From New York to LA: The Guide to Becoming an Actress


a woman sitting in a red chair

Acting is both a craft and a business that requires talent, know-how, and legwork. An actress should become familiar with the ins and outs of the industry, understand how it works, and what individuals are involved. Read books about the acting industry, marketing, talent agents, and acting technique and theory. While an actress may have natural talent, acting is a specialized skill that needs to be nurtured through training.

Acting classes, theater programs, and higher education are all ways for an actress to hone her craft and learn the fundamentals of a successful performance. Here is the guide outlining the three things every actress from New York to LA needs to have prepared: headshots, a resume, and a demo reel.


A headshot is the first impression a casting director gets of an actress. Seek the right headshot photographer who knows how to create a relaxed environment and understands how to capture the true essence of the subject. Without the right creative synergy between a photographer and an actress, the photoshoot could be disastrous. An actress should have a few outfits chosen to dress for her character-type for the photoshoot. Dress presentably in clothing that is neither flashy nor revealing, and be sure to wear clean, wrinkle-free garments. Makeup should be natural-looking; as a rule for headshots, less is more.

Pose naturally for headshots with an engaged facial and expressive eyes. Headshots shouldn’t feel like an actress is acting for the camera. Keep the shoulders level, the hands away from the face, and keep the face more or less centered. Think of posing for a headshot as posing during a fun and engaging conversation.

Presenting an attractive and healthy appearance is essential for an actress. Having an attractive smile is best achieved with routine dental services. The dentists at Glad Dental help patients with cosmetic issues like missing or broken teeth, gaps in the teeth, and bad breath. Dental implants help create an attractive smile by replacing missing teeth and eliminating gaps. Glad Dental has a team of insurance specialists and treatment plan coordinators who can maximize insurance coverage to minimize out of pocket costs for patients.

Acting Resume

An acting resume should be clear, concise, and easy to read. An actress needs to state her name, list a working phone number, provide an email address, and note her Union status on the resume. Include physical attributes depending on who and what role the audition is for (typically film productions). Do include links to a personal website, demo reels, or an IMDb page, but keep the amount of links simple. An acting resume should appear professional and clean.

Actual acting experience is usually listed by categories: film/tv, commercials/industrials, broadway, national tours, regional theater, academic theater, training/degrees, and special skills. Every bit of experience is important for a budding actress to note. Any listed credits should mention titles, roles, directors, and production organizations.

Demo Reel

A demo reel is a series of clips from on-screen acting or footage of an audition-specific monologue that is watched by casting directors. This is an actress’s chance to showcase her best performances and give an idea of her screen presence. Casting directors use demo reels to see what professional work an actress has done and to gauge acting skills. Demo reels are typically two minutes long and consist of 20-30 second long clips.

As with headshots, it’s important to film a professional-quality demo reel by working with a compatible videographer. Los Angeles videography company, Coldea Productions, is a team of marketing visual content creators who provide custom photos and video projects. Their creative services are designed to help clients establish successful branding and launch a creative journey based on individual needs. Whatever the creative journey, Coldea Productions can bring any story to life.

image/svg+xmlLayer 1

Contact Us