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New Headshots For Actors

Photo by Clayton

Last week I had an old client return to me for new headshots.

In the six years between our two previous shoots, much had happened. She’d had a baby, two new agents, two new headshots photographers and a distinct lack of work.

She showed me her current headshots from photographers suggested by her agents. It was clear she was unhappy with them and wasn’t getting as many auditions as previously. She knew they weren’t showing her at her best, and they made her look a bit flat and lifeless.

My client is a confident, vivacious woman full of life and personality. It pained me to see her headshots showing a different person who was lifeless and flat. It was no wonder she wasn’t getting much work. 

New Headshots For Actors

An actor’s headshot has to grab the attention of the casting director. It has to make them look at you, want to investigate your CV and invite you to an audition.

If it doesn’t do these three key elements, it’s not doing its job as it should. And, as a consequence, you won’t get many auditions.

Recognising this is important. There is a chain-reaction effect to a poor headshot, it will stop you from getting asked to audition, and if you don’t get the chance to perform at an audition, you don’t get any work. It’s as simple as that!

New HeadshotsHave to Be Right

I often wonder why some agents use a particular photographer, especially when the new headshots they deliver aren’t very good? Is it because the agent doesn’t know the difference between an epic headshot and a poor one? It can’t be. Surely they know a good headshot from a bad one, this is a major part of their job!

New Headshots For ActorsMaybe they keep using those headshot photographers because they have a loyalty to them, built up over several years, or they are friends? In reality, this shouldn’t matter, the agent should be looking to market their actors using the best tools available. And, they should be aware of current headshot trends and who is losing their touch.

The Headshot Review

Also, shouldn’t the agent notice when one of their clients isn’t getting many auditions? Shouldn’t they carry out a profile review? They should be checking their headshot, their CV and their skills? To see if they reflect the actor’s current status.

Including asking the questions, is your headshot up to date, and is your headshot showing, connection, emotion and personality? And, if not, get a new headshot that does.

The agent, should be looking to give their actors the best possible chance of booking more work? More work for the actor means more commission for them.

This process shouldn’t be left solely to your agent, they are basic questions every actor should be asking themselves about their headshot. If you are unsure how to spot the components of an epic headshot, read How To Analyse Your Headshot. This series of posts breaks the process down into easily understood concepts.

You have to be realistic when you perform this task if you want the best possible headshot. Epic headshots are achievable for every actor, it is a process, and if you apply the process together with your headshot photographer, your new headshots will be awesome! 

But, you have to work together.

But You Have to Take Action

Anyway, back to my client… 

New Headshots For Actors

Photo Karsten Winegeart

She was feeling frustrated at the lack of opportunities over the past couple of years. She knew her new headshots weren’t good enough, and they weren’t showing her at her best.

The good thing was, she had decided to take control of her career rather than leave it all to her agent.

 She knew her headshots weren’t ‘cutting the mustard’, she knew her previous headshots were better than her current ones.

 She also knew she could do better and give herself a better chance of more auditions.

The result was a fun shoot where she felt relaxed. Feeling relaxed, she was confident to express proper emotions in her eyes. And, because she felt confident, she had a great connection with the camera. All of these work together and helped her express her personality and produce an Epic headshot!


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