It can feel like an impossible situation, when you are sitting in front of a camera taking Headshots, to completely let go and just be. I mean after all these Headshots, that you are paying a good deal of money for and what you are going to be presenting to the industry and to all the world to see. The thing is it does not have to be that way. You can capture that IMPACT Headshot and the key to it is just being you.
It all begins with choosing that photographer whose work you love and who you feel the most comfortable with. That is one of the biggest decisions to capturing that IMPACT Headshot. When you are fully comfortable and confident with your photographer then you are going to be so excited for your session. You are going to bring your "A" game and not worry about anything. The second and I believe most important is for you to just be open and be "You". Headshots are just like acting, in which you are personalizing everything. It is very easy to fall into a "character", but to me when I see this happening it is just another place for you to hide behind. You and your photographer should be on the same page and able to collaborate. When I am working with an actor I am always coaching them and talking to them to figure out ways I can get what it is we are both looking for. Sometimes it does take awhile, but when it happens and I can see it in the view finder, it is like magic. I can see the actor truly showing me who they are. That sparkle and intensity is right there in their eyes. Then I show my actor the back of the camera and they can see what that IMPACT Headshot looks like. I love staring back and watch them not be able to take their eyes off of the photo. When I get that reaction, I know we nailed the IMPACT Headshot. Heck during our session we nail a ton of IMPACT Headshots all because you were open and not hiding behind any wall.
Another problem actors face is selecting that IMPACT Headshot, depending on the photographer, you will probably have to be looking through 300-800 photos. That can be a daunting task. So how do you narrow them down? Here is some tips to figuring it out.
(If you photograph with me... Not sure how other photographers get you your images)
1. When you get your online gallery, DO NOT LOOK AT ALL YOUR PHOTOS AT ONE. Take each look separate. If you look at all your images at once you will most likely become overwhelmed and just give up before you even started.
2. When looking at your photos the first time just select and favorite only the photos that instinctively jump out at you. Choose the ones that leave some impression on you. Remember just trust your gut.
3. Once you have narrowed down each look to about 20 images then you can start nitpicking at each photos. You can take away awkward smiles, blurry photos, photos that just no longer leave that impactful impression. The key is to see the image in which you are telling the story of who you are. The image or images in which you cannot stop looking at your eyes. The image that anyone who sees it wants to know more about you and what you are thinking about. That all will appear in your eyes and expression and overall vibe of the image.
4. Once you have narrowed that down, now is the time that you take, lets say 5 of each look, and share those favorites with only people in the industry you trust. Let them way in on your favorites and see if they like your favorites as well. Odds are they are going to love them. They will probably come back with such positive criticism because you left and IMPACT on them.
5. Once you get their feedback all you need to do is look at those favorites again and go with your gut feeling... That will never lie to you.
6. Off to COLORWORKS and have Joe, Danny and Rob start working on the retouching and printing aspect. They are truly the very best in the business and I trust no one else to handle my images and my clients. You will be blown away by the outcome!
I truly hope this helps all actors. Headshots can be very tough, whether picking a photographer, capturing the right photos, picking the right photo and even post processing of them. You have to trust your instincts and have to be truly open to the process and allow your TRUE self to shine through. That is what makes an IMPACT HEADSHOT!