(All photos pictured in this blog are un-retouched).
I know some actors groan and roll their eyes at getting new headshots taken. I love it! It helps that Seattle has some spectacular headshot photographers that I've gotten to work with. My recent session was with John Ulman Photography.
I love what Bonnie Gillespie says about headshots--it's not a photograph, it's a marketing tool. They are the first, and sometimes only point where a casting director will see you and consider you! It should be something you give thought and consideration!
What am I selling?
A headshot should look like you. Period. You also should hint at what kinds of characters you might play. You don't need a costume, but can to lean-in to how you should be getting cast. If I'm not the drop-dead glamour model type, I don't need the deep V, dark makeup, sexy look. I'm also not a doe-eyed ingénue, so I had to stay away from looks that read too young, or vulnerable.
I targeted the looks I wanted, based off of my actor brand. My type words are Confident, Approachable, Fun-Loving, and Trustworthy.
I am trying to represent myself as a 30-something woman. I noticed that while I love the look of tank tops on other, they tend to make me look younger than I want, so I had a strict NO tank top rule for this session!
(NOTE: This "rule" is for me, I know other women over 30 can rock this, no problem).
Because Fun-Loving is part of my brand, I chose bright colors, rather than dark, to reflect the approachable/fun-loving side, even if I wasn't doing a big toothy grin. (Expect for my one edgy look). I previous headshot I had, I wore black, and that doesn't represent who I am, and who walks into the room in a casting session.
With all that in mind, I also like to see what's our there - trends in wardrobe, backdrops, etc. I look at the headshots of my agency, other agencies, tpsonline.com, I google headshots, I look them up on Instagram. I try to find people similar to my type-- do they have similar hair, coloring, or energy? I screenshot it, so I can find what I like about them, and see if there are elements I can incorporate into my shoot.
Back to Bonnie Gillespie and her article on headshots. She recommends have a line you think in your head as the character you want to come across as.
Some faves from my recent shoot:
At one point I started telling my photographer about Porn for Women--You know, the stuff where guys are photographed doing chores? So we had a good laugh about that being what I was thinking about. Do you think that showed up in one of my shots? That's my secret!