The Secret To a Good Headshot
Expensive isn’t always better, but going professional is.
Even if you have a buddy with a really good camera, it’s always better to hire a real professional. Find a photographer who does headshots for a living and at their past work. Every photographer has a different style; find one that you like.
Don’t overdo it on the glamour shots.
Directors want to see you—imperfections and all. Don’t photoshop out your wrinkles and don’t wear too much makeup. Casting directors won’t be too happy if you show up to the audition looking like an entirely different person than the one they expected.
Find a simple background.
You can usually choose between natural light and studio lighting for your photo. Natural light looks more authentic and “film-like”, while studio lighting is more controlled and polished. Each choice achieves something different; talk to your photographer about what you want and they can help you make the decision.
Get the right framing.
Professional headshots are shot chest-up. Extreme close-ups are off-putting, and full-body shots just aren’t what directors want to see.
Because only your head and shoulders will be visible in the shot, don’t waste time worrying about what pants or shoes to wear. Instead, choose a nice, solid-color top with a bit of texture to it. If it brings out the color of your eyes, that’s an added bonus.
Print your headshots and resumes to be 8 inches by 10 inches always! Will cropping your headshot to 8×10 take away from your beauty? NO! Will cropping your headshot to 8×10 help you look more professional? YES!
All of the images in this article are cropped to 8×10.