An acting career is challenging, no matter how you look at it; and there are certain tips and techniques that aspiring actors should know, to make the road to success a bit smoother. Too many actors fail in the area of having a professional looking portfolio. They rely on basic family photos and selfies to do the trick. But when you are in front of a reputable agent, you will need to have headshots that are polished and refined. But how do you know where to go, or how to prepare?
First things first, find a professional headshot photographer. Ask people in the business for suggestions and then check the photographer’s references. After you find the right photographer, follow these highly effective suggestions to take your best headshot pictures.
1. Don’t overdress or wear too much makeup
A great headshot should look like you, not your doppelganger. Agents needs to see what you really look like in a natural setting. Of course, you don’t want to roll out of bed and head to the photo studio, but you want to look as natural as possible.
2. Get plenty of rest and a full night’s sleep
The best way to look great naturally, is to be well rested. Make sure you get plenty of sleep the night before, and preferably, the week before. Partying before a photo shoot is never a good idea. But if you must, beware of consuming too many alcoholic beverages, as they dehydrate you, which can make your skin look dull, and leave you feeling tired.
3. Practice photo taking at home
Just as you do with all those selfies you post on Twitter; practice makes perfect. Stand in front of your mirror at home and practice your smile and facial expressions. It is best to know what works before you get to the photographer’s studio.
4. Let the photographer know what kind of photos you need
Communicate clearly with your photographer and let him/her know exactly what you need and how you are intending to use the photos. A professional will then be able to guide you as to the best poses, backgrounds, lighting, etc.
5. The color black is often the best option
Dress simply and comfortably for your photos. You will want to avoid clothing that you will have to fuss with, like drooping shirt straps, ill-fitting bras, or clothing too small or excessively tight. Avoid wearing white, unless you have a colorful tank top or camisole underneath. A white shirt can drown you out in a photo. Black is usually the best option. A black dress shirt, dress, or jumpsuit, makes your face, eyes, and skin coloring, stand out.
And most importantly, go into the photo shoot with a great attitude. If you are feeling ill, disappointed, angry at someone, or just plain old “out of it”, it is best to reschedule your appointment.