This single most critical element of your success until you’re a star is your headshot. If you want an agency acting on your behalf, they must see that you have a spectacular theatrical and/or commercial headshot.
The funny thing is that if you’re like most actors, you pretty much hate getting your headshots done. And you’d much rather be in front of a movie camera! Right?
But there’s no getting around it, you have to have a great headshot since it’s the first way most agents, managers, and casting directors see you. So the bottom line is that you gotta do whatever you can to get a fabulous shot! Over our many years of helping thousands of actors, here are a few things we’ve found that will help you get your best headshot:
- Always use a professional headshot photographer. Perfect lighting, camera angles, and an understanding of industry trends are essential. Lighting is one of the hardest things to do, so make sure the photographer you choose is great at it.
- Ladies, ALWAYS use a professional hair and makeup stylist for your shoot. Guys, sometimes you need a little help here, too, but you may be able to get away without it.
- Relax but look alive! The real “you” is seen in your eyes. A tense attitude or holding yourself back will leave you with flat, lifeless shots — and those never work!
- Know your casting and get shots that match it. Your headshot conveys to Hollywood what roles you can play, but you’ve got to match up to it in person. You could have a fabulously glamorous headshot or your best James Dean, but if that’s not your casting, forget it. It won’t do anything for you. Figure out your casting and make sure the photographer is aligned with giving you the shots you need.
Are you crystal clear on what roles your look and energy would be best suited for? Do you know how to make sure it comes through in your headshot? If not, give it some serious thought before you shoot. Even discuss it with your acting teacher and other professionals to see what they think.
Or you might want to consider a coaching strategy session with Smart Girls to discuss what would be the best way to market you. The session is also a great way to prepare mentally so you can be fully free to be greatest, most uninhibited self on your SHOOT DAY!
And if you’ve already taken new pictures, Smart Girls is always happy to give you our input and help you pick out your best shots when you use any of our mailing services.