How to Take a Central Casting Profile Photo

NOVEMBER 6, 2023
Examples of Central Casting profile photos.

Profile photos are one of the main tools Casting Directors use when determining the types of roles you can portray. Having clear, well-lit, and well-framed photos that accurately reflect your current look is key to being successful with Central Casting. This guide will help you take the perfect photos to add to your online profile.

Why profile photos are important

Background Actors are cast based on their appearance and their ability to portray a role. That’s why it’s extremely important that your profile photos always reflect your current look. Adding additional photos to your profile is another great way to show Casting Directors the different types of looks you can portray and the unique wardrobe you own.

How to take a profile photo

Your profile should always have a current headshot and full body shot. When we say headshot at Central Casting, we don’t mean professional photos. These are often retouched and altered and cannot be used when considering you for background work. Your photos do not need to be taken professionally, but these guidelines will help you take great photos that will help our Casting Directors when booking their shows and will look professional when production sees them during the casting process.


Have a friend or family member take your photo in portrait (vertical) orientation so you’re framed straight on, head to mid-torso with your shoulders at the edges of the frame.

Example of Central Casting headshot.
Casting Director Sara V. posing for a headshot

Full body shots

Have a friend or family member take your photo in portrait (vertical) orientation so you’re framed straight on, head-to-toe taking up the majority of the frame.

Example of Central Casting full body shot.
Casting Director Sara V. posing for a full body shot

Photo do’s

  • Take your photo against a white or solid background free from clutter and busy patterns. Nothing in the background should distract from you.
  • Photos should be well-lit and in focus so your face is clearly visible.
  • Wear your hair down so Casting Directors can clearly see your hair length. Hair length is used often during casting, especially for period roles and when casting doubles.
  • Only photos that reflect your current appearance should be added to your profile. Please remove any outdated photos that no longer reflect how you look right now.

Photo don’ts

  • Photos should not include other people. Remember, the purpose of your profile photos is so our Casting Directors can determine the types of roles you can portray; they will not guess which person in the photo is you.
  • Do not wear hats, sunglasses, or anything that will obscure your appearance. Casting Directors need to clearly see your face.
  • Photos should not be edited or filtered. When you’re cast based off the look in your photo, you will be expected to show up to set with that look. Altered photos cannot be used when considering you for background work.

Uploading profile photos

Photos can be uploaded to the “Photographs” section of your online profile. After uploading a photo, you must choose a slot (category) for your picture. You do not need a photo for every slot, these are just options for different ways to classify your pictures.

When adding photos to your profile, quality over quantity is key. Too many photos only clutters your profile and makes it harder to find the photo needed to consider you for a role. Casting Directors recommend:

  • A current headshot and full body shot
  • A casual, business, and formal look
  • 1-2 unique looks, like a uniform you own or a period role you can portray

Don’t forget to update your photos any time your look changes. To learn more about how photos are used in the casting process, check out our guides Do’s and Don’ts for Submitting Photos to Casting Directors and 5 Things to Consider When Adding Additional Photos.

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By Meghan Dubitsky

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