client testimonials
- A professional portfolio
- Good client list
Examine the photographer’s work carefully to be sure his or her vision is similar with your own. Be sure to determine whether or not the photographer is a one shot wonder. If all of his or her photos look alike, you will want to take your business elsewhere. After all, you want your individuality to stand out in your headshots.
HOW TO FIND A ACTOR HEADSHOTS PHOTOGRAPHER
If you are looking for a good actor headshots photographer, check listings in your local phone book and newspapers. You may find excellent listings for local photographers there. Also, do a Goole search and have a look at their website and view their work. A professional photographer will have a website that complements their work.