HEADSHOTS

Your headshot is your calling card. The first thing casting directors, agents and directors see, making that all important first impression and forming the basis of that split second decision of whether you could be right for the role.

Most likely you already have a set of headshots but it’s time to be honest with yourself. How old are they? Do you still have that hairstyle? Do they really look like you? If your headshot doesn’t look like the person who walks into the casting, it’s unlikely you’ll get the role.

Make sure this essential tool is up to scratch with our top tips for headshots:

It needs to look like you.

Yes it seems obvious but your headshot needs to look like you. The real you, looking natural. Your headshot isn’t the time to experiment or feel the need to glam up. The person in that photograph should match the person at the audition.It should reflect your casting type.

As well as looking like you, a good headshot suggests your casting type and the kinds of role you would play. Discuss this with your photographer and consider bringing a change of clothing (eg. t-shirt and collared shirt or blouse). If you’re a guy it’s a good idea to have shots both clean shaven and with beard/stubble while women should consider hair up and hair down options.

Use a professional.

Your headshots are a professional tool and the industry standard is a specific type of image. Do your research and choose a professional headshot photographer who suits your budget and you feel comfortable with. Remember this is the person who has to capture who you are.

Keep it up to date!

Your headshot needs to look like the person you are now, not who you were a few years ago. If you’ve changed your hair style or colour or haven’t had new headshots in two years or more, it’s time to get booked in.

Don’t skimp!

Your headshot isn’t something to try and save money on. It is the most important part of your portfolio and worth investing in. You are worth investing in. Uncle Jim might have a fancy DSLR camera but does he know how to take a headshot rather than a portrait or holiday snap? Do you want to put your career in his hands?

Bonus Tip.

Embrace what makes you unique. Your headshot is about YOU, wrinkles, warts and all. You are unique and while you want to look your best, resist the temptation to have your photographs retouched beyond simple fixes like removing temporary blemishes.

If you’re in need of headshots, whether it’s your first set or an update to reflect a new look, we hope these tips have been useful. Choosing a photographer can be a difficult process but here at YAFTA we make it simple!

YAFTA runs regular Headshot Days offering an hour’s headshot session with a professional photographer and five retouched shots for the very competitive price of £80.

For more info and to book visit www.yafta.co.uk/headshots

See you on screen!

Elliot Laurence trained at ALRA North after graduating from Sheffield Hallam University. Continuing to work as an actor he has worked with companies such as Bolton Octagon, HOMEmcr, Collingwood Learning and Sheffield Theatres.
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Adam received his training at The Academy Of Live And Recorded Arts (ALRA), where he studied stage, screen and audio performance. Since graduating Adam has been cast in various productions in a versatile range of mediums including voice over, theatre, music video, and film. Adam has experience working as a teacher with children, adults and vulnerable groups too.
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Anna Dawson is an Actress, TV Presenter and Musician alongside being a Writer and PR/Marketing Exec. Additionally Anna works in production and has worked as production manager on various feature films such as the recent Scott & Sid which filmed in Yorkshire. With a degree in Politics from Durham University and a long list of acting credits in film, TV and theatre, Anna was chosen to become the Public Relations Officer for the Equity Yorkshire Ridings General Branch Committee.
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Lee Maxwell Simpson gained a first class degree in Drama from Manchester University before training as an actor at London's Royal Central School of Speech and Drama. After graduating, he appeared in a number of commercials, notably for Thomson Holidays and Moonpig.com, and various short films and stage productions, including a National Youth Theatre tour to the Middle East and a spoken word European tour with the novelist Jonathan Coe.
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Ian Puleston-Davies is a professional actor who has recently filmed Marcella, Beowulf and Lewis. Ian played Owen Armstrong in Coronation Street for 5 years prior to his recent acting achievements. Ian has an impressive acting CV having been in most major soaps and dramas in the UK over the past 20 years. Some of his credits include Eastenders, Waterloo Road, Silent Witness, Life on Mars, I'm Alan Partridge, Dalziel & Pascoe to name a few. He is currently writing his own screenplay and working as an actor but will also be finding the time to teach YAFTA masterclasses. Ian supports the development of actors at YAFTA.
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Charlotte is the Managing Director of YAFTA. She is a TV Presenter, Actress, and Agent. Charlotte also owns YAFTA Talent Agency and YAFTA Consultancy. Charlotte is currently working as a TV Presenter for various companies including Made in Leeds TV. In 2015 Charlotte had her own TV show called ‘Challenge Charlotte’ which aired across the Made Network in Leeds, Tyne & Wear, Bristol and Cardiff, the show is set for a second series in 2016. She also played the role of Hannah O’Rourke in BBC1’s Happy Valley and played various roles in TV Comedy Sketch Show ‘Cool Beans’. In January 2016, Charlotte filmed the part of Jane in Coronation Street. She will also be one of the judges for Made in Leeds’ TV Programme ‘Star Made’.
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Charlotte is the Managing Director of YAFTA. She is a TV Presenter, Actress, and Agent. Charlotte also owns YAFTA Talent Agency and YAFTA Consultancy. Charlotte is currently working as a TV Presenter for various companies including Made in Leeds TV. In 2015 Charlotte had her own TV show called ‘Challenge Charlotte’ which aired across the Made Network in Leeds, Tyne & Wear, Bristol and Cardiff, the show is set for a second series in 2016. She also played the role of Hannah O’Rourke in BBC1’s Happy Valley and played various roles in TV Comedy Sketch Show ‘Cool Beans’. In January 2016, Charlotte filmed the part of Jane in Coronation Street. She will also be one of the judges for Made in Leeds’ TV Programme ‘Star Made’.
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