I’ve just spent an awesome weekend in Bradford with a friend who runs an independent horror film festival. It’s called The Haunted House Fear Fest More info here And, I saw a lot of actors’ headshots and horror stories.
Admittedly, I’m not a particular fan of the horror genre. and I was there primarily to support my friend, take a few photos and help wrangle the crowd. Even though I’m not a horror fan I appreciate there were some incredibly talented filmmakers showing their work.
If you consider production time and costs, one thing that stands out is the quality and level of performance. The actors range from willing friends to professional actors.
Actors Headshots And Real Horror Stories
As an actor’s headshot photographer, I instantly pick up on their connection with the camera, plus their emotional content and acting craft. I find it amazing how this jumps out at you, particularly when seeing several short films in quick succession. In the space of a 90 minutes session, you get the chance to compare many actors.
Everyone can see and sense when an actor looks blank or is not in the moment. The audience is instantly aware, especially those that are seasoned film buffs. We know immediately if an actor is in their character and reacting accordingly or not. So we can make a snap judgment whether the acting is good or not.
Do we believe them?
Are they connecting with us?
Are they drawing us into their character?
If not, we tend to disengage.
The same goes for acting headshots,
When we see an actor’s headshot that lacks connection with the viewer, we are not captivated. If we are assaulted by wide staring eyes in a headshot, we draw back from it.
Instead of wanting to know more about them, we want to spend less time with them.
It’s just the same when we see blank, emotionless eyes in a headshot. We automatically disengage from it and move on to the next headshot.
Why then do so many actors use headshots that fall into these categories?
I guess it must be because they aren’t aware of their failings, it can’t be that they don’t care enough to rectify them.
The only answer can be it’s because they don’t know how important these elements are to a successful headshot!
But, what is a successful actor’s headshot? How do we measure its success?
In my opinion,
- One that catches the eye of the casting director.
- One that grabs the attention of a viewer and most importantly
- It’s one that gets the actor more auditions.
It sounds so simple, but so many actors make the same mistakes. As do so many headshot photographers.
Why do so many headshot photographers deliver sub-standard headshots? As far as I’m concerned it’s because they’re not good enough. They don’t know their craft, they don’t know the market and they don’t know how to help an actor express real emotion and personality.
I value every single one of my customers and give each one of them the same service. Every single client is my most valuable client when they are in front of my camera. My goal is to help them score more auditions. I want to see them succeed whether it’s on stage, TV, or in film. Helping them into and on to the next stage of their acting career.
It might be to bag more auditions, it might be to secure an Agent or it might be to give them more confidence to get out there. There are many reasons and all are valid.
Delivering my clients an Epic Headshot is what matters to me.
It’s why so many of them return over the years, my headshots get actors noticed!
Here’s a nice little read about actor’s headshots going wrong
But what do you do when you as an actor choose the wrong headshot? Should you ask for help, is help available? It’s always a good policy to ask your peers or your agent. Choosing your own headshot can be influenced by your own insecurities. Not always the best way to go.