Many dream of being a model, because they want a sophisticated and lucrative job, or perhaps because they want to be recognized in the world of modeling. This industry is extremely competitive and full of pushbacks, but successful models are in an occupation they love. Knowing what is in store for those who want to enter this world can prepare you to become a model.
Part 1 of 3: Knowing the Essentials of Being a Model
Step 1. Stay healthy inside
Eat and drink healthy foods, and get plenty of exercise. Having a healthy body will help you to have your best image.
- Being in shape is important. Consider hiring a specialized modeling coach. Share your modeling goals with her, tell her what you want to look like, and ask her for a personalized exercise regimen to help you achieve those goals.
- Eat well. Contrary to what some tell you, you should eat healthy foods, in addition to healthy portions. Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, healthy fats, and protein should make up your staple diet. As much as possible, you should avoid sugars, starches, empty carbohydrates, and harmful fats.
- Make sure you drink a lot of water. Avoid sodas (even diet sodas) and minimize your alcohol intake.
Step 2. Look good.
Take care to see yourself healthy and well groomed. The way you dress and act are also important, but you should have a routine that helps you maintain the health of your skin and hair.
- Focus on keeping your skin clean and radiant. Wash your face in the morning and at night, exfoliate once a week and remember to remove your makeup before going to sleep.
- Keep your hair shiny and healthy. Some agencies and managers prefer the “natural greasy” look, so you might be fine if you prefer to shower to a minimum.
Step 3. Match your modeling goals to your body type
Technically, anyone can be a model. However, if you do not meet certain requirements, the work available to you could be extremely limited or you would have to compensate in other areas (reliability, techniques, etc.).
- Plus size model: If your body is full and curvy, you could be a plus size model.
- Runway model- Most of the women on the runway are at least 1.72m (5ft 8in) tall and typically have a small bust. Males are mostly between 5 feet 11 inches and 6 feet 2 inches (1.80 to 1.88 m).
- Model for publishersMost female editorial models are at least 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m), but a beautiful face and great personality are the most important traits of this type of model.
- Underwear model: In the case of women, they must have a bulging bust and a narrow hips. Men must have broad shoulders and a narrow waist.
- Alternative model: some agencies hire alternative models. These are models that do not conform to industry standards for beauty, height, and weight. Remember: having a passion or cause you fight for can open doors for you that would otherwise be closed due to your physical traits incompatible with industry standards.
- Other types of modeling: If you do not fit any of the descriptions of face or body that we have given you, maybe you can be a model of feet, hair or hands.
Step 4. You can consider sporadic modeling
If you think that the runway or magazines are not your element, look for other types of modeling. There are companies that hire models for special events or to promote specific products. In these modeling jobs, there are fewer restrictions on body type and more emphasis on personality.
- Promotional model- Some companies want their customer base to interact directly with models who are generally attractive and have likable personalities to promote their brand. You could see these models in supermarkets, events or clubs promoting food, liquor or new products.
- Spokesperson model- Companies hire spokesperson models to be constantly associated with a specific brand. Contrary to what most believe, these types of models do not always have to promote the brand verbally.
- Trade show model: there are companies or brands that hire this type of model to promote a product in the marquee or booth at trade shows. Generally, they are not permanent employees of the company, but work independently for the event in which they are going to participate.
Step 5. Take your look into account
The look you project can be shaped by both your body type and your style. These looks include: the curvy look from Brazil, the sophisticated and slender look from Argentina, the androgynous look from Europe or the look of the girl or boy next door. Know your attributes well, but also try to look good with other looks.
Step 6. Learn more about the industry
Learn as much as you can from books, blogs, and articles on modeling. Reading quality guides, articles and books will help you improve important skills (such as positions) and better understand how the industry works (such as how to find an agent).
Also find out about those reputable agencies that take their models to prominent places, such as magazines or fashion shows
Step 7. Prepare for a difficult road
The modeling world is packed with pretty faces. Being handsome is not the same as being successful as a model. Just to get a chance to get into the modeling business, in addition to having a good image, you will have to meet the needs of specific jobs. Modeling is only for serious people with exceptional looks and features. Because in today's world there are so many people trying to be a model, it is very difficult to get into this industry. Success is only achieved with patience and perseverance.
Step 8. Don't be shy
You will have to promote yourself and look for opportunities to advance and demonstrate your skills. Staying there and being "polite" will get you nowhere. Be yourself, let your personality shine through and have a confident attitude. If you're not feeling very confident, pretend: modeling often demands acting skills!
Part 2 of 3: Learn More About Portfolios and Agencies
Step 1. Take pictures for your portfolio
You should include professional close-ups: close-up photos without a lot of makeup on a simple background. You should take them in good natural light (not direct sunlight) and you should ensure that they do not have many distracting elements. These are used for agencies to see you naturally. You can take close-up, body and profile photos.
The most important thing to project in a portfolio is your ability to present a range of "characters" and looks
Step 2. Consider taking professional photos of yourself
While professional photography can be expensive, it can make a big difference between being overlooked and landing a job interview. Look at professional photography as a useful investment for your career!
- Print your favorite professional photos in 20 x 25 cm (8 x 10 inch) prints. Keep them in case you are asked to leave a copy before or after an interview.
- If you have enough professional photos, you could compile them into a portfolio. Take that portfolio with you to castings or agencies.
Step 3. Take your measurements and know your characteristics
This information can help agencies locate you. Knowing this information by heart will give you more professionalism when speaking with an agency or potential client.
- The most basic measurements are height, weight, and shoe size.
- You should also know your measurements, such as your clothing size, hip, waist, chest, bust, etc.
- Your characteristics includes data, such as your hair, eye and skin color.
Step 4. Go to a modeling agency
Almost all major cities have many modeling agencies, and almost all organize open calls to search for new talent.
- Bring your photos or portfolio. Make sure you also know your (exact) measurements.
- You may be asked to walk or pose for a close-up or other photo during an open call interview.
- If the agency rejects you, don't be discouraged. Often times, an agency looks for a diverse series of models, so you may not fit their concept of a model at the moment.
Step 5. Be wary of scams
Try to find out the reputation of a modeling agency before attending an open call or interview. Unfortunately, many are unaware of the characteristics of this industry and end up being scammed.
No agency should ask you for a fee when they meet you. The agency will charge you a commission when you are a model, but they shouldn't ask you too much in advance. If they ask you for a lot of money before working properly, retire
Part 3 of 3: Building a modeling career
Step 1. Do not sign statements of consent without consulting with your agent
A client might ask you to sign documents or statements of consent. Before signing, be sure to request a copy to share with your agent. You should not sign any contract that gives a photographer or client more power over your actions or images than they should have.
- Also, do not sign a contract with an agency unless both are lawful. If you are unsure of the legality of the contract, ask an experienced lawyer or model to read it.
- A good agent must have your best interests. That person should guide you through the legal issues of any contract.
Step 2. Be truthful when giving your measurements
Don't say that you are thinner than you really are just to have a chance. Once you get the job, the stylist will have trouble putting your clothes on and the truth will come out. You could lose future contracts if word gets out and you could end up without a career!
Step 3. Be professional, polite, and courteous
Remember that while you are not going to work in an office, you will have to be professional. Treat those who work with you with respect, because you never know what contact they might have or what kind of recommendation they might give you. Never look down on anyone. No matter how much you are a model, you will not have the right to be arrogant, fake or conceited.
- Always be on time for any appointment or photo session. If you are late or rude, your reputation could haunt you and no one will want to work with you.
- Be organized. Models often get last minute jobs and have very busy days. If you want to succeed, you will have to be aware of everything. A day-by-day planner could go a long way.
- Develop professional relationships with photographers. If you help the photographer look good, he or she will help you look good. Everyone wins, so be sure to treat them with respect.
Step 4. Take a career in modeling for real work
Those who don't take modeling seriously are unlikely to be successful. This industry is tougher than it looks and there is a lot of work behind all the glitz and glamor of fashion shows. Modeling is a full-time job that requires constant attention. If you neglect yourself for a week, your career could come to an end.
Keep in mind that modeling only has a small window of opportunity, and even if you take a short break, you may never be able to return. Models are usually only active for a limited time. If you become famous on the field, you could extend your career
Step 5. Confirm whether or not there will be a permanent professional makeup artist
Sometimes you will be asked to bring certain items (for example, makeup base) and if they have not hired a makeup artist, you will have to prepare for the occasion. We recommend having an emergency makeup kit so that you can apply makeup if necessary, even if a makeup artist is already present.
Step 6. Show your creativity at work
Photographers will want to see you doing various poses with different props and backgrounds. Versatility is key, so enchant the camera and interact with the world around you. Listen to the photographer's recommendations, but don't be afraid to try your own poses or attitude. Likewise, the catwalk coordinators will want you to put your stamp of attitude on the way you walk or to project a very specific emotion.
- Don't let a few malicious comments from unimportant people demoralize you. Keep your self-confidence high!
- Don't let rejection dissuade you from fighting for your dreams. In turn, try to take rejection with grace: You should not cut off relationships that you may need later.
- You can also enter modeling contests. However, make sure they are organized by reputable agencies.
- Know your limits when it comes to style and nudity. If you don't want to do glamorous work or are uncomfortable doing full nudes, communicate it and don't let anyone push your limits. In turn, reflect on where you want your career to go in the future. Maybe now you feel comfortable with all the glamor, but what if you decide to dedicate yourself to fashion or make a catalog in the future? You could be discriminated against if it is known that you have dedicated yourself to that line of work.
- If you are a woman and if you are going to go see, wear easy-to-remove clothes that do not have strips or details that leave marks on your skin. Don't wear a bra and put on a nude thong. This will optimize your ability to look good in whatever outfit the designer or fashion show organizers want you to try on.
- Be cautious if you are considering enrolling in a modeling school. These schools can be expensive, and their ability to teach modeling is in question. Some agencies even claim that those who come out of modeling schools have bad habits that are hard to break!
- If you've decided that signing with an agency is not your thing, you might consider freelancing. Of course, keep in mind that the remuneration is usually considerably lower and there are fewer security precautions.
- If you are not of legal age, ask your parents for permission.
- Maintain good health with diet and exercise. Avoid using drugs, which in the end will be harmful both internally and externally.
- If someone wants you to strike a pose that is uncomfortable for you, don't do it.
- If you are invited to another country for an audition or job, make sure you have the funds to purchase a return flight on your own. While jobs abroad exist, there are many scams that offer one-way flights and then trap young girls in the networks of prostitution, where they cannot afford a trip home.
- If you plan to do a photo session with a photographer you have met on the Internet, we recommend that you bring a companion. It's for your own safety, because you never know who's who on the internet! If you can't go with an escort (because no one is available or because the photographer doesn't support them), make sure to first find out the background of the photographer (for example, who they have worked with and for whom) and call someone when you go to the photoshoot and get out of it.
- Be cautious with those agencies that ask you for money advances. Most agencies make money from commissions, meaning they get a certain percentage of what the model is paid for their work. If the model isn't hired, they don't get paid. If you've already paid them, they won't have any incentive to get you a contract. However, don't dismiss everyone who asks you for advance fees as scammers. If you doubt a certain agency, ask other of their models what they think of the representation they receive.
- Almost all agencies will ask you to sign a contract. Make sure you read it completely and that you know the meaning of all the terms. Ask an experienced model or attorney to review the documents if you don't understand them. It is better to know what to sign before accepting.
- The pressure of modeling can cause long-term mental health problems, including eating disorders. If you think this is too much for you, don't be afraid to discuss it with someone. If you can't handle the pressure, it might be time to start looking for another occupation. Losing your health over a job is not worth it!
- Scams in the modeling world are real and easy to fall for. Some play with the hopes and dreams of an innocent. Be careful who you trust.