Headshots can be tricky, but once we get them right, they can really make a difference to open up the door to get you in the casting room.
Casting directors only see a stamp size thumbnail of your headshot, in the sea of thousands of others, so your headshot needs to be strong to encourage them to select you and look more at your profile, showreel etc. Having outdated headshots makes your chance of selection slim (or means when you walk in the room you get a negative response as you aren’t as the CDs expects).
Some tips for a good headshot:
Try and give off a feeling rather than a ‘character'. Shots always look best when they are more you thinking a certain way - i.e. thinking something playful as if the camera is your mate and you are sharing a look about someone rather than being the ‘cheeky' role. Or thinking about the camera as someone you distrust rather than the ‘mean’ character, or thinking of the camera as someone you love dearly rather than trying to give a ‘warm’ character.
Variation of expression. It wants to be you, but with a different energy in each. In general plenty of options for straight face, small smile, smiling with teeth.
Wear plain coloured top without patterns. Just offer some different necklines. Don’t go too heavy on character costume as it is just distracting.
Minimal makeup for girls - we want to see you! Options with hair up, hair down.
Boys - if you have a beard, go with it or stubble then shave at the end of the session and get a few clean shaven shots.
Discuss with the photographer what you want to get from it, so you are working together.
Avoid very heavy editing
We have secured a 10% discount on prices for our clients with Jennifer Evans.
One of our clients discovered her and, initially we weren’t too sure from her website, but the photographs came back really well done. She has just finished two more of our clients headshots and they have been very very good (so it wasn’t just a fluke). All these clients had struggled to get something that clicked with other photographers.
Jennifer is an actress who I know from my casting days, so understands the process well and is great and putting people at ease.
She is already a lot cheaper than what is on the market and excellent value for the quality of her images I think, so with our discount even better.
Here is her website with contact details: http://jennifer-evans-photographer.com/
We also recommend Wolf Marloh. He is more pricey and doesn’t offer any discounts, but always does an excellent job. He is also very eccentric and fun to shoot with.
Other recommend headshot photographers:
We are happy for you suggest photographers not on this list that you would like to work with.
Tony Blake (North West)