Who needs headshots?

Cleveland’s Premier NightClub, xxx xxxxxx xxx, is now hiring staff for the summer, with potential to stay on afterwards. We are currently interviewing for bartenders, beer-tub girls, and cocktail waitresses.

Please forward your resume, with a head-shot, for consideration. Thank you.

This is an actual ad for a job posting. Maybe it’s not fair, but the reality is how you look and how you present yourself all come into play in getting hired for any job, not just as an actor. A professional headshot says a lot about a person; not only does it tell people that you’re serious enough about your career to get the proper tools to market yourself, but it’s also a nice way to give a potential employer or client a visual reminder of you. After sifting through piles of resumes and applications things tend to get blurry for even the most savvy of hiring managers. Leaving them a professional headshot can be the thing that sets you apart from the rest of the pile.

Here are a few tips when getting a headshot:

1. Use a professional    I’m sure your brother’s friend will give you a great deal, but the fact is that it does matter who shoots the picture. Photographers who specialize in headshots tend to be better at working with people, and do a much better job focusing on making YOU look good. Use somebody that doesn’t know what they’re doing and you’ll not only put yourself in a bad light, you’ll have wasted your time and possibly money.
2. Make sure you’re comfortable with the photographer    I’ve known some excellent photographers who do great work, but really can’t work with people–to the point that people get creeped out or uncomfortable in the middle of a shoot. This shows in the photographs! Take some time speaking with the photographer or even meet them in person before the shoot; you should know in a couple of minutes whether or not you click.
3. Use a stylist    Even if you’re a guy, even if you put on makeup every day, and even if you yourself are a professional stylist. It makes a big difference to have a pair of eyes devoted exclusively to making sure you look good during a shoot, and makes a big difference in the final product.
4.  For clothing, simple is better    Yes, you want some things that will show your personality, but that Hawaiian shirt you love just may be a little too visually stimulating to use in your headshots. You don’t want anything to detract from the focus of the photos, which is you and NOT what you’re wearing.
5. Get some R & R before the shoot    I know, easier said than done 🙂 But if you’re tired and stressed out during your photo shoot, that energy will be picked up by the camera, and your photos will show you looking tired and stressed out. Get a full 8 hours of sleep the night before your shoot. Drink plenty of water the day before and the day of your shoot; not only is water better for your skin, it will also flush out some of the toxins in your body that leave you feeling tired. If possible, try to schedule at least a couple hours of breathing room before and after your shoot. You don’t want to have to worry about rushing from work to your shoot; do NOT try to squeeze in a photo shoot during lunch!

If you follow these tips chances are you’ll have a great photo session. A great headshot can do wonders for your reputation as an actor or a business professional. To see some samples of good headshots check out www.braedyphoto.com. If you’re in the Northeast Ohio area I’d love to take care of your photographic needs!

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