By: Abby Rozens
Let’s start from scratch… at the very start of my career, the most difficult part was asking the question that all models go through. Questioning myself, “How Do I start? or “Where do I go?” It can be intimidating to be one person out of so many in this business. Watching or listening to interviews with models, it seems as if each has a different answer. The path isn’t always easy, but I’ve learned a few things along the way, and this is how I feel.
When you have a dream that you just can’t let go of, follow your gut and go after it. But keep in mind that your ambitions need effort, perseverance, and at times digging deep inside to understand that this idea is your passion. Make sure you’re prepared to do just that. Each, and every model's story is unique.
Once you decide this is what you want to do, it’s time to choose your path on how to get there. That is why I have written essential things you need to know for your future career. Reach for the stars!
Unlike becoming a doctor or a lawyer where you take exams, then earn a degree, the modeling profession is a little different. Luckily, with the internet, and plenty of resources, there are so many options on how to start.
The first thing to start thinking about is building your portfolio – this is essentially your resume. Your very first photos to submit to casting directors and agents are your digitals! Digitals are natural photographs that should be taken in good lighting, and with little to no makeup. All digitals should have a headshot, a ¾ shot, and a full body shot of what you currently look like. These images give the client an idea of how you, the “blank canvas,” would look if you booked a fitness, commercial, or beauty shoot. Although it takes time to build a solid portfolio, it demonstrates to casting agents what you have to offer and what you can do for them. Prepare to send or bring these pictures with you to every casting call!
Finding Work as a new Model
Not only with digitals. Now is the time to start searching for opportunities that lie ahead. I recommend looking up websites that specialize in announcing casting/open calls for both models and actors. In 2017, I was always looking up jobs in my area, and so many people specialize in the industry looking for talent every day. Talent that could be you!
NB: your safety comes first. Researching the person and the brand is a must.
The very first commercial I booked online was in Cryptocurrency! It was such a fun experience meeting fellow directors, and people who had the same interests as me. It’s all about taking risks and getting yourself as much learning experience as possible.
Finding agencies as a new model
In the very beginning as a model, you want to consider agencies near you! One of the best ways to get yourself noticed is by attending open calls in your area to your advantage. Agencies love seeing new faces. Prepare some amusing facts to share with the agents before your audition. Through this, they can get a sense of your personality and what makes you special. My experience at an open call revealed that each model was required to submit a headshot, slate their names, and perform a runway walk. This process is very short and can be a little nerve-wracking, but the most essential part of this career path is displaying a level of confidence that’s unmatched. The fact that you have something special to offer must always be kept in mind. Success as a Photographer: Joe Underbakke
model can be greatly influenced by
your ability to present yourself.
Opportunities might not appear immediately, so don’t feel disappointed. It might take a lot of No’s to just get that one Yes.
Take Modeling Classes or Workshops
As far as I understand, it is OK to ask for help. You don’t have to fly solo. Guidance is what helps us grow as models. Amazingly, professionals have made it possible to learn and teach their skills to those who want to learn how to walk the runway or pose in front of the camera. I still learn daily how to fill up my space when taking photos! Taking your skills to a workshop provides you the chance to network with other aspiring models if you’re new to the profession. By truly mastering the art of pose, it starts with an artist’s vision of imagery. All models should be encouraged to perceive themselves as artists and should discover this experience in a class!
When I attended class as a kid, we touched base on how to use props and knowing your angles. You will need to know a variety of poses that work to convey the right image. It’s amazing how just a tiny change in the detail within our pose can transform the whole picture itself. That’s probably why when I take over a million pictures on my phone, I only choose one photo!
Taking Advantage of Social Media as a Model
Speaking of photos, although you have your hard copies, what about your hobbies? In this day and age, social media is taking the throne. Every business has social media to connect followers and see what’s new in the company. Think of it as your second portfolio, your sole proprietorship! By building your brand and connecting with others, social media is now becoming an essential tool where every agency or client would want to have all your socials. Social media allows you to build and develop a platform for your growing audience, and your Instagram handle is the first step to your brand. This can interest clients who may want to book you for print or commercial purposes!
If you don’t already have a social media presence, I recommended starting to build one. Not only is it a good way to display your current and new photos, but to also see what you do in your free time! It provides them to get a sense of your personality, and how you share it with the world. For example, posting about your travels, or your “model-off-duty” outfits show an interest in what you like. Keep in mind that not everything has to be picture-perfect. On my social media, I try to post new places that I’ve recently been to while wearing the cutest outfit! Your Instagram style or aesthetic determines the type of model you strive to be. Just be you!
Overall, there are now countless opportunities for people of various shapes and sizes to enter the industry. Modeling will always be a very competitive job. It’s critical to be persistent and patient. Opportunities might not appear immediately, so don’t feel disappointed. It might take a lot of No’s to just get that one Yes, and it goes a long way. Creating connections in this profession will take time. You never know who you might meet or how they might be able to
help you in the future because the modeling and fashion industries are constantly moving! Being flexible will enable you to keep up with the industry's constant changes and succeed as a professional model.
I wholeheartedly support you to maintain and manifest those big dreams. I want to inspire women to value their individuality. Remember this, take care of yourself, stay well, and never doubt your ability to achieve anything you sincerely desire. The opportunities are endless and infinite!
May your wishes come true!