Landing the Role of Kate

A chronicle of my actventures

With 5 Minutes to Spare

Went to Trisha’s last night for our big rendezvous. I got there around 9pm and she poured me some freshly pressed tea and said, “By midnight, you’re going to be an actor.”

Trisha went all out for me. I’m giving her a standing ovation. Basically she thought to herself, “What does Lorena need to achieve her goal in the quickest way possible?” then assembled a folder full of information for me to use to do just that. We’ve all thought it: where do you even begin with something like this? Well, now I have a folder that I will share with all of you.

So, what’s in the folder? Where is my finished resume? Where are these elusive headshots? Find out all that and more after the cut.

The folder comes with two books to read:

  • Michael Caine’s Acting in Film: An Actor’s Take on Movie Making
  • Glenn Alterman’s Secrets to Successful Cold Readings

The Michael Caine book is a little old (1990), but she assured me it had all the relevant information basics that I would need. The other book is because most film auditions are cold readings rather than prepared pieces. She says that this Glenn Alterman is the go-to guy for this. I plan to read and review both books in upcoming posts. By review I mean more to summarize the book and talk about stuff that is weird, interesting, or otherwise unique, not give a full out critique to the book.

Next up is a little packet of protocols for what to do/bring to an audition and to a booking. Also in the packet is some overview info about marketing yourself, differences between types of work, and just a general introduction to acting. The main take aways from the packet are just like any other professional field—act professionally: Dress appropriately, arrive 10 minutes early, be polite, always bring a copy of your headshot/resume, call if you’re going to be late, reply to audition requests in a timely manner, etc.

Then we have a collection of links and people. Basically, Trisha suggests I join some online mailing lists that send out all the most up-to-date info on upcoming projects in the Portland and Seattle area. She also said I should go to and go through all their info on what to expect on set in order to learn the language before showing up to the shoot (as an extra).

She suggested an acting workshop for me. It’s an eight-week course, Beginning and Intermediate Acting for Film/TV, taught in downtown Portland by Shelly Lipkin. She also told me to go ahead and submit my resume/headshots to the local casting directors and even to the local agencies, because “you just never know what they are looking for.” Apparently half of the acting world is based on what particular look they need at the time. Here’s hoping they need freckles!

So after all of that exhausting information overload, we needed something fun to do. Time to bust out the headshots! I called up all 94 photos into Adobe Bridge and went to refill my tea as Trisha perused. She came up with 18 that she liked and we put them into a separate folder, took a small break, then went back to look at them again. All you need are two shots: one serious and one smiley.

Film likes serious and commercials like smiley (they want to make sure you have good teeth). It was hilarious to watch her at it, she’d scroll back and forth through four photos, all almost the same exact look, and say, “There’s something here. One of these has it.” Finally, the two shots (and 2nd and 3rd places for both) were decided upon. I am now supposed to send the photos to Final Print in LA and have them print me some copies. It’s $50 for 25 prints. As she said, “If you go in with headshots printed at Office Max, it looks like you’re an amateur with no experience.” We looked at each other and laughed. She added, “Well, we’re going to fool them.”

With that we moved onto creating my acting résumé. As I went to the fridge to switch from tea to beer, she mentioned that she’d helped so many people redo their résumés, it would practically write itself. Well, if you’ve ever sat down to write that “Experience” section of your résumé when you have no experience, then you know exactly what we went through last night.

Thankfully acting résumés are more than just experience! They want to know about your training and your special skills. Wow, do I ever have some special skills. Who knew that having a passport was a special skill? Or being able to touch my nose with my tongue? Or that I’m good with animals? All special skills. The main groups of special skills include: dialects, languages, sports, and musical instruments (singing included). I have the first three, but my musical abilities are… well, let’s just say that they are not.

After playing with the font size and kearning for ten minutes, the résumé was complete and fit on the back of an 8×10. “Well, now you’re an actor.” Trisha said as we high-fived. I looked at the clock, it was 11:55pm.


So, I put a copy of my résumé here (without my real phone number) and the uncropped images of the headshots are below. I will crop the finals down a little bit to cut out the excess white space and then send them out.

Headshot 1

Headshot 2


January 6, 2010 - Posted by | Beginnings | , , , , , , ,


  1. Interesting stuff! Keep tweeting whenever you update this, I’d like to see how it goes. Acting seems like one of those fairly mysterious worlds – auditions and such are often written about and shown in films and on TV, but you never really get a sense of what it’s like to be in one.

    Also, your resume brings a ‘Page Not Found’ message.

    Comment by Matt | January 7, 2010 | Reply

    • Thanks, will do!

      And I’ll get that resume bit fixed as well.

      Comment by lorenagay | January 7, 2010 | Reply

  2. Ohh… do you feel excited? All the preps are bound to be at least slightly motivating… YOU’RE ON YOUR WAY BABY! I like the head-shot in the brugandy shirt best… it has a “look” to it. Perhaps saying “i’m not smircking, but i know something you haven’t found out yet… so hire me and find out”… I wish you upcoming success! *high-five*

    Comment by ambushed by twilight | January 7, 2010 | Reply

  3. Cute pics! I love the second one, you look so good and your hair!!! amazing. Good luck!

    Comment by GriffsSayWhat | January 7, 2010 | Reply

  4. I like the first one! I’ve seen that smirk before, related to a certain contract job that we both shared at one time. :)

    Comment by Lindsay | January 7, 2010 | Reply

  5. I like both pictures. Can’t wait to see how this develops.
    Good luck anyway!!!

    Comment by Bleriana | January 8, 2010 | Reply

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