An important aspect of a self tape is to not just know your character, but also get
your framing and technical bits up to scratch.
A couple of pointers:
- Framing – We find the best framing to be from just below the shoulders to
top of the head (mid shot)
- Be sure your backdrop fits the scene of the character. If you are outside, as much as possible, film it outside. The most important thing to remember is does the back drop feed your character?
- If you are filming on an iphone DO NOT shoot it vertically. Always horizontal!
- Make sure the light is in front of you not behind. In other words never shoot with window behind you.
- If you are using a sheet as a backdrop always be sure it is ironed. Nothing more distracting than a wrinkly sheet!
- Slate – When you slate your self tape be sure it is not 3 years old showing you with short hair. Be sure to use the same slate for all your self tapes so there is consistency which shows your brand. Above all be sure it is establishing you as a professional..
- Costume – Does it feed the character? And don’t be afraid to show skin. But not too much!
- Make it easy for the Decision Makers by labeling your self tapes clearly. Your name, your agent and contact details, the name of the project and the role.
- Be mindful of where you place your reader. Not too close to the camera so that they are louder than you.
- Remember your eyes are your expression. Make sure we see your eyeballs. Lead with your eyes.
- This is a screen test not to test your ability, but to test your suitability. Therefore performance does not have to be perfect.
- Always be familiar with the script so that if you do forget your lines, you always stay in character by improvising until the lines come. Sometimes it is OK to hold the side but always check to be sure.
The most important aspect of a self tape or an audition in the room is to be
Our Creating Compelling Characters starts Jan 14th.