Sunday, February 7, 2010

What's My Type?

So I'm continuing some of my acting biz research, reading Bonnie Gillespie's Self Management for Actors. Love, by the way. Exceedingly well written, almost conversational, never dry, and really good, sound advice with great resources listed that sound more like helpful suggestions than shameless endorsement. She emphasizes the importance of "type" and knowing what other people might see you as.

In a perfect world, I would be an ingenue, comedic/dramatic, superwoman (ok, Wonder Woman!) type with strength, wit, and boundless beauty. It is not a perfect world, so I'm taking a look at my headshot and deciding what I think it looks like.

I'm trying to be honest with myself, please indulge me.

This particular photo could be either a leading lady or the "best friend." Five adjectives to describe the person in the picture? Friendly, Witty, Professional, Warm, Naive. Not sure anymore if that's what I want in a character breakdown. At the time this photo was taken, I was entering the mid-Atlantic market, one where a lot of work was industrials, where you need to look like you have some kind of credibility. Moving to LA, I'm thinking I need something a little sexier. I'm definitely getting new headshots done when I get out there, my hair is different, and I just want a new feel all together.

So, if I had to write a character breakdown for the roles I want to play in a perfect world? This would be it:
Caucasion Female, Age 22-28; Lead character, she's strong-willed and comfortable with her sexuality. She's smart, with a sensitivity for the pain of others. She has an exterior with a lot of bravado, but without being flinty. Inside, she's confused about what she wants from life, and seeks approval.

Is that too much like my actual personality? I don't know. Can these characteristics be shown in a photo that will translate to casting directors? Maybe. We'll see how well we can do, but I do know I want a more pensive expression. I'll have to work on it though in front of a mirror because when I try to do "non-smiling" in photos it comes off really weird and kind of vapid. I also want the new photo to emphasize my eyes a little more, I think they're my best feature.


  1. Yes, get new photos. I love ya, but that's not a great photo. I definitely think something younger, like a more 'hip' top, would work better for LA. You come across to me in real life (not in this photo) as a quirky comedic leading lady. You might put the hair up as well - when it's bushing out to both sides like in this pic, it makes you look bigger than you actually are. You actually are prettier in real life than this photo makes you look.

    Is that helpful at all, or do I just sound like an idiot?:-)

    If you don't, you should totally read Bonnie's column and blog, and follow her two Twitter feeds:

    The Actors Voice:
    BonBlogs...a work in progress:


    Break a leg in LA!

  2. Thanks for the shout-out. :) Definitely looking forward to learning how you figure out your type. I'm definitely not seeing all the things you've listed, when I look at that headshot. So, good for you, looking to bring it all together. It'll only help.

    Good luck on your journey!