What should I wear for acting headshots?
Updated: Jul 28
Your headshot might be the first thing a casting director sees about you. How can one picture capture all that you have to offer as an actor? How can you communicate your brand, your age range, your probable professions, your professionalism, your individuality, and even your inner emotional life in one picture?
First and foremost, let's create pictures that look like the real you, the one that casting directors will meet at the audition room. Also let's make sure that your type or brand is clearly reflected in your pictures. My goal is to capture your personality and to help you create a look that will get you noticed.
Feel comfortable in your outfit
I believe any color can work if you feel confident wearing it. If you love what you have on, you will feel confident and it will show. However, remember that all the attention must go to your face and expressions, not to your wardrobe and jewelry. (Things to avoid are listed at the end of this blog)
Commercial & Character shots: make it fun and specific without a costume
Bring something fun! So long the wardrobe is not super busy and you stay away from logos, distracting patterns and shiny fabrics, contrasting colors and accessories can give your head shots a much needed personality. I love fun character shots; without wearing costumes you can create a unique look that works for you.
The Business Look
For those professional looks is best to have a suit jacket and a colored shirt/blouse underneath. If you don't own a business suit, visit your local thrift store. You will help a non-profit organization, and you will be getting a must-have professional look for your next headshot session and those upcoming auditions.
Blue -from navy to turquoise - is a versatile color. Blues are are complementary to blue and brown eyes and brunette hair. Teal, which is a blue-green color, is a great complement to red hair.
For those with gray hair try rich blues, greens, and purples.
Blue is also a good option for blondes, although purple compliments their hair color best. Green eyes are complimented best with all shades of green.
"I only wear black" (Guilty of that myself!)
Black is a strong color and it's best when you need a direct look. I recommend having at least one headshot in a plain black top and it works especially well if you want to get across a strong, dark, or confident casting type.
When in doubt, pick a color from the Jewel color palette
Things to avoid in general, but especially for Theatrical Headshots:
Busy patterns (floral, asymmetrical lines, etc), silky or metallic (shiny) fabrics, avoid velvet, ruffles and busy necklines, deep necklines, off shoulder blouses, bulky clothes (heavy sweaters and ill fitting tops), and my least favorite...wrinkly clothes!
The best thing you can do to avoid regrets at the photoshoot is to try on your clothes days before your photoshoot to make sure you like the way you look, and that your wardrobe fits well and is wrinkle-free.