Getting new headshots is probably not an actor's favorite thing to do—driving around town, researching, looking at books, comparing prices, wondering if you're getting a good deal, worrying about the prints. A new kind of printing facility, however, might make the whole process a little less tiresome for the L.A. actor.
For the last 12 years, New York actors have had the option of paying a visit to Reproductions, a large printing facility that seems to cater to the actor in smart ways. Many actors even stop by Reproductions before they've chosen a photographer. The facility keeps some 60 portfolios on hand that actors can peruse at their leisure. If the actors see work they like, they can step up to one of several computer kiosks and take a look at a photographer's website and send off an e-mail to set up an appointment.
On Feb. 1, Reproductions opened the doors to its new Los Angeles facility, located near the Universal Studios entrance, at 3499 Cahuenga Blvd. West, (323) 845-9595. While it might take company president Cameron Stewart a few extra months to bring the West Coast facility up to speed with its New York big sister, Stewart has been busily promoting the place for months. It's an easy sell for photographers—the facility pays to put together the photographer's portfolio, with the philosophy that the photographer may turn around and recommend Reproductions for printing, because, as Stewart puts it, "Reproductions is the best."
The grand opening on the West Coast will also mark the debut of a new service the company is offering exclusively in Los Angeles, called the "master print process." Using digital technology, the company claims it has unlocked the key to producing high-end lithographic reproductions—"Photographic quality at lithographic prices," Stewart likes to say. These prints will sell at $99 for 300 copies, while standard photographic prints price at $95 for 100.
At Back Stage West's annual Actorfest on Apr. 21, Reproductions will also unveil the first L.A. version of the free Directory for Headshot Photography, a hardcover book that includes full-page displays of local photographers' work and a comprehensive listing. (The full-page ads are paid, whereas the listings are free to photographers.) Copies will also be available at Samuel French.
"We're really excited about coming to L.A.," said Stewart. "It's a big market, but we feel up to the task. I think people are going to realize that they can get the quality at an affordable price—and have a good experience while doing it, too."