4 Headshot Myths You Can Discard Today

March 15, 2024

It’s Anthony Mongiello again and today I am here to challenge some common misconceptions about headshots that might be holding you back from booking your next big gig. As a Los Angeles-based professional headshot photographer with years of experience under my belt, I’ve seen it all. So, get ready to toss aside these 4 outdated beliefs that could be stopping your career growth.

Myth #1: “You Should Always Smile in Your Headshots”

Let me set the record straight: while a smile can convey approachability, it’s not always necessary or appropriate for every role. There’s a common misconception that you should always plaster on a big grin for your headshots, but that’s simply not true. Depending on the type of roles you’re pursuing, a serious expression might be more appropriate. Casting directors want to see versatility, so feel free to mix it up and experiment with different facial expressions. An effective headshot is one that captures the character you’re portraying, whether that requires a smile, a smirk, or a more neutral expression.

Myth #2: “You Can DIY Your Headshots with a Smartphone”

While smartphone cameras have come a long way in terms of quality, they still can’t compete with the professional equipment and expertise of a seasoned headshot photographer. There’s a belief that you can save money by taking your own headshots with your smartphone, but this often results in images that fail to impress casting directors.

Professional headshots require careful consideration of lighting, composition, and posing, which are skills that most amateurs simply don’t possess. By trying to DIY your headshots, you run the risk of coming across as unprofessional and amateurish, which can hurt your chances of landing auditions. Invest in yourself and your career by hiring a professional headshot photographer who knows how to showcase your unique talents and personality in the best possible light.

Myth #3: “One Headshot Fits All Auditions”

This is another point I see when people are trying to save some money, but it’s important to understand that there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to headshots. Each audition and role is unique, and your headshot should reflect that. Gone are the days of using the same generic headshot for every audition.

Whether you’re going for a comedic role, a dramatic part, or something in between, your headshot should be tailored to the specific requirements of the role. That means experimenting with different looks, expressions, and wardrobe choices to send the right vibe for each audition. By having a variety of headshots at your disposal, you’ll increase your chances of catching the eye of casting directors and landing the roles you desire.

Myth #4: “Natural Lighting Is Always Better Than Studio Lighting”

Natural lighting can indeed produce beautiful results in most situations, but it’s not always the best option for headshot photography. There’s a misconception among people that natural lighting is superior to studio lighting because it’s more “authentic” or “flattering.” However, the truth is that natural lighting can be unpredictable and inconsistent, depending on factors like weather, time of day, and location. On the other hand, studio lighting provides complete control over the lighting environment, allowing the photographer to create flattering and consistent results regardless of external conditions.


Now that we’ve debunked these three headshot myths, it’s time to take action and invest in professional headshots that truly represent you as a performer. Remember, your headshots are your calling card in the entertainment industry, so it’s worth the investment to ensure they’re top-notch.

If you’re ready to elevate your career with stunning headshots that make you stand out from the crowd, then look no further than Anthony Mongiello Photography. With my expertise and passion for capturing authentic and compelling images, I’ll help you take your career to new heights. Don’t let myths hold you back—let your headshots speak volumes about your talent. Schedule your session today and let’s create headshots that make casting directors take notice!

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