Tag Archives: Child Headshots

Kids Headshots Los Angeles











Headshots for Kids

A couple weeks ago, we posted a blog on kids headshots featuring our favorites from Natalie’s shoot….but, NOW her Agency Choices have come in & these are the finished product after removing a few stray hairs & cropping for Internet Casting.  Natalie came to us from a pretty big & well known commercial agency, so we knew they’d appreciate some variety.  Fortunately, Natalie has a great look for camera, since she can sort of morph into so many character types within an instant.  With that long vibrant red hair & piercing blue eyes, we knew we could create several options for her reps.  Below are some tricks that we used to change up the images as we shot – they’re simple concepts that you see used all over film & television….and there’s no reason you can’t use them too!

Long Hair Tricks for Kids Headshots

When you have long hair to work with, remember that you have SO many options at your disposal.  Notice above, the pics with straight hair tucked behind the ears….immediate “Good Kid / Teachers Pet”  So simple!  Then take a look at the green top images – the surfer girl waves give her that “All-American Kid” look that’s so so popular.  For the blue crushed velvet top, we started with fresh curls & pulled them forward on one side to show off all of her thick amazing hair – these felt very “Period Piece” to me & obviously Natalie would be amazing cast in one of those “Sense & Sensibility” type roles 🙂  For the shots in the turquoise tee we loosened up the curls to give her a totally girly “Disney” look.  For the black tank top, we brushed our fingers through the curls to make a more relaxed casual look & get a perfect serious “Theatrical” shot.  These tricks work not only for kids headshots, but also for grown ups 🙂

If you have any QUESTIONS please feel free to contact us through our contact form & we’ll be happy to help.  For more examples of KIDS HEADSHOTS IN LOS ANGELES visit our portfolio and our FACEBOOK page.

Posted in Kids Headshots LA Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Kids Headshots LA





Briana’s Agent Choices are IN!

We just finished up some final touches on Briana S.’s agent favorites.  So, these will be the images she uploads to sites like Actors Access, LA Casting & the kid on the block, Casting Frontier.

Acting Classes for Kids

Briana is in a really interesting age for casting – she’s still in her early teens, which means the other actors in her age range are starting to to develop some serious technique & on-camera skills.  For kids 10 years & under, casting is often more concerned with the child’s look, their raw talent & their ability to take direction.  Most young kids haven’t had a ton of acting coaching or experience, so everyone’s on pretty equal footing.  HOWEVER, when kids start to hit the 13 & 14 year age range, if they’re serious about acting, they really should start taking a weekly class or at least get a couple on-camera sessions with a coach a couple times a month.  Since they’ll be going up against kids who HAVE had some training, getting them to know the basics, such as “eye lines” for camera, how to hit a mark, & how to properly highlight & deconstruct their sides is pretty important.  Most parents don’t have the time (or money) to spend on a ton of coaching & classes – but, making sure your child has at least the basics gives them a fighting chance – and helps ensure they won’t lose a role over something silly like basic audition etiquette.  Another pitfall to watch out for, however, is not knowing what kind of class you’re putting them in. Is it more along the lines of a theatre/drama type class than one that specifically prepares them for on-camera acting technique?   If your child is very shy & could use some help opening up in social situations, or if your child is more interested in community theatre, then the theatre/drama class is PERFECT.  However, these classes aren’t going to help much if what your kid needs is some basic film/tv skills to nail an audition & get the role.

We’ll be posting on our favorite acting teachers in upcoming blogs, and we’d love to hear your ideas & comments on your favorite acting classes & coaches!

View more examples of our kids headshots

View more examples of our adult actor headshots

“Like” us on facebook to get weekly photo updates featuring our 2013 HS Senior Pictures & of course plenty of LA Actor Headshots…..

Posted in Headshots for Actors, Kids Headshots LA Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

High School Senior Pictures LA




_b0c2883__LosAngeles_Senior_Portraits_WEB   _b0c2866_LosAngeles_Senior_Portraits_WEB




Senior Pictures Los Angeles

The beauty of shooting editorial style senior pictures is that we aren’t just doing a basic portrait – we get the chance to tell a story with each image.  And each one of those stories captures a different side of our HS Senior.  Above, you’ll see 4 very distinct sides of Jameela captured in very distinctly different settings.  Our Los Angeles Warehouse Location gives us the freedom to shoot everything from industrial, to sleek/modern, to romantic, to Cosmo Girl.

Senior Pictures Los Angeles – Look #1

We started the shoot with a totally industrial feel – using the work trucks in the back of the warehouse to shoot around.  This went perfectly with Jameela’s casual plaid shirt & jeans….but, we had our makeup artist bump up the hair & makeup to give the pictures more of a “Guess Girl” feel…proving that girls can be tough & still pretty  😉

Senior Pictures Los Angeles – Look #2

Next we moved to our Cosmo Girly Girl in Hot Pink, on a white background.  We kept the hair & makeup very young & fresh and encouraged Jameela to just be silly & have fun – there’s plenty of time to do fierce….and we don’t ever want to leave out our silly side in a photoshoot!

Senior Pictures Los Angeles – Look #3

Third, we had our makeup artist give the eyes a bit more of a smokey feel so that we could head out to the train tracks.  We thought the white dress mixed with the gritty tracks would be a beautiful juxtaposition, and giving the eyes a bit of edge was a fun way to keep the shots from being overly traditional.  A nice mix almost always works out better than hitting the same notes over and over.

Senior Pictures Los Angeles – Look #4

Our last look with Jameela was our chance to show the side of her that’s becoming an adult.  The belted sweater looks like a fabulous outfit to wear on your first day interning at a fashion magazine or art gallery.  Jameela did an amazing job of being very present with the camera & letting it capture her serious side.

Senior Pictures Los Angeles INSPIRATION

If you’d like to do a shoot like the one above, begin with charting out 3 to 5 sides of YOU that you’d like to show.  Then begin putting together wardrobe that reflects those aspects.  When you arrive at your shoot, we’ll lay your things out & put together a game plan to make your dream photoshoot happen!

To stay updated on our shoots this summer in los angeles, & see more pics to inspire your shoot, “Like” us on www.Facebook.com/MaxBrandinPhotography

For more examples of SENIOR PICTURES LOS ANGELES visit our portfolio and our FACEBOOK page 🙂  And if you have any QUESTIONS please feel free to contact us through our contact form & we’ll be happy to help.  ….and remember, yearbook deadline comes before you know it…book your Senior Pictures with us today!

Posted in High School Senior Pictures | Los Angeles Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Senior Portraits Los Angeles


Being Comfortable in front of the Camera

So, you’ve got the outfits together, you’ve paired them with super cute shoes, and the perfect accessories.  That’s a lot to prepare, but there’s one more important thing to consider prepping before your Senior Pictures – your smile.  One of the scariest things about shooting with a professional photographer is the fact that you’re most likely not a pro model.  But, DON’T WORRY – it’s easy to practice & get good before your shoot.  You’ll need a camera phone & a willing friend to take the pictures.

1.  You’re gonna want to do a variety of facial expressions at your shoot:

Smirks with Attitude
Small Smiles
Devious Smiles
Romantic Gaze (off into the distance 😉
Big happy Grins
Serious Faces
“Sexy” Serious Faces
Quirky & Shy Smiles (…aw, shucks 🙂

2.  Then review your practice shots & identify what worked and what didn’t….

Here are some classic pitfalls to watch out for:

Serious Expressions can look MAD if you’re not careful.   Usually, putting just a HINT of a smile under the serious face makes it look “fierce”, as Tyra would say.

Big Smiles often look like you’re totally cray-cray.  The way to master big beautiful smiles is make sure your eyes don’t squint too much & keep the lips from pulling back too far.   We wanna see those teeth – but maybe not ALL of your teeth….hehehe.

Subtle Soft Smiles can sometimes look like you’re confused or unsure of what you’re doing.  When doing a Soft Smile, picture someone you have a crush on for the perfect subtle smile.

When you arrive at your shoot

Once you arrive for your session, just let ALL of your practice go.  If you put a tiny bit of time in you’ll be able to just be GENUINE & enjoy the shoot.  …..and regardless of whether you practice or  you’re a natural, you’re in good hands with us!!  We’ve worked with & shot hundreds of people who were brand new to the whole experience.  In fact, most of the people in our portfolio had never been in front of a professional camera for more than the occasional family photo – – – – and we think they look pretty amazing 🙂  And if you don’t believe us, just check out the pics above of actor Isabella Santana – she’s just getting started with acting & but you wouldn’t know if from these pics!


Posted in High School Senior Pictures | Thousand Oaks - Newbury Park Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Los Angeles Actor Headshots

_B0C0458_WEB   _B0C0554_WEB

Headshots LA

Get 2 looks in 1

One of the biggest issues since online casting truly took over is the demand agents put on their actors to get several looks.  Actor Headshots used to be simple….remember?  One serious.  One smiling.  Black & White.  Super Basic.  NOW, because you don’t need to get 8×10’s printed up of everything, your agent wants you to get a ton  of looks….”Professional Commercial”  “Professional Theatrical” “Girl Next Door” “Bad Ass” “Sexy” “Cute Sitcom”, “Midwestern / Country Girl”, “Quirky” ……the list goes on!   If that wasn’t enough on  your plate, now pretty much every photographer you talk to lets you know that these are all charged as separate looks….Yikes.  And you can’t blame them for needing to charge extra for what is, in essence” 2 full photoshoots.  From our perspective, a headshot session is 3 to 4 looks max.  That’s what it’s been for years.  So, when you have 8 looks, that’s double our usual work day.  ….not to mention the hours and hours afterward to process your digital negatives….phew!  It’s a fun job, but it’s still a job.  ….So, what are you supposed to do?  Spend a billion dollars every year on headshots?!  No.  There are lots of great ways to get the most out of your shoot & do so without depleting your energy by the 5th look & without depleting all the money from your bank account.

Above is an example of how we got Nikki’s Professional Theatrical AND Pro Commercial in one look.  And we did it without compromising the quality & end result of the picture.

1. Lighting is NOT the same for commercial & theatrical.  Make sure your photographer understands this & knows how to tweak light as you go to give you different vibes throughout a single look.  Above, you’ll see we switched from purely natural light to a strobe when we went from theatrical to commercial.  The strobes were set up….just not turned on….for the theatrical.  This gives us a MOODY dramatic feel.  Once the strobes were turned on, BAM!  There’s an immediate commercial, high energy feel to the image.  And not only was the light on Nikki’s face a strobe – we also had a mini strobe set up to flash on the background behind her to give a crisp white, where there had been a soft caramel faded background.

2. Wardrobe can speak volumes, even when very simple.

Theatrical Nikki is already a gorgeous & pretty sexy individual.  SO, we didn’t go over the top on her Theatrical Professional when it came to wardrdobe.  Of course, she looks like she stepped right off the set of Boston Legal where, no doubt, they’d have her in a totally hot cami with jacket over the top.  That’s great for the show – but there’s something a little “icky” about dressing TOO sexy for your headshots.  It feels like “trying too hard.”  The blue shirt is serious – but we did allow for an extra button to come undone to show off her neck & a little collarbone.

Commercial Because Nikki chose a color that would work with both theatrical AND commercial – such as a medium blue, sage green, plum, etc. – we were able to just remove the jacket, exposing MORE of the vibrant color & giving the pick a more relaxed, casual, friendly feel – which is key to a commercial “Professional” headshot.

3.  Hair is super important, of course.  By keeping the hair in the theatrical around Nikki’s face, we get a character that’s a little more “shadowy” – someone who has a secret.  Then, when we switched to commercial, we let the hair come off the face a bit – opening her up as someone who’s more fun & friendly.  It’s such a small change – but you can see what a difference it makes.


Posted in LA Actor Headshots | Los Angeles - South Bay Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

High School Senior Portraits Manhattan Beach



Senior Pictures South Bay

At Max Brandin Photography we include a family portrait mini session with 3 of our 4 Senior Portrait Session packages.  We encourage you to bring Mom, Dad, Sis, Bro, or even your boyfriend for a mini photoshoot.  We keep it simple, short & sweet – but we always get beautiful images 🙂  We suggest coordinating outfits before the day of the shoot so that everyone’s prepared & the mini shoot can go smoothly.  The pics above are a great example of what “neutrals” photograph like.  Definitely go with what best portrays the vibe & personality of YOUR family.  Some fams are bright & crazy – so, don’t be afraid of color.  Mom can wear a multi colored dress or top & Dad, Siblings & You can wear colors that compliment Mom’s outfit.  If you’re wanting to keep everything very low stress though….and totally uncomplicated….neutrals are always an easy way to go – and they look really nice when printed into wall art for your home.  In case you’re wondering:  YES, you can order from the family mini shoot when placing your order for all the prints & products that come with one of our 4 amazing MxB Collections.

FREE with 3 of our Session Packages:  Family Mini-Photoshoot!

REMINDERS:  Family Mini-Shoot

1.  Mom:  Do makeup & hair before arriving at the shoot

2.  Mom:  Bring a mini touch up kit to touch up hair & makeup.  Usually, just a powder, concealer, gloss.  Our Makeup artist will have any other items you might need, such as hairspray or a little blush to add some color for camera.

3.  ALL family members:  Wear the shirt/outfit you plan on shooting in

4.  If in doubt:  Bring a “back up” shirt, dress, or top

5.  Dad should probably get a little powder on the nose for the shots – our amazing makeup artist can take care of that for you 🙂

Any questions….don’t hesitate to call!  310.622.5819

Posted in Senior Pictures Los Angeles Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Los Angeles Senior Portraits – THE GUYS

_B0C2539_WEB    _B0C2471_WEB



Los Angeles Senior Pics What to wear for guys

These are images we shot for actor Brooks Hall – he’s not a high school senior, but we loved his take on “the suit shot”….and we think this relaxed vibe is perfect for HS Senior Pictures for Guys.   Every mom & dad wants a portrait of their son in a suit – looking very grown up, handsome, dashing & ready to take on the world after high school.  The problem is, these shots often look very stiff & unnatural – and they don’t look up to date and modern.  One of the main reasons for this sort of “old-fashioned” suit pic is that they’re too stuffy – the tie is all the way up, tight & constricting.  The jacket is buttoned.  The poor guy is practically in a straight-jacket.  But, if you look at Brooks’ pics, you don’t see any of that….and the reason is we kept it natural & casual by:

1.  shooting with a LOOSE TIE


2. shooting with Jacket & OPEN COLLARED SHIRT

Does Brooks look any less grown up, handsome, or dashing?  Nope.  He looks like he was born to to wear these clothes.  A couple things to look for when choosing jacket, shirt, tie:

a) FIT.  The jacket & shirt should fit perfect, in the sleeve length, shoulders & waist length.

b) COLOR.  Try mixing classic colors like black & gray with a pop of something unexpected, like Sage Green, Pink, Purple, Apple Green, or Eggshell blue.

c) QUALITY MATERIAL.  If possible, choose a shirt & jacket with high quality construction.  A cheap collar won’t photograph well….

d) CLASSIC TIE.  Steer away from ties that are too overly trendy or too loud.  A little personality or style is great – but try to imagine it in 5 or 6 years….will you be cringing when you walk past your Senior Portrait hanging on the wall?   Something classic will always look great.

Follow these tips for full-proof drop dead gorgeous shot for your high school senior pics!

Posted in Senior Pictures Los Angeles Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Senior Portraits Los Angeles




What to wear Senior Pictures

One of the first things I like to talk to my Seniors about is the kinds of activities they’re involved in at school.  Most high school students are involved in 2 major school related activities, whether that be School Paper, Student Council, Drama Club, Dance Team, Basketball, or Art Club.  The question is always whether or not to dedicate one of your wardrobe changes to a particular activity.  Obvously, if you’re involved in sports & have a Letterman’s Jacket, that’s a pretty easy thing to throw on for a few shots.  But, what if your activity is dance?  Should we dedicate one of the looks we shoot to dance?  What would you wear for a “Dance” shot?  A recital outfit?  Basic dance class wear?  Really depends on you & your personality – and is something we can help you out with when we discuss your shoot details.  …..Then there are the activities that are a little tougher to capture in a photoshoot.  For example, Nikki, above in the gloves, has been kick-boxing for years & is considered to be pretty amazing at it.  It’s a really big part of her life, and not something she’s ever had professional pictures taken of, so it would have been silly to not include this activity in her shoot.  BUT, we didn’t want to make it look cheesy.    After tossing around a few ideas, we decided to keep the set-up simple & focus on getting great shots of HER, more-so than a bunch of action shots that would have just ended up having really crazy ((& not so pretty lol)) facial expressions.  If Nikki pursues kickboxing in the coming years as a profession, she’ll have some really fierce shots for a personal website for promo purposes – – – and years from now when she’s a mom herself, she’ll have these senior pictures to prove that she can kick some serious butt!!

More tips on preparing for HS Senior Pics




Posted in Senior Pictures Los Angeles Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Headshots vs. Senor Pictures Los Angeles


Los Angeles Senior Portraits vs. Headshots

One of the biggest differences in LA Senior Pictures & LA Headshots is where the subject is looking.  Are they looking into camera?  Are they looking away?  For headshots, it’s pretty much an unspoken rule that the subject (the actor) should be looking into the camera.  It helps to capture the essence, the personality, the vibe of the actor.  It helps to establish the actor’ level of intensity, or their ability to make us laugh with just a casual smirk..  Sometimes an agent or manager will choose an image where the actor is looking off-camera…but it’s pretty rare.  Mostly, you’d see this with a character type that typically looks away….like a super quirky character type, or a super shy character type.  I’ve also seen a “looking away” shot be chosen by a talent rep for actors whose direct stare is a bit overly intimidating.  It’s never good to scare the casting director, right??  hheheeee…

Well, the opposite is true of HS Senior Portraits.  There is no goal to shoot a certain character type.  We’re not trying to gauge intensity or the kinds of roles that the subject plays.  We’re simply capturing the emotions & feelings & essence of the subject for that moment in time.    Because that’s really what senior pics are : a capsule in time to remember that special phase of going from being a kid…in your parents care…and part of their responsibility….to being an adult.  making your own decisions…or at least most of them!    Senior Pictures are the very last of the baby pictures.  Your parents started when you were a newborn.  They continued documenting your growth at every grade level.  Now, it’s the last of the last – your Sr. Year – and these photos mark the last time your parents officially document your age, development & growth.  It’s not something to be taken lightly…and it’s not something to be taken too seriously.  It’s something to just have fun doing, and leave the rest to us


Posted in LA Actor Headshots | Los Angeles - South Bay, Senior Pictures Los Angeles Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |