Archive for September, 2009

Sep 18 – Just Shoot Me.

Posted in Acting, actor, Art, Theatre with tags , , , on September 18, 2009 by actingchick

p_photographer

So I had my first casting call today.  Not for a film, not for a play, but for a photo shoot for print and web media for an unnamed pharmaceutical company.

I saw the audition notice and saw that I fit one of the categories of people they were looking for.  Now that I actually have my headshots, I could easily email the JPGs over, which is what I did.  They were looking for the following types:

People with physical disabilities, Native Americans, and LBGT youth and middle aged couples.    They were looking for people to be doctors, nurses, etc, of any race and gender.

So I thought I had two chances.  I could be a doctor.  I mean I work in a hospital, even if my job consists entirely of putting numbers into spreadsheets.  And I also qualified under the LBGT, and since they were looking for couples, I noted in my email, that I have a girlfriend and I’d be happy to bring her along.

I was happy when the next day I got an email, saying come on down to the casting, and bring your squeeze.  How exciting.  I didn’t know what to expect, but I figured I’d at least had one photoshoot experience, my headshots, and how different could it be.

The day of, I picked out what I thought were hip middle-aged lesbian clothes to wear.  And told my girlie to attire herself similarly.  Now I should mention neither of us are fashion mavens, in fact the opposite, but I think we did OK.  I was a little worried, because my girlfriend looked cuter than me.  What if they want her to be the doctor?

Anyway we get there, feeling a little unsure what to do, but the company doing the photography runs like a well-oiled machine.  We are waved in and told to sit down in some rows of chairs they have set up on one side of the room.  The other side of the room is blocked by dividers, but the flashing lights coming through the cracks indicate where the photographs are being snapped.

I scope the competition.  So far no other obvious lesbian couples.  That’s good, maybe there won’t be to many to compete against.  We get waved up to the table to check in.

It turns out to be the guy who I emailed in the first place, and who said to come on down.  He was gay.  In fact it seemed like almost everyone working there was gay.  I try to be friendly and charming to cover up my nervousness. We give our names, addresses, and the like, and then sit back down.

A fashionable young man with cool glasses waves me up.  He has a white board and has me write my name on it. We wait a bit until the previous person is done with the photographer.  Then he escorts me and my girlfriend into the back to meet the photographer.

The photographer is also a fashionably dressed man, who warmly introduces himself to me, and shakes my hand.  He then asks me to stand back.  I look down and see an “x” taped on the floor.  I say, do you want me on the x? and he says, oh you can see that? It was small and put on with clear tape.

The white board is put into my hands and a picture is snapped.  Then he takes a closeup of my face, then he has me turn to the side. Glasses on. Click. Glasses off.  Click.  Then he says 3/4 turn. Click.

Then he asks me to move my head back.  I move it what I think is back, but that’s apparently not the right way, so I try another way.  What he meant was to rotate my head towards him, but his description, and my comprehension of that movement weren’t synching up.  I felt like a little bit of a dork, when I figured it out, but oh well.  Click. Body shot. Click.

Then it was my girlfriends turn.  Same routine, but they had her put her hand on her hip in a few shots.  I thought, hey, I didn’t have to put my hand on my hip, what does that mean? Do they like her better?

Then we got to do a few shots together. That was fun.  i would like to have seen them, but the monitor was facing away from us.  Click, click, click.  It was over.

I made sure to thank everyone, the photographer, and the person who checked us in.   And out the door we headed.

If we are going to hear anything it should be by the end of next week.  I think we have an OK chance.  I’ll think it is funny, if my girlfriend got a spot and I didn’t.  Ha ha. Sigh.

Did I mention that this pays really well? I guess that’s because they are paying us not just for the actual shoot, but for the right to use our images on the company pamphlets, website and advertisements.

Anyway, I guess we just have to wait and see now.

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Sep 7 – Heads up.

Posted in Acting, actor, Art, Theatre with tags , , , , on September 7, 2009 by actingchick

So things are warming up a little in the acting world.  Revving back up after taking some downtime after the Meisner class at Freehold.  I’ve gotten my headshots, I’ve gotten a part in a short film that a fellow Meisnerite is doing, and I’m working on a project with another fellow Meisner classmate.  So there are irons in the fire.

The big thing I wanted to do was get my headshots. I felt like I was off the hook until then.  I didn’t have to go out into the big scary world and audition, and get rejected, since you need headshots (or should have them so you don’t look unprofessional) to audition.

I had been searching the web looking for people, and I ended up picking Mark Brennan.  He is up in Vancouver, BC, and I was willing to drive up, but then I found out that he comes down to Seattle once a month to take people’s pictures, so that made it even easier.  Although I was a little disappointed that I didn’t have a reason to visit Vancouver.

Why Mark Brennan, and not someone local?  I don’t know.  I just like the way his photos captured people, especially the eyes.  Check out his website and see what you think.

To get ready for the photos, I had to get some new clothes.  I’m am a, um, how shall we say, fashion failure, and I’m a butch dyke at heart.  But I figured that I needed some girly clothes, since there are more regular girl parts out there than butch lesbian trucker parts.  I took one of my friends who actually has a sense of fashion and taste, and she helped me pick out clothes, most of which didn’t make it in the photo shoot, but I have them for auditions now.

I kept saying to myself as she would hand me something, I wouldn’t wear that.  But then I thought that is like an actor saying, but my character wouldn’t do that.   If the part (and the director) calls for it, you have to make it work. So I tried them on and apparently I looked good even though I felt uncomfortable and dorky.  Fish out of water.

The shoot day arrived.  Mark Brennan and his make-up person, whose name I have sadly forgotten, were really great.  I was tired that day because I had just finished the Danskin triathlon about two hours before.  He would have me stand different ways, and then give me cues, such as, I’ve just walked in the room, and you are really happy to see me, or, you are a bitch, and you don’t care if firing me ruins my life, in fact you enjoy it.

There was the technical part of being in the right position.  He would have me lean forward or tilt my head a certain way, and then add in the emotions as he cued me.  He also just talked to me, trying to get me relaxed.  I was actually feeling pretty relaxed at the beginning since I was still zoned out from the triathlon.  After awhile of standing there my shoulders and neck tightened up (from the swim I think), and he’d be like ok, relax your shoulders.  And I’m thinking, I can’t, they won’t go down.

We finished up the shoot, and I waited for him to send me the photos, so I could pick which ones I wanted to use.   He took about 100 photos, picked out his favorites, his seconds favorites, and then sent the rest.  Now my job was to pick the two I liked and he would color correct and touch them up for me.

I have to say, I was hoping for miracles.  I’m not bad looking, I think I’m nicely average, but I was hoping to look like a movie star, but instead I just looked like myself, with makeup and some fancier clothes on than I normally wear.  They always say your headshot should look like you, and not someone else, so in that respect they succeed rather well.  I was just hoping for more, but I guess that’s my baggage.

I narrowed down the choices to about eight, which was hard.  Then I posted those up on my facebook page and let people vote.  I’ve posted the results below.

I must say that putting my pictures up on my blog makes me feel a little exposed, since it is nice to hang out and write anonymously to the three or four people who actually stumble across this blog and read it.  But I figured I have to get used to putting myself out there.  I’m an actor after all.  People are supposed to see me.