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Making the Best Acting Portfolio
16-01-2019 Posted by Ingrid Sanghee Edwards in Other

In order to be a professional actor, you have got to have a high definition, great quality acting portfolio. This portfolio visually introduces you and explains your skills that can sit your cute little booty in front of all the best casting directors. First impressions are some of the most important or memorable experiences, so if you’re going to put yourself out there, then do it right.

The Acting Portfolio: Headshot, Photos, CV, Website, Demo Reel, Presentation

In order to be a professional actor, one must have a high definition, great quality acting portfolio.

Think of your portfolio as a visual representation that brings you and your acting experience to life.


Headshot & Photos

A great headshot is what can make or break landing a gig in the acting world, and a mix of other photos will show more specifications about... well… YOU.  You WILL NOT get calls for auditions without a headshot and a good set of professional photos.  Take time to look into professional photographers or someone with a great camera and a creative eye to make photos professional enought to be in your portfolio.  Other photo examples that you can have in your port are: half body (waist up) full body (head to toe), a variety of clothing looks (business, evening, bathing suit etc. depending on the jobs you would like to get), as well as facial expressions (smiling, angry, laughing etc).  Furthermore, (if you have) you will want to add professional photos from different aspects of your acting experience which shows that you are hirable while also adding depth to your portfolio.

Overall make sure your headshot and photographs are not too close up or too far away, professional, clear, crisp, well sized and high-quality.

Resume or CV

It is an obvious fact that if you want any work in today's day and age you need to have a resume or curriculum vitae depending on if you are in the USA or the EU.  A resume/cv gives you a way to highlight specific details about the roles you've had and your past experience. It's your chance to point out certain skills, types of roles, training and other details that might help you attain your dream acting gig.  Think of it as one of your masterpieces. 

Make sure to remember to keep your descriptions short and use the most exciting information to grab the reader's attention and deliver details quickly.

The organization of your document is also important.  For instance, if you're doing different types of acting, then organization by type can be appropriate.  That means a section for commercials, presenting and feature films could be a nice way to organize.

Utilizing a “Special skills” section is a great way to make sure that you can stand out from the crowd.  Many actors include languages, dialects, special talents or skills.

Lastly, honesty is the most important part of the resume and cv writing.  It a world full of “fake-it-till-you-make-it” type of game players, casting directors and clients can see straight through this.  Stay genuine, modest, and keep it real…..>>insert peace sign here<<.



Having a website with your portfolio and your resume/cv online keeps you up to date, however, if you don't have the budget to hire a designer for your website, you can use drop-and-drag website builders that make it easy and in some cases, an Instagram or Facebook page is better than nothing. Services such as WordPress start free and can be a good way to put yourself out there in a professional way, you can furthermore create a business card linking your


Demo Reel

A demo real is another key element in creating a kick-ass mind-blowing acting portfolio that defines an actors professionalism and shows them in action.  If you have been fortunate enough to have at least 3-5 experiences or past jobs where you are able to obtain and publicly use the imagery, then you have what it takes to create a demo reel. Only include high-quality work that you're proud to show off.  On one hand, it is best to understand editing yourself so that you can change and add or subtract examples as they come, however for the not so tech savvy or for those short on time, there are many professional video editors and agencies that offer these skills for a variety of prices per hour.

Lastly, people in the business are very busy people.  Casting directors cringe at the thought of having to watch 5-10 minutes just to try and figure out who you are or can be, and in some cases, they will pass over your demo reel if they see it goes over 3 minutes.  Your reel should be no more than three minutes long with 3-5 different clips to show your range.  Examples that show your versatility, self-confidence and presence are the best bets when making a professional demo reel.



There may be instances where it will benefit you to have traditional print copies of your headshot and acting resume.  The standard method is to print your resume on the back side of your headshot and include all the necessary information (like what you would put at the top of our resume or CV)

Including your name, contact information and website if you have one. This will make you easy to find and contact when you make your big break.


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