Monday, April 22, 2013

Going for that Scary Character Look?

We see what you're doing there.
Then, and only then, should you choose not to retouch your photo. It might sound a little crazy, but there is a demand for the Scary Man Next Door. The Serial Killer, the Guy Who Did It. The Skinny Druggie, the Scary Witch...

If that's the type you're going for, we can leave the deep wrinkles, I can give you harsh lighting, I can pose you to show off your angles, scruff, and penetrating stare. It's the only time I suggest leaving an image raw and untouched. Sounds scary, but this trick works if that's what we're both going for.

Monday, April 15, 2013

What Makes a Good Headshot? Part 7


Not only does my basic retouching sharpen and whiten the eyes, I also smooth and lighten underneath the eyes, smooth out little lines and pores, and get rid of stray hairs - all the distracting stuff. I use Photoshop tools to help you stand out, brightening colors in a very natural and human way. Retouching a photo can be all the difference between an okay headshot and a fantastic one. 

Your headshots are a major investment - the most important tool you have in your toolbox! I make sure that all your headshots are great, usable ones that will get you in the door; it's worth the little bit of money to make your headshot look the most professional, like it could be in a magazine. Because, heck, magazine interviews are an acting goal too, right? So always have the most professional, most polished tools. Make the quality of your tools be the best. It's the only way in this biz.

Not Bad...
...But So Much Better!
This is You.
This is You in a Magazine!

Monday, April 8, 2013

What Makes a Good Headshot? Part 6

She knows what I'm talking about.

A Makeup/Hair Artist

Guys, you do need basic foundation, and sometimes a lash darkener will work wonders on your pretty peepers. Ladies, makeup photographs waaaay differently than the naked eye sees it in real life. Real Life Makeup is too light and doesn't work. And let's be honest, who doesn't love letting someone else do their makeup? You don't have to worry about anything, you don't have to buy new product, you don't have to put on individual false eyelashes yourself! (I mean, seriously, what's harder than that!?)

Professional actors get their makeup done on set by professional makeup artists. You know when you see someone famous in person and you think, "Yeeesh!" It's because they're not wearing professional makeup artist applied makeup. I once had a client, a pretty young thing, who took headshots with me and decided to do her makeup herself. If the goal was to look like she wasn't wearing any, she accomplished that. She came to me a few month later and hired one of my makeup artists and after receiving her proofs, called me up. I'll never forget it. She said, "When I did my own makeup, I looked like I was an aspiring actress. With the makeup artist, I look like I'm already working regularly."

Again, your headshot is the most important tool you have! Invest in a good headshot photographer (you know, like one who has 20+ years experience doing it) invest in the hair and makeup artist, and invest in the retouching. Your headshot is what gets you in the door. Get good ones!

Monday, April 1, 2013

What Makes a Good Headshot? Part 5


I online stalk you, but without all the creepy connotation. 

Already Famous!
When you email me for info on a shoot, I look you up online; your website, your imdb, everything, to get an idea of who you are. I look at your makeup, your clothes and styles. I see the tools you're working with, and can get a pretty good idea of who you are, who you're trying to be, and what you need to accomplish that. When I see you in person for the first time, I already know who I'm working with; I recognize you. 

You're already famous to me. I'm shooting a celebrity's headshot!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

What Makes a Good Headshot? Part 4

A Great Photographer!

Did I mention I have 140 great reviews on Actor Rated?

See what other clients have to say about my approach to Headshots.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Serial Shooter Invents Power Hour

I once had a gig as a major acting school's official Headshot Photographer. Each student got nine frames in five minutes. In just two years, I shot over 5,000 actors. This was back when everything was film instead of a digital image one could just push 'delete' on, so every shot had to be perfect. And it was. I learned fast and quick what made a good photo (hint - the majority of it is perfect lighting!). At the graduation shows where each actor gave invited agents their packages, the agents would constantly marvel at how they didn't need to ask the new clients they just picked up to reshoot new headshots. The 9 shots I took gave them everything they needed.

That's kinda how the Power Hour idea started. I can get a lot of great shots in just one hour. We go over your wardrobe by emailing photos of what you want to bring (I approve the colors) a few days before, and if you need a makeup artist, you meet with one before we shoot
, and she stays with you for touch ups, different lip color, etc. When it's time for your one hour, we shoot! 100 photos, 1 location, and unlimited looks! If you change clothes fast, you can get more looks. It's so simple.
You get a fantastic shoot and get the photos you need. The Power Hour may just be my best invention yet.

You should try it. Click here!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What Makes a Good Headshot? Part 3

Understanding Trends!

Back in the early aughts, color film was introduced to the headshot world. We haven't looked back. Then digital cameras came on the scene. Finally, online submissions came to play and what used to be standard - 3/4 shots, showing your body from the top of your head to just above the knees - were no longer usable because you couldn't see enough of your face online.

Those are the old trends, and now because of the constantly changing digital world we live in, headshot photography has new trends every year! It's true! Chandelier earrings, motorcycle jackets, ironic graphic t-shirts; all these things help your agent and casting director guesstimate how old your headshots are.  

You Know He Sparkles.
A great photographer knows not only fashion trends, but also current tv trends. Like the brooding lead bad boy. Here's an example of an actor who's perfect for that type of role. I never shoot clients with shadows in the eyes, but we decided that this is his type and we really wanted to sell that. I lit his face with darker shadows, and posed him to highlight his angles and jaw. This type of character is hot on all the procedurals, cable shows, and of course tween film scene right now. This character is the lead in tons of films right now. He doesn't just look like the character, he is the character. And his agents are thrilled!