Here are Richard's top tips for successful self taping...
- As with any audition, learn any material you are sent thoroughly before putting it on tape
- Make sure the room in which you shoot your tape is quiet, echo-free and light enough. Try to also have a plain or neutral background behind you, so that you are the main focus.
- Sit to shoot your scenes, rather than standing, as this will ensure your face is in shot the whole time.
- Ensure your camera (or mobile phone or tablet) is on a tripod or other steady surface to avoid shaking and is level with your face.
- It's much easier to have a friend with you to operate the camera and read in the lines of other characters (fellow actors are especially useful for this).
- Do test shots of each scene and play them back to check picture and sound quality before actually shooting a take (you might actually end up using some of them).
- Introduce yourself with your name and agent (or personal contact details), mention which character you're reading and introduce each scene to separate them.
- Separate each take with a note of the scene and take number, like a clapperboard, followed by a second or two of silence. Write down the numbers of the takes you think are useable, so you can view them after shooting.
- Your performance will be fresher the fewer takes you do, so concentrate and keep going. Only take short breaks to refresh if you really need to.
- The eyes say it all, so make sure they are emoting, rather than looking down and reading from the script.
- Editing is far easier if you shoot a whole scene as one, rather than picking up mid-take, so if you make a mistake, start again.
- When you have the best take for each scene, Edit them cleanly and put all the scenes onto one file, as this will make it easier to send, and view.
- Be sure to adhere to the sending or upload methods that have been requested and send the finished product as far before the specified deadline as you can.
- Do at least one dummy run before you are actually asked to self tape, so that you're fully prepared whenever the need arises.
If you were inspired by these tips, you'll love the eBook!
CLICK HERE to download a printable copy of these tips, to keep with you and remind you whenever you have to self tape