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Session Tips

Pete Bartlett Colour Actor Headshot Photography



Getting you prepared:

Once you’ve made your booking and we’ve discussed any specific requirements, I email out some homework for you to think about prior to the shoot.

Although I’ll guide you and direct you during the shoot, it’s great for you to have thought through a few scenarios before you arrive. There’s nothing like feeling prepared, it shows in the photos!

As well as the homework, I email out my thoughts on what clothes are best for headshots: which necklines frame the face best, which colours work best etc. Plus some ideas about hair and make-up.

I will also make myself available for any questions which might come up as the shoot approaches.

Actor Headshot Session Tips by Pete Bartlett


The Shoot Itself:

First things first, a cup of tea and chat is the best way to start I find. It gives us a chance to get to know each other, discuss any specific requirements you might have, get rid of any baggage from previous headshot shoots, and for us to relax before the shoot starts.

I split a session into 4 sections: outside shots, half in/half out, natural light in the studio, and then studio lit shots.This is what that looks like:

Actor Headshot Session Tips by Pete Bartlett

You’ll see from my portfolio that I shoot quite a broad range of styles and in doing so I try to give you as much choice as possible once you get the pictures back. It’s the digital age and the old days of one 10×8 print doing the rounds are pretty much over. On most casting sites, including Spotlight, there are opportunities to put up multiple pictures of yourself so it’s a good to show yourself in a few different lights, each reflecting a different side of your talent.

I will direct you once you’re in front of the camera; it’s teamwork all the way and we’re working together to get the best image possible. People find the session fun and that reflects in the results.

During the shoot they’ll be time to change tops, men to shave, and women to straighten or curl hair etc. as required.


Actor Headshot Session Tips by Pete Bartlett

After the Session:

I upload the images (at least 150) to an online gallery the same day as the shoot for both you and your agent deliberate over.

You then make your choices. These are sent to my retoucher who’ll get them ready for launch. Simple!




Once you’ve had a chance to make your choices, you email me the file numbers of the 2 final shots you want retouched (any extra and there’s a £17 charge per shot). Differently to a lot of headshots photographers I don’t do the retouching myself. I send them to a specialist retoucher.  Believe me, a specialist retoucher is in a different league to a photographer/retoucher, that’s my experience. The pictures look immaculate every time. They never look retouched just like you but on your very best day ever!

To find out what retouching entails click here: “Retouching – What’s it all about?“.

Actor Headshot Session Tips by Pete Bartlett
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