How Actor Headshots are Different

Actor headshots are similar to business headshots, in that we want to capture and show your unique spark, but they are also different, because there are some industry standard practices and expectations that one should keep in mind.

Actors & Artists Headshot Gallery

A Good Actor Headshot

  • Shows off your spark, your personality.
  • Gives an accurate depiction or mimicry of the characters you might enjoy playing.
  • Captures many of the actor's nuances in a single strong image.
  • Is the single most valuable marketing tool an actor can possess.
  • Has engaging eye contact, with camera level or slightly above talent.
  • Has framing, lighting, and background that all enhance the subject without being distracting.
  • It is authentic and looks like the person who will show up for auditions.
  • Tends to be shot in vertical (portrait) orientation.

Two Sub-Types

Commercial: Aimed at the advertising industry, this displays emotional energy and charisma. It demonstrates your ability to sell a product or brand. The lighting is brighter and punchier, with less shadow.

Theatrical: Geared toward casting in films, TV, and plays. Conveys more emotional depth and range. Can be more focused on identifiable personality types. Tends to be darker, Rembrandt lighting, more moody.

Clothing Notes

Just as with normal business headshots, you should bring many options to try. You want to wear clothing that will make you feel confident and comfortable. And it should add to the scene or character you are trying to create. And yes, it should be ironed and ready for the camera. Please don't stuff all your outfits in a duffle or wad them up...

Maximize Your Benefit

Consider what you want to convey through your headshots.

Consider if you have a certain "type" you want to portray if you are shooting theatrical headshots, and how you would describe it.

Consider what ratio of Commercial vs. Theatrical shots you need.

Feel free to share a Spotify or other playlist if you want a certain musical vibe to help you get into the mood.


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