Self-Tapes can be really scary if you're unprepared, or you don't know what you're doing.
It's even more vital to know how to self-tape today because everything is happening online. Self-Tapes are taking over the casting game, and I want to make sure you're prepared!
Here are some important tips to make sure your self-tapes are really strong.
Have a designated space
Having a self-tape set-up that is always ready to go takes away the worry of figuring out how to shoot, and means you're always ready to go at a moment's notice.
If you can have all of your equipment set up in this space at all times, even better! If you can't do this, make sure you can set up quickly and easily.
Your space should have good lighting (if you can set up in front of a window, awesome!). Natural lighting will always look best on camera, but if you invest in good lighting that works too!
Have a neutral backdrop so all the focus is on you, and not on your cluttered bedroom! A blank wall works great, or even a curtain! Just make sure there are no distractions in the shot.
Make sure you prepare
When you work on your script for your self-tape, put in the work to really understand the story, the stakes, and who your character is.
When we don't prepare in this way, that's when the nerves show up and throw us off our game. The more preparation you do with your text, the more you can relax when you're shooting, and the more you can allow for discoveries.
Everyone's preparation looks different, but make sure you develop a strong system that works for you.
Go through your sides with a fine tooth comb to pick out all the important details, and then put those detective glasses on and put all the puzzle pieces together.
Let it go
At the end of the day when you've created your space and gone through your text to understand the story, it's time to let it all go!
Our job is not to prove that we can play the role. That aspect is out of our hands. All you have to do is connect with the material, show them who you are, and leave it at that.
Your character isn't focused on trying to book a role. They are focusing on the pressing issue they have at hand.
Let go of the expectations and the pressure you're putting on yourself.
Focus instead on having fun, and connecting with your reader. Focus on what your character is going through, or the problem they are trying to solve. Focus outwards.
Finally, don't forget to breathe.
Do you want to learn how to take these tips and bring them to the next level?
We will be starting the 5-Day Self-Tape Challenge very soon! (Oct.19th). You won't want to miss this jam-packed 5-Day event. We'll be going over tips covered in this blog IN DEPTH, and SO MUCH MORE.
Join a group of awesome actors, and transform your self-tape game so you can start booking consistently!
Tony Babcock started IYA Studio for Actors over ten years ago with a mission: to bridge the gap between improv, acting, and life in order to help actors reach their full potential and enjoy the journey.
Tony is an award-winning, unionized actor, director & acting coach with over 20 years of industry experience. He has helped thousands of actors to be more successful in their careers. He is also a certified life coach, NLP practitioner, motivational speaker and author.
Add him on FB here.