James Mason, is an Australian actor known for his 1000+ episodes on the long running Aussie soap Neighbors.

He wanted new headshots as he was heading off to L.A for pilot season.

We discussed options before the shoot and James sent me a bunch of reference pics that were (mostly moody B&W’s) in order to focus in on what we were going to create on the day.

 

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We spoke about eye-lines, classic film grammar, and my general philosophy on headshots.

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Jaw-lines and engagement through the eyes got particular attention during our discussion. As did the notion of branding — what or how James wanted to present himself as.

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And we even did some improved scenes from our favorite movies. For instance, in the above image James is doing Bill Murray from Lost in Translation (hence the finger gesture). Can you tell which scene it is?

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James was, smartly I will add, after a variety of looks. Not in terms of clothing because to be frank what casting directors and directors are looking for are people, not clothes. Seriously… do not waste too much of your time and effort on wardbrode for actors headshots. Too much makeup makes me wonder what’s going on under it, and bright wardrobe does little more than distract the viewer from the most important thing in the image…you!

Keep it simple. Always keep it simple.

So we did a series of improved poses from the comedic to the “Hollywood” leading man.

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And we had a fun time getting there albeit with some laughing along the way.

James in now in LA and I am looking forward to hearing good news from him.