How to Format a Headshot on Photoshop

by Filonia LeChat

Instead of getting the proverbial foot in the door, a properly formatted headshot can get your head -- and your entire self -- in the door in front of a casting agent or director. While technically anything from an instant snapshot to a paper print out can be a headshot, good headshots provide everything someone needs to know about you instantly. Use Adobe Photoshop to format a regular close-up picture of yourself into an attention-grabbing headshot, where your acting and contact details will be at the right fingertips at the right time.

Step 1

Start Photoshop, and click the "File" menu, then click "Open." Browse to the headshot image to format and double-click the name of the file.

Step 2

Click the "Image" menu, and select "Image Size."

Step 3

Click a check mark into the "Constrain Proportions" box.

Step 4

Enter "11" into the "Height" box of the "Document Size" section on the "Image Size" window. The "Width" box will auto-adjust as Photoshop prevents it from becoming distorted. Note that it is always preferred to reduce a headshot -- such as going from an 11 in. by 17 in. image to 8.5 in. to 11 in. for example -- so the image does not get distorted. Never format an image larger, or you could experience pixilation.

Step 5

Click the "OK" button, and the headshot resizes to copy-page size.

Step 6

Double-click the "Color Picker" at the bottom of the "Tools" pane. Click black or white, whichever will look the best on the canvas surrounding the headshot. Click "OK." Click the "Paint Bucket" tool. Click the Photoshop canvas behind the headshot, filling it in with background color. Skip this step if your resizing of the headshot image fit the canvas and didn't leave any blank areas.

Step 7

Click the "T" tool to open the "Type" toolbar. Choose a font, such as an easy to read Arial Bold, a text size and a text color. Choose black or white, whichever will show up the clearest against the bottom of the headshot.

Step 8

Click the bottom of the headshot, then type your name. Type additional details such as agency name, agent phone number, website, height and weight and last roles played.

Click the "File" menu. Click "Save As," enter a new name in the "File name" box and click the "Save" button.


About the Author

Fionia LeChat is a technical writer whose major skill sets include the MS Office Suite (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Publisher), Photoshop, Paint, desktop publishing, design and graphics. LeChat has a Master of Science in technical writing, a Master of Arts in public relations and communications and a Bachelor of Arts in writing/English.

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