Portfolio Tips- Part one

Your portfolio is your visual resume. Here are some tips about getting yours into shape.
Presentation. Your portfolio should be organized and visually appealing. Loose photos, cut up contact sheets, loose slides, torn or bent photos, and a delapidated case are signs of a poor portfolio presentation. Just as an accountant wouldn’t present his resume on a crumpled piece of paper, you shouldn’t have a sloppy portfolio. Your portfolio represents you; make it a lasting, positive impression.

Number of Photos. Your portfolio (or “book” as it is sometimes called) should have between 6 and 20 shots of you or work you are in. There should be a variety of poses and a combination of headshots, half body shots, and full body shots. 

Kinds of Photos. A high quality headshot is a must. After you get some experience, you should have a couple different headshots showing different hairstyles and makeup looks. Your book should also contain shots of you showing the kinds of work you want to do. If you want to be a swim wear model, have swim wear shots, not high fashion, in your book. Versatility is good but don’t get caught up in trying to be everything. Stick to what you are suited for and are interested in.

Sizes of Photos. Models should have 11×14 cases with either 8×10 or 11×14 photos. Actors should have 8×10 cases with 8×10 photos. Most serious models don’t use 5×7′s or smaller in their books.

Tear Sheets. Experienced models put tear sheets (samples from the work they have done) in their books to show prospective clients; 1) that they have experience, and 2) that they have proven to be marketable for certain looks and uses. Inexperienced models have shots of themselves showing the types of work they are capable of and interested in doing.