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What to do Between Jobs

By: Ani Martirosyan

You made it! Congratulations!

You have worked so, so hard and gotten brand new digitals, figured out how to collaborate with photographers and artists, maybe even gotten yourself a modeling agent! Anyone who is dreaming of being a working model knows how much hard work, persistence and dedication it took to get there. I, personally, am proud of you!

Ok, but what's next? Now that you have found your calling, what do you do in between auditions and bookings? Trust me, one thing you shouldn't do is sit glued to your phone waiting for a call, or stare at your monitor for that one important email. I have done that. I have done that back when the telephones were attached to the wall...ugh, remember those days? Any 90's babies here? Make some noise!

There are many reasons why you shouldn't freeze your personal time waiting for career growth. One, it's not mentally sustainable. Life goes on, and you need to live it! When the opportunity calls, it will find you.

After a decade of working in the industry, there are three things that I find important to add to your routine. You can find them by responding to these questions:

1) Am I learning anything new?

2) Is it good for my body/mind?

3) Is it benefiting my career?

I highly recommend getting a hobby. That could be swing dancing, pottery, welding, wood carving, drawing, fencing... etc. Options are unlimited. Anything new and exciting you have not tried before is a great way to exercise the most important muscle: the brain. It also adds a new color to your resume's special skills.

True, many models have day jobs, and very limited time to have any hobbies, but I hope they will be able to carve time.And those of us who model full time need things like this to branch out from it. You are not one dimensional, so your interests shouldn't be either. Also, it's FUN!

I also recommend getting a hobby because during most commercial auditions they will ask what you do outside of modeling/acting, or what your hobbies are. You want to make sure you have an answer ready that is something you actually do, so if they ask follow up questions you aren’t making anything up.

Secondly, our constant worry about the next gig or audition causes very high stress on our bodies and minds. I can't stress enough the importance of finding peace and control over your thoughts. Meditative yoga has been my haven for the past three years, starting with the pandemic, when the world collectively started falling apart and I needed to block the noises and ground myself.

Photographer: Joe Underbakke

We all have to hear “no” a lot and have to grow thick skin from this industry, so don’t beat yourself up when you are still in the learning stages as you get to know more and more in this industry, and about yourself.

I also love running! Studies have found that running reduces stress, anxiety, and depression. It helps with confidence, boosts the immune system, and strengthens the joints. While many people turn to running as just a form of exercise, I think the reasons listed above are also a great reason to try it out!

Sometimes modeling can be physically demanding. You have to hold a plank, or balance on a board, jump up and down 12387387 times until they get the perfect take. Would that stress you out if you already have a healthy work out routine? Non, mademoiselle. You have been training for that day!

Something different works for everyone so try what we suggest but also know your own body. Some people have bad knees or ankles, so I wouldn’t start with running. Some people don’t enjoy how slowed down yoga is, so try kickboxing or gentle at home exercises instead. Whatever works for us may not work for you, so try different things with friends. It’s also a great way to bond and have fun new experiences with the people who also support your career.

You may have noticed that all the previous points can also benefit your career, which brings us to the third question. We are mostly a sum of everything that either happens to us, or we choose to make happen. That reflects on every aspect, including our careers.

What directly benefits your career is...KNOWLEDGE as a professional. Knowledge comes in all different forms, but most of this comes from trial and error as well. We all have to hear “no” a lot and have to grow thick skin from this industry, so don’t beat yourself up when you are still in the learning stages as you get to know more and more in this industry, and about yourself.

Being born with the right looks is only 40 percent. Take Gigi Hadid. She was born in a family of the rich and famous, and has model looks. The doors were open to her from day one, let's be honest. But even her, someone with so many advantages already, took runway walking classes! With none other than Naomi Campbell! Because she realized that her looks and the name can only take her so far. If she can't take a step on a catwalk with grace and confidence, the public will know. The public always knows!

So here’s my biggest tip: take posing classes and runway workshops, read books, imitate your favorite models (hello Britney Wittes) and don’t be afraid to let yourself shine!

Lastly, I would like to tell you a secret. Many clients like to work with well-rounded talent! Nowadays, during many auditions you get asked questions related to your personality, such as "Where is your favorite destination to travel?" or "What's the last book you have read that has changed your life?" or "What do you like to do in your spare time"?

I personally have been asked to talk about myself more times than I care to count. And guess what? I have a lot to say about myself, because I make it a point to live my life. Don't get me wrong, it’s not guaranteed that you will book the job because you climbed Mt. Everest last weekend, but will that leave a positive impression–for sure.

....Now go out there, you beautiful thing, and make me proud!

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