5 Headshot Secrets from a Casting Director

How to maximise your chances of getting your next big role

Secret #1

Your headshot is more important than your CV

They say when you meet a person for the first time, you have 5 seconds to make a good impression. Your headshot is the first thing a casting director will see, even before they look at your CV! Therefore, your headshot has to be outstanding regardless of the big roles you have done in the past. 
Casting directors often review hundreds of possible candidates each day and most profiles will be discarded instantly because of a poor headshot. A professional headshot is a statement of intent. It gives casting directors an impression that you are serious about your craft and that you are worthy of a closer look.

Secret #2

What you wear matters 

Casting directors love when a headshot resonates with the role the actor is applying for. This means wearing appropriate clothing during your headshot session to showcase that you can play various roles. For men example a good way to add variety in headshots is to wear a denim or leather jacket. While a classic one colour shirt can never really go wrong, you should always include more variety to your headshot session as this increases your odds of being called in for an audition. 

Secret #3

Pros hand out prints and CVs

If you want to be remembered, leave your headshot in a printed format with the casting director. Hardly anyone does this these days but those who do will often get reviewed for a second time.  This is a huge advantage, as you come across as more professional and more memorable, especially if other actors applying for the same role have arrived empty handed and only have an online presence.
Printed headshots are often kept and circulated amongst the casting team and directors. This means while you might not get the role you originally applied for, there is a possibility your headshot being viewed by others looking for someone like you.
TIP: Providing a printed CV with your headshot and including your contact details on the rear of your print, is a great way of making it easy for the casting directors to remember and contact you.

Secret #4

Your headshot must be current

If you change your look you should change your headshot. This is essential if you change your hairstyle radically or go through a body transformation like a significant weight loss. 
When it comes to headshots you should learn to embrace your unique facial features as these are your selling points – trying to look just like everyone else does not improve your chances to be chosen for the role. 

Secret #5

Headshots are part of your marketing. Learn to invest in it. 

Your headshots are your brand so how much are you willing to invest to get your brand recognised? If you aren’t willing to make an investment in your brand, what is the point? If you haven’t reached your acting career goals yet, how long are you happy to stand in the background for?
If you headshot is not up to professional standards your chances for being considered for bigger and more serious roles are significantly lowered. When you you submit a professional headshot and CV it tells the casting director you haven’t just woken up yesterday with a dream to be an actor – it tells them you have gone that extra mile and are worthy of being called to an audition!

Your Talent is Not the Issue

If you have been submitting dozens of applications with terrible response rate then stop. I can say with great certainty that it is NOT your TALENT that is letting you down, it’s your headshot. When you submit a poor headshot, very few casting directors will take a gamble on you as you come across like someone who doesn’t care how they appear. Casting directors want actors who they can trust and who they can rely on. They will not risk hiring someone with a headshot taken with a smartphone when an equally good candidate has a submitted professional headshots, contact details and CV.
Look at the pictures above and ask yourself which headshot looks more professional? 
The competition for roles is fierce and more actors are realising the true value in a good headshots and are willing to invest in them. So how much is a good headshot worth? The answer is simple; how much you want your next role?

Headshots Come in Many Styles

A professional headshot photographer will get the best out of you to show the world what you are capable of.

A Little Bit About Me

I’m full-time portrait photographer based in London, UK, who has a degrees in Film & Television Production and Masters in Media Management. In addition to taking promo stills for movies and commercials, I have been part of countless castings in Los Angeles and in London. This means I know what makes casting directors want. 
Over the last ten years I have helped countless actors to make their Spotlight profiles stand out and I regularly get emails from actors asking if I could update their headshots. I’m currently accepting new actors and performers for my Signature Headshot Sessions here in London, UK. So if you would like to update your headshots with then me click the button below to learn more.
Book a headshot session with me
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