Becoming a Model- Part 2

Becoming a Model- Part 2

In order to become a successful model, you must choose a genre that is right for you…Fashion, Commercial, Promotional, Fitness, Lifestyle, Glamour, etc. Depending on how you appear to the public, your smile, size, and greatest assets should play a role in making your decision. I know that almost every aspiring model would love to do fashion, even I wish I could but on the industry level, I do not fit the bill. I am short (in the fashion world), standing at 5’5″. Fashion models need to be at least 5’8″ to be considered in any major modeling campaign. Smaller markets, such as Memphis, may choose you for some runway shows but you will not be able to make it a career. Commercial models are usually people that look good on camera, inviting and pleasant with a great smile. Many commercial models are a good fit for promotional modeling as well. I can continue giving examples of each genre but if you refer back to my first post on this subject, RESEARCH should be at the top of your task list.

After you choose your genre of modeling, you have two choices- be an independent  model (a model who finds and books her own jobs) or an agency represented (signed) model. There’s this myth that becoming a signed model costs lots of money. This is true and untrue…depending on how you invest in your modeling career.

Let’s start with the true statement. If you didn’t follow my guidelines from the first post, then you may end up spending lots of money trying to become a signed model. Failing to RESEARCH, can cost you money because you will be signing without knowledge of how the industry works. Submitting photos that agencies don’t need or can’t use on your comp card may keep you from getting signed or if they are interested, they will tell you to take photos with a photographer of their choice which will cost you money.

Let me explain to you what type photos agencies are interested in. Timeless images. Clean images. Photos of you with little to no make-up…they want to see the REAL you. Never submit “themed” images! Some photographers may take great photos but they may not know what photos agencies use to book models. So when you are testing or hiring a photographer for your portfolio, keep your  ultimate goal in mind especially if you plan to submit to an agency.

If the agency feels your talent isn’t worth their time, they may encourage you to take classes. Those classes can cost over $1000. This is their way of making money off you being “signed” with them. The classes will not guarantee work so I suggest using that money to work with a photographer that knows the modeling industry (if you are willing to invest). If not, take some time to learn your body, poses, and face then try another agency. Also be sure you are being realistic about the genre you chose.

When I got signed with Colors Agency here in Memphis, I had two fees to pay. The first was my comp cards which were about $200. The second fee was for my online profile which cost $120. There were no other out of pocket expenses I had to pay to become an agency represented model. So if you adhere to the guidelines in Becoming a Model Part 1, you should not have trouble with starting your modeling career.

If you have any questions or would like to book me for a model portfolio session, contact me.

This post is a continuation of Becoming a Model-Part 1.


Charlisha Renata