What Makes a Great actors Headshot
Many components come together for a truly great headshot, one that stands out from the crowd, grabs the viewers attention and showcases an actors personality, look and uniqueness.
There’s a lot of technical expectations for a headshot, and that’s exactly what they are, expectations. They’re what a headshot should be - the image should be lit well, focus should be exact, lens choice should be pleasing and it shouldn’t be edited beyond what’s appropriate. These are all elements for a photographer to consider, but alone they only contribute towards creating what could be the worlds fanciest passport photo. A great headshot is way beyond the technical, it’s about creating a connection and it’s my belief that the best images are made when I understand what a client wants from their session and when they feel comfortable and confident during the shoot.
Our session actually starts a week before you walk into the studio, we’ll arrange a call to discuss what you’d like to get from the shoot, the vibe we’re aiming for in your images, if you want to shoot in studio, out on location or both, we’ll talk though clothing options you might have in mind and touch on what types of roles you would be seen for. With our discussion in mind i’ll craft a few ideas so we’re heading in with a plan and can maximise our time together.
On the day of the session we’ll recap and talk through the plan for the shoot, i’m not precious and open to ideas incase there is anything you feel we won’t cover. I’ll talk you through some simple directions, do a few test shots and we’ll get going.
When we’re shooting I don’t hide anything, I have my camera connected up to a computer so we can see the images in a large view and throughout i’ll encourage you to look through them with me for critique, if there’s anything that needs to change or if I feel we can do a little more i’ll coach you through the process. I’m a believer in giving more options than you have final choices, so if your receiving 3 retouched images we’ll shoot more variety than that to ensure you have a solid portfolio for different opportunities.
After the session
Shoot day is just part of the whole process - selecting which images you’d like to be retouched is equally as important. To save you going through the hundreds of photographs we’ve taken i’ll sort through them and pick out ones that are good and different to create an online contact sheet for you to make selections from. Being able to pick the images in your own time is key, rather than rushing to make selections during the shoot it gives you chance to reflect and be sure of your choices. Having input from your agent is invaluable, also if you'd like my input i'll happily provide recommendations.
Once i’ve received your choices those images will be retouched in a detailed but subtle way. I don’t press a magic skin smoothing button in photoshop or apply any filters, instead I work carefully and with precision in a way that won't be noticeable to the viewer and provides a very natural looking result that's incredibly subtle. Your headshot will look just like you, on your best day.
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