There are two main headshot types in the acting world: commercial and feature shots. Commercial shots are usually the simple smile shot that you use to book commercials, background gigs, and most of the work in Spokane. Featured shots are more dramatic images used to cast featured roles and featured extra parts, and stage roles. For an actor in Spokane, it is worth it to have both types in your portfolio. There are more niche styles, but commercial and featured are the ones you want to focus on (unless your agent tells you otherwise – always listen to your agent). No matter the type of headshot you have, one thing is super important: remember that your headshot is your calling card.
Commercial Headshots are simple, clean, and nice images. They feature you with a smile. When a casting director is looking at the image, they want to see a friendly salesman. Can you sell Tide detergent? Do I want to buy car from you. Do you look like you are nice and easy to work with? This headshot is what will get you most of your work in Spokane. It should be clean and simple.
Industrial Headshots are for industrial productions. This is the business setting. Suits, ties, and professional attire are a must. These gigs are for company training videos, presentations, and other work in the professional work environment. Dress the part. It s nice for the casting directors to see that you can play the clean and professional business person.
Modeling Headshots are geared towards the modeling field. This is the only category of headshot that you don’t need to look 100% like you. It’s OK to have over retouched images, abstract posing, and busy clothing. This image is less about “you” and more about the final shot. It helps show the casting directors what you can look like as part of a final product.
Featured Headshots are more dramatic and focus on a particular Character Type. Usually you’ll have a neutral expression with intention in the eyes. You want this headshot to show your dramatic and professional side. With this headshot you’ll be cast for specific roles in Movies, TV shows, Stage Productions and other areas that need a specific look. It’s important to play into your character type (Leading Man, Girl Next Door, Slimy Landlord, etc.) .Be sure to suggest your character type in the photo but don’t go crazy overboard trying to be that character. All we need is a subtle direction and hint. This means that if your character type is Girl Next Door that you should have a soft and sweet (but serious) look with friendly clothing. Whereas if your character is a Scary Shakedown Man that you’ll be more intense and darker clothing. I’ll detail Character Types in the next section.
Promotional Headshots help you get promotional work. Generally this is two distinct looks – the professional business person or the model. If you’re going the business person route, the industrial headshot is pretty close to the look you want. If you are going the model route, you’ll want to look happy, fun, and energetic. You want to be pretty and have people talk to you. Your headshot should covey this.