Variety is key! This is the most crucial factor to consider. Your headshot should be distinctively you. It can be discouraging to attend an audition with a new headshot only to find ten other actors with the exact same one. The photographer you select should display a range of angles, backgrounds, compositions, poses, and expressions on their website. When reviewing their portfolio, you want each image to be surprising.
ou should feel at ease with the photographer. Typically, you can get a sense of their energy from their website, but it's also important to call them. If you think it's necessary, have a consultation with them. If you leave the headshot session feeling like you'd want to hang out with the photographer, then you've had a great shoot.
Invest in professional headshots. If you want to be taken seriously by the industry, your headshot must project professionalism. If you're too stingy, you may be advised to get new headshots once you meet with an agent or casting director. If you invest initially, you shouldn't need to redo them until your look changes.
Examine the quality of light in a photographer's work. It should be warm and even, with the face showing detail and minimal shadowing. The backgrounds should complement the subject without distracting from them. The expressions and body positions should appear comfortable and friendly.
Your headshot should exude your best energy. Nearly every actor is nervous before a shoot, so examine the subjects' expressions in the photographer's portfolio. Ask yourself, "Would I want to meet these actors? Do they appear approachable, friendly, and confident?" If the answer is yes, the photographer knows how to create an atmosphere that brings out the best in each person.
Photographers are only as good as their weakest photographs. Don't focus solely on the headshots you love; examine the ones you dislike as well. Even if you're not fond of a particular photo, is it consistent with their overall body of work? The mark of a professional is consistency. If the quality of their images varies significantly, obtaining a great headshot is left up to chance. You don't want to leave your career to chance. Consider asking the photographer to email you the proof sheets of three shoots they've done that week. Nowadays, everyone has online proof sheets, so they can send you the link via email. If they decline, there is a good chance that either they are not working enough (a bad sign) or that the proofs do not match the images on their website (an even worse sign).
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