When defining your brand you’ll need to think about how the clothing in your headshots will play into this. Choose items that are in line with the characters you’re trying to market yourself for..
- I always recommend wearing solid tones, such as greys, and colours. Patterns can sometimes work but are more often distracting in headshots. We try not to distract the Casting Director's eyes away from your eyes. Solid whites can also be problematic as they can often look far too bright in a headshot. The eye is naturally drawn to the brightest part of the image, which again can distract from your eyes.
- Don't wear anything baggy. Well fitting, fresh looking garments look better than loose clothing. We need to see your frame and physique accurately.
- We don't show brand logos or slogans in headshots, this is to avoid conflicts with the commercial or film brands that you are auditioning for.
- Keep jewelry minimal.
- Layering clothes tends to look good. Non-bulky jackets, blazers, jean jackets and leather can look great in headshots.
- Ladies - Make sure you're wearing the correct bra for the top you've chosen so that bra straps or parts of the bra are not showing.
- Bring a good variety of clothing changes to the shoot. If we find that something doensn't look good on camera it's great to have other options to work with.
- Please press clothes before the shoot. Wrinkles in clothes are impossible to Photoshop out completely.
If you do intend to get a haircut, it's best to have it done about a week to 3 days prior to the shoot. Freshly cut hair can sometimes look odd on camera.
You’ll want a simplistic style that reflects you.. Don’t do anything too different than how you would have it at an audition. Casting Directors like to meet the person they see in the headshot, not someone that looks completely different.
Bring any hair styling equipment/products that you may need with you. For ladies, bring anything you use to tame fly-aways.
Men generally don't need makeup for headshots. Shave before you leave for a shoot so that you have enough time for any redness to disappear. But not long enough that you get a 5 o’clock shadow, this can't be photoshopped out. Moisturize.
Ladies if you are getting makeup done by a makeup artist at the shoot, come with minimal or no makeup.
If you decide to do your own make-up, keep it light and natural. Bring make-up and lip balm/gloss with you to the shoot in case any touch-ups are needed.
- Don't do anything too different to how you would present yourself at an audition. Casting Directors expect to meet the person they see in the headshot, and if they get a shock they’ll likely feel like you’ve wasted their time.
- Don’t do anything that will affect the way your skin naturally looks. Dry or peeling skin, swelling and redness as a result of extreme skin treatments and sunburn etc cannot be photoshopped out. Small blemishes are not a problem to photoshop out.
- Remove unnecessary facial hair prior to your shoot.
- Do not wear coloured contact lenses in your headshots, they are very obvious and Casting needs to see your real eye colour.
Get plenty of sleep and stay hydrated in the days prior to the shoot. You want to look healthy and alive in your headshots.
Modelling for a headshot photograph is like acting for a still camera. Take some time in advance to consider what kind of feeling you are trying capture in your image. Think about the characters you want to audition for and then practice their "looks" in front of the mirror.
On the day, you will want to feel relaxed. Try stretching and breathing or yoga prior to the shoot to get prepared.
Practice good posture. Good posture indicates confidence.
Practice factual expressions. We'll be capturing a variety of expressions, from stoic to overjoyed. Practice real smiles. Fake smiles are noticeable.
Practice chin and gaw-line awareness. Sometimes, the camera will be right at eye level, making it possible—depending on how you have your head placed—for it to appear as thought you have a double chin (even if you do not). Throughout the photo shoot—even when you are asked to lower your chin—pretend there is a large orange underneath your chin. You always want a space between your chin and your neck.
Headshot sessions are a lot of fun. Use your acting skills. Get into character. Play. Express emotion with your eyes. Enjoy it. We will take a bunch of photos and not all of them have to be winners. So experiment, and be ready for discovery.
Your eyes are a window to your personality and must be active and engaging in your headshots.
Here is a great technique if you want to look confident in front of a camera: