Getting Started in the Industry
New York Style Headshots for Kids & Teens on Long Island. For those of you who are just starting out, or have kids new to the industry, a professional headshot that stands out is key. A headhsot is a marketing tool. I have been working with kids & teens for 15 plus years and I know what talent managers and agents are looking for.
I shoot all of my headshot sessions in NYC & on Long Island, I travel to any location or I shoot at my home studio.
I choose to shoot all of my headshots using natural light. I happen to love the clean crisp look that natural light produces and this is what managers and agents prefer at the moment. I am very experienced in studio lighting and occasionally I get a request for an indoor headshot session. No problem!
Types of Headshots
Legit | A theatrical shot really pops. It says I am here, I am good and I am confident. Showing confidence in your eyes is how I choose a legit image. Commercial | Warm, friendly and trusting is what casting directors are looking for in this type of shot. Smiley, clean and light.
Check out some great examples of a legit look vs a commercial look below.
How much do headshots cost?
Headshot sessions range from $295.00 to $495.00 depending on age. A make-up artist is available at an additional cost and is paid directly to the artist. I urge all parents who have kids that are serious about their craft to make the investment and hire a hair and make-up artist. It truly makes an obvious difference.
Long Island family photographer, bright, bold, energetic portraits of people.
Summer is pretty much here and I have been preparing for my upcoming photo shoots. I have been scouting locations all over NYC and Long Island. I have so many different locations that I am excited to share with all my clients. This was the first time that I scheduled a photo shoot in Cold Spring Harbor. This town has a little bit of everything and for this session we stayed right by the water.
Had such a fun night shooting candids at this Bar-Mitzvah over the weekend. The place was packed and filled with love & life celebrating Shelby & Dylan. Watching everyone have a blast is always a thrill to me. The venue was Club Aura in East Meadow.
Singer | Songwriter | Actress
I can’t believe we actually did it. People often think that because I am a photographer and actors headshots are one of my niches, that creating a headshot for my own daughter would have happened sooner. For some reason, it never seemed like the right time. I think waiting until she was ready and more mature actually worked out for the best. Having kids in front of my camera almost everyday I can tell the difference between those kids that really want it and what kids parents want it for them more. I think it’s important to push your kids but because this industry is so grueling, I wanted to be sure that this was something SHE truly wanted to pursue and take seriously. We have supported her passion since the beginning and will continue to offer her the best opportunities possible. Now that Celia’s headshots are done and HER desire to “want it” is evident, NYC here we come!
Ava’s Bat-Mitzvah at Temple-Or Elohim on January 17th was perfect in every way. The saying, it’s all in the details, is so true. From the color scheme to the decor of the room all enhances the WOW factor when guests walk in. The entertainment company, Party Hardy, was so professional and full of energy.
Back in the fall when Ava”s Mom had asked me if I would photograph the party, we talked about scheduling a pre-mitzvah photo shoot. We scheduled the session for early fall since the images were going to be used to decorate the room. I wanted to create a group of images for Ava that she was proud of. They were planning making them life size and putting them all around the room. I started by listening to what their requests were and after that I went to work on creating a vision board so we were all on the same page. We started the session with my awesome hair and makeup artist AnnMarie Behling of My Pretty Committee. We then head out to shoot on location. Here are some images from the pre-mitzvah session and the actual party.
My name is Tracey Spero and I am a portrait photographer here on Long Island. I specialize in shooting headshots. I am known for creating captivating portraits of kids and teens. To help you prepare for a headshot session I thought I would put together some info that will help you show up ready to shine.
- Practice poses and expressions in front of a mirror
- Visualize different emotions and watch how your expression changes
- Recite a monologue in the mirror and watch how your face changes with each sentence
- The professional smart kid / tailored shirt or jacket
- The popular girl or boy in school / trendy, athletic or sexy
- The girl next door / pretty & clean
- The bad boy or girl / tuff / tomboy / edgy
- Does your look allow you to play different characters? Actors are hired to play a character and tell a story. Think about how these character types would look. Try to bring 1 outfit for each of these looks.
What to Bring
- Your previous headshots (so I can improve)
- OPH | Other Peoples Headshots for inspiration. It will help you communicate the look you want
- Favorite Music
- Variety of clothing
- Lip balm
- Hair brush/comb
- Makeup and hair products you prefer / hairspray
- Bring a variety of clothing that emphasizes different roles/characters (cute, tailored, sexy, tuff, athletic, smart)
- Avoid large logos or branding
- Avoid white shirts unless you plan to wear it underneath something
- Different necklines will change the apparent shape of your face. Bring a variety of different flattering shirts to see what works best
- Pay attention to details. Layers, ties, belts etc… all pull outfits together (look on pinterest for ideas)
- Darker clothes work, they attract less attention and put the attention on your face and eyes
- Bring a few extra outfits so we can choose what looks best on you at the shoot
Hair & Make-Up
- I have talented artists that I work with on a regular basis and highly recommend having a professional at the photoshoot for ages 14 and up
- If you are under 13-years old the only makeup you need is lip gloss, a little blush and a little mascara
- Make-up should be clean and natural
- Your make-up or hair-style should be exactly what you would do for an audition
- Translucent powder – your face will appear flawless in photos. Shine disappears, pores seem smaller, skin looks even, and blush is smoother
- Avoid shimmers or products with lots of sparkle or shine
A headshot is one of the most important tools you will have as an actor, no matter what age. Remember… your photo has to sell not only your looks but more importantly, a piece of your personality. To book a session with me call 516-242-8366.
Being a Teen
Worthier than you believe. Stronger than you know. More beautiful than you think.
Being a teen is one of the hardest years for most kids. Boys & girls both. Not only are they trying to navigate their way socially, they are often struggling with self esteem and lately, body image more so than ever. In their eyes, they just don’t seem to measure up. My motivation to launch a new program for teens of all ages is coming straight from my heart and is driven by my passion. My passion to build confidence in teens by creating photographs that capture their beauty. Teens are bombarded with imagery that seem so unrealistic to them because the images are in a magazine or showcasing a famous music artist or model. The truth is, having a hair and make-up artist, a stylist and a really good photo retouched is part of the formula.
My idea is to create an experience for teens and create photos that could be on the cover of any teen magazine. Whether your teen likes fashion, is a musician, is an athlete, loves theater, sings, loves the city, etc… the experience will be unique to them. I have always been told that my portraits are different, that I truly know how to make kids shine. The most rewarding part about what I do is showing teens their images and watching their eyes light up with disbelief and joy. This session took place in the city on the Lower East Side. Because Sabrina has such stunning features, that she might not be 100% comfortable with yet, like most teenage girls, I wanted to create photos that she could have to remind herself that her beauty is all her’s and all natural. Her eyes, her brows, her dark hair but most importantly her easy going, innocent, sweetness that shines in all her images.
Here is an email from Sabrina’s Mom after showing her the images. “When I first received the photos of Sabrina, she was looking through them, and turned to me and said, “Mom, do I really look like that or did she do something to these pictures?” When I said, “No, you really look like that”, I could see on her face that she had seen herself in a new way, a good way.”
OK! So 2 pre-mitzvah shoots in 1 week. Both happened to be sports themed and boys. If you have worked with me before, you know that I am not about cookie cutter and what inspires me is to always keep the quality and style of my photography recognizable yet my subject matter and locations different. This photo shoot took place on a windy, cold day. Aaron was such a good sport! PUN INTENDED! He never complained about being cold and was a pleasure to work with.
As usual, after I have an initial conversation with the mitzvah Mom, I put together a mood board to inspire everyone involved. It’s important that stylists, make-up artists and the photographer are all on the same page and most importantly the communication between me and the mitzvah Mom have clear expectations. Aaron’s Mom brought all the right accessories which is what helped make this photo shoot such a success.
I am going to call this photo shoot theme “Born to Score”!
I have been working with kids of all ages for 15 plus years and I have to say working with teens are my favorite. What a perfect time in a kids life to capture their personality and make them feel like a supermodel for a few hours. Combining my love for fashion, my love for teen photography and my obsession with finding cool locations on Long Island and NYC, is extremely rewarding, but most of all, seeing the smiles and disbelief on their faces after viewing themselves in the images is priceless. This is a common reaction I hear after viewing, “WOW, YOU MADE ME LOOK SO GOOD”, “IS THAT ME”, “HOW DID YOU DO THAT”, etc…. What a confidence booster for a not so confident teen to see themselves in a different light and hi-lighting what makes them truly unique.
A client of mine, Cigall Goldman, founder of Mazelmoments.com, an online resource for planning Jewish events, recently asked me if I would ever consider shooting just pre-mitzvah photo shoots and advertising on her website. I thought about it and realized what a perfect market for me since I love everything about fashion photography. From styling, coming up with themes to working with hair and makeup artists. I set out to find myself some kids, a hair and make-up artist to work with and a stylist. I am building a solid team and super excited to shoot the 5 teens I have lined up for this month. This past weekend I worked with Aaron. It started with a conversation with his Mom about what his party theme and interests are. Like most boys, the love of sports combined with neon colors weighed heavily on the decision to shoot at this location. My goal is to not end up with traditional portraits ( you will get traditional portraits the day of the party) but to make your child feel like his images could be in the latest fashion magazine. Here are just a few that I created for Aaron.