Updated: Jun 17, 2019
You only get one chance to make an unforgettable first impression. And creating a comp card is one of the ways to do it. The composite card or comp card serves both as an actors business card and a mini-portfolio. Any businessman would tell you how important business cards are to the success of their business.
A well-formatted comp card with stunning pictures and filled out with relevant information might just be all it takes to attract a positive reaction from a casting director. Such an interest might lead to your next modeling or acting job. So you can see that comp cards are highly important marketing and branding tools for serious actors and models.
Comp cards contain the latest and best Headshots and full body shots. Since actors and models usually get jobs based on their looks, you can see why a mini-portfolio with the up to date pictures and information is crucial. Even though beautiful appearance is not considered as one of the most important things needed to gain success in acting or modeling business, nevertheless you will have to get noticed first, before your other qualities come into play.
A comp card is the most important thing you take with you to auditions and casting calls, because, with a comp card, you can leave a positive and lasting impression of what you look like with the casting director. If his team needs to go over your stats, they’ve got all the information right there on your comp card.
Usually, a model’s comp card is editorial (like a spread in a fashion magazine), while the actor’s comp card is lifestyle (talking on phone, hailing a cab, etc.) It is important that the images on your comp card are your absolute best. So, what does a comp card look like? Composite cards come in all types of layouts, but some basic elements should be common to all.
A closeup headshot is a key component. This shot should be head and shoulders, or perhaps from the waist up, but no wider than that. Many casting directors encourage models and actors to keep the headshot nearly makeup-free so that your true face shines through. Your comp card should also contain three or four other images, showing a variety of looks with at least a few full body shots.
As for the information, your card should include the measurements, including bust, waist, hips, height, shoe size, and bra size, depending on the gender and the focus of the model or actor (lingerie, fitness, haute couture, etc.). Finally, contact information is essential to feature on the card!