How to Become a Photography Model: 12 Steps

Table of contents:

How to Become a Photography Model: 12 Steps
How to Become a Photography Model: 12 Steps

Modeling is one of the most competitive industries. Not only have the models won the genetic award, but they also have to be professional, ambitious, hard-working, and unique. Not everyone can be a model, but if you have the willingness to push yourself, you could see yourself on the cover of a magazine one day.


Part 1 of 3: Building Your Portfolio

Become a Photo Model Step 1
Become a Photo Model Step 1

Step 1. Take some introductory photos

To appear before the agencies, you will have to have photos to show them what you look like. Your photos don't have to be professional, but they should clearly convey what you look like today.

  • Schedule a photoshoot with a friend who has a good camera.
  • Make sure you get at least one good head shot and one good full body shot.
  • Don't wear makeup and keep your clothes simple (a tank top and jeans).
  • Take photos outside to take advantage of natural lighting.
Become a Photo Model Step 2
Become a Photo Model Step 2

Step 2. Work with different photographers

To have a compelling portfolio, you have to have a lot of photos of yourself, which must be different. Working with different photographers on different photos will help you have many photo options to choose from when creating your book.

  • Try to demonstrate a range of facial expressions and body movements when working on different photos.
  • The more photographers you work with and photos you take, the more comfortable you will feel in front of the camera.
  • Certain photographers bring out the best qualities of certain models. Find photographers who work well with you and collaborate with them often.
  • Look for photographers who are also starting their career. They are more likely to want to work with a new model.
  • You can find photographers by searching Craigslist or by creating a profile on websites like Model Mayhem.
Become a Photo Model Step 3
Become a Photo Model Step 3

Step 3. Determine your “type” of modeling and accept it

The fashion industry seeks to classify people, so in order to promote yourself effectively, you have to know and understand your "type."

  • If you have an accessible type of beauty, you will be ideal for commercial print modeling.
  • If you have an interesting and unexpected face, you will be ideal for editorial fashion photos.
  • If you have an amazing body, you will be ideal for lingerie and swimwear photos.
  • If you are tall, you will be ideal for the runway and bridal photos.
  • If you have a perfectly symmetrical face, you will be ideal for beauty photos.
  • If you have a very toned and fit body, you will be ideal for fitness modeling.
  • If you have perfect hands or feet, you will be ideal for part modeling.
  • If you have a very outgoing personality, in addition to being attractive, you will be ideal for advertising modeling.

Part 2 of 3: Make Sure You Have Representation

Become a Photo Model Step 4
Become a Photo Model Step 4

Step 1. Find agencies

Do a Google search for modeling agencies where you live. Take a look to see which models an agency currently represents, what kinds of jobs they do, and how often they work.

  • Check to make sure the agency is reputable. If she has reviews online, read them to see how much the models they represent enjoy working with her.
  • If you are interested in working with a smaller agency, see how big it is.
  • If you live in a rural area, look for modeling agencies in the nearest large city.
Become a Photo Model Step 5
Become a Photo Model Step 5

Step 2. Send your information and photos to the agents

Most agencies have online forms where you can submit your information and photos. Honestly reveal your height, weight, and other measurements.

  • If an agent is interested in representing you, they will contact you within four weeks, usually.
  • Don't feel bad if they don't call you. Perhaps the agency already represents someone who is very similar to you.
  • Do not give up! Keep submitting your application to the agencies until you find a good one.
Become a Photo Model Step 6
Become a Photo Model Step 6

Step 3. Attend open calls for modeling

Look for modeling calls where you live. Sometimes agencies organize them when looking to hire new talent. Attend one using little makeup, simple clothes, and high heels, if you're a woman.

  • Women must wear jeans and a black tank top.
  • Men should wear jeans and a shaping black T-shirt.
  • Be sure to bring copies of your presentation and body photos.
  • If you have had other modeling jobs in the past, print the photos and take them with you.
  • Be punctual! Professionalism will set you apart in the modeling industry.
Become a Photo Model Step 7
Become a Photo Model Step 7

Step 4. Show your personality

If you have the opportunity to be in the presence of an agent, be yourself. Agents want to hire models who are interesting, professional, smart, and unique. The better the model can present itself, the easier it will be for it to land jobs.

  • Have interests outside of modeling that you can talk about. This will make you more memorable to designers and agents.
  • Learn about the fashion industry and be able to speak articulately about it globally.

Part 3 of 3: Becoming the Best Model You Can Be

Become a Photo Model Step 8
Become a Photo Model Step 8

Step 1. Enroll in a class

Modeling classes can be a good idea to make connections in the industry, learn about the business, and get feedback on your look and photos. In a modeling class, you'll learn how to effectively pose, walk, and promote yourself to secure most jobs.

  • Make sure to research the class before you register. Some modeling classes are scams and should be avoided.
  • You don't need to take a class to be a successful model, but it's a good way to start.
Become a Photo Model Step 9
Become a Photo Model Step 9

Step 2. Practice posing in front of a mirror

The actors and singers practice in front of the mirror, so the models should do the same. It is important to be able to see what your face looks like when you make different facial expressions. Practice posing in front of the mirror every day for five minutes, and you will notice that you will have greater control of your facial muscles and your expressions.

  • Practice smiling without squinting or showing a lot of gum.
  • Focus each practice session on perfecting a facial expression.
Become a Photo Model Step 10
Become a Photo Model Step 10

Step 3. Prepare your repertoire of poses

Each model should have ten distinguishable poses that they can perform on command. Practice in front of the mirror until you have ten separate poses, then take care of transitioning between each one.

  • Everyone's body is different, so focus on finding poses that bring out the best features of yours, while hiding your flaws.
  • Browse magazines to find inspiration for new poses.
  • Make sure you have a pose that makes you look great while wearing a bathing suit or lingerie.
Become a Photo Model Step 11
Become a Photo Model Step 11

Step 4. Take care of your body

As a model, your body is your most important resource, so it is important to keep it in excellent shape. Create an exercise regimen that you like so that you are more likely to want to keep doing it.

  • The models do all kinds of exercises, from yoga to spinning classes. There is no one right way to stay in shape, so focus on doing exercises that you enjoy doing.
  • Try to exercise at least four times a week.
Become a Photo Model Step 12
Become a Photo Model Step 12

Step 5. Eat properly

Models keep busy schedules and spend a lot of time traveling, so eating properly is essential. Focus on consuming a lot of protein, such as egg whites, Greek yogurt, or protein shakes.

  • Drink water constantly to help you have energy and keep your skin clean.
  • Supplement your diet with additional vitamins.
  • Drink green juice for more nutrients.


  • If a modeling agency asks you for an advance payment at some point, be careful. This is a scam, and you should not work with these types of agencies.
  • Don't put yourself in situations where you feel insecure. If you feel like a photographer or representative is taking advantage of you, walk away.

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