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Question: What do you think about headshots that show several different shots of the actor in different clothes and different poses on one 8x10 vs. traditional headshots with one shot on the 8x10? --Fernando

 

Answer:

Hi Fernando,

The only market in which I've heard of those composite (or picture within a picture) headshots working is in San Francisco, and specifically for children. There is a talent agency there that likes their kids to have at least two different looks on a headshot, and that seems to be the accepted norm by casting directors in northern California.

In Los Angeles and New York--and from what I can tell about other markets such as Chicago, Atlanta, Orlando, and Canada--the best bet is a straight-forward headshot, face forward, smiling, no hands in the shot, no extraneous "information" about where you are or what is around you, visually.

Now, if you are a model, you must have a comp card. However, that's generally smaller than an 8X10, and it has a headshot on one side and three or four smaller "character" photos on the other side.

Hope this helps!

-Bon.

Bonnie Gillespie is a Los Angeles casting columnist, the owner of Cricket Feet Management, and the author of Casting Qs: A Collection of Casting Director Interviews.