What makes a captivating close up? (Part 1)

The close up is the most important shot for the actor to master. If done well, it’s the moment the audience (and/or the auditors) fall in love with you.

If done poorly, you’ll have them running from the theatre, or ready to yell, “Next!”

Acting in a close up is a specialized skill. It is different from stage acting, and even different from a medium or wide shot.

To book roles in film and television, it’s imperative that you master the close up. Casting directors and Directors just don’t have time to teach you how to do this. It’s up to you to master this skill on your own.

Check out today’s video to find out the 4 components to a captivating close up (featuring THE MASTER herself, Meryl Streep).

This clip is from her Oscar-winning performance in the film, Sophie’s Choice.

So what makes this, and any, close up captivating? There are 4 principles to creating a powerful close up:

  • Seamless Acting
  • Emotional Availability
  • Active Listening
  • Maximum Exposure Of The Eyes

Use these 4 principles in your next close up. The audience, the auditors, and the camera will fall in love with you.

Leave a comment. What steps do you take to modify your performance for the tight frame of a close up?

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Los Angeles Actors – Are You Ready For Your Close Up?

FREE WORKSHOP: How To Be Captivating In A Close Up

Do you want to book work in film and television?

Successful film and television actors have something in common…they know how to make the camera fall in love with them! Do you?

In this interactive workshop with Wendy Davis, you’ll learn the 4 principles to creating a powerful, effective close up.

Whether you’re making the transition from theater to on-camera acting for the first time, or you’re ready to really up your on-camera game, this workshop will show you how to make the camera fall in love with you (and the audience too)!

ONE DAY ONLY: Oct 18th @ 11am and 7pm

Seats are limited. CLICK HERE to register for this FREE workshop.

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4 Comments

  1. Brilliant blog, thank you!

    Reply
  2. I absolutely loved the 6-week close-up class and this blog is a great reminder of what I learned. Thanks a bunch!

    Reply
  3. Wendy,
    Thank you for sharing that clip of Meryl Streep’s close up acting.
    That was an excellent choice to convey your message about the differences in close ups, medium shots and stage facial expressions. Janine

    Reply
  4. I look at the actor’s eye that is closet to the camera. So if she is across from me and the camera is to my right, I look at her right eye. This minimizes eye movement on film and makes the actor appear more focused.

    Reply

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