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Celebrity Photographer Reveals Secrets for the Perfect Headshot

New York based photographer Barry Morgenstein has been snapping celebs since 1987. His most notable clients include Meryl Streep, Robert DeNiro, Robin Williams and Olympia Dukakis. He has even built a huge newscaster following over the years, shooting the familiar faces of both local and national news including FOX news anchor Megyn Kelly and veteran journalist Jane Pauley. “I shoot a lot of news anchors, TV hosts and actors, and they all have different needs”, says Morgenstein.

Over two decades of working with a variety of talent, Morgenstein shares some insider tips for those looking to make their head shot stand out to those doing the hiring.

“If you’re in news the key is to look sophisticated but not too uptight”, says Morgenstein.

Here are the top FIVE things newscasters should know before the photo shoot:

  • Stick to bold colors. Blue and red are the most popular
  • AVOID white, yellow, pink or grey
  • Always have two different looks
  • A standard promotional shot (i.e. arms crossed, hands on hips)
  • A close-up
  • Male broadcasters should wear a suit and tie
  • Make-up should be a bit heavier than normal. Accent eyes and lips.

Morgenstein recommends hiring a professional hair and make-up artist the day of the shoot. Many photographers will offer that option to their clients as Morgenstein does. If you’re an actor or TV host, Morgenstein says you can be a bit freer with your clothing and posing choices.

Here are the top FIVE things actors and TV hosts should know before the photo shoot:

  • Act natural- no fake smiles
  • Let your personality shine through
  • Shoot at least two different looks; a close-up and a three quarter shot if you’re fit and want to show off your physique
  • Dress in simple, solid, bold colors. Black is also a nice, clean color choice
  • Men can wear a fitted t-shirt or sport jacket

“Just look relaxed”, says Morgenstein. That comes from feeling comfortable with your photographer, which Morgenstein says is essential to getting that perfect shot. “If the actor doesn’t feel comfortable and isn’t showing their true self, then I’m not doing my job.” For those pure moments, Morgenstein even adds a special bonus for his clients. Candid photographs. “As the talent is getting prepped for the shoot, and even at times throughout, I sneak some cool candid shots to capture the real personality of my client”, says Morgenstein.

As an actor, TV host or broadcaster, having professional candid shots in your marketing arsenal allows you to have a leg up on the competition. Performers can post them on their website and social media. Choosing a head shot photographer is a big decision, especially since the shoot and prints can cost hundreds of dollars, so here are a few things to consider before you commit to any photographer.

  • Research. Look at testimonials and reviews
  • Check the professional’s resume and experience
  • Meet with them. You must feel comfortable with this person in order to bring
  • out your best
  • Ask if they have any upcoming promotions or discounts you can take advantage of

Remember, as a performer it’s your job to do your homework on those you hire, be smart with your clothing choices and most of all have fun the day of the shoot!

For more information on Barry Morgenstein Photography CLICK HERE.