Tips for making it into the modeling industry and the careers available for you
The modelling industry is perhaps one of the most glamorised industries but breaking into it isn’t easy. It is hard work to get in and even more work to stay in it. So when applying to a modelling industry is it important to get certain basics right the first time.
But rest assured that once you have secured your spot in this field, the opportunities are endless. Several local models have been selected for pageants regionally and internationally and are exposed to a wide range of career opportunities from ambassadorial positions, modelling with the biggest names in the fashion industry to acting in various films.
Below are some useful tips that will ensure you make a lasting impression with more than your gorgeous and unique bodily features in Guyana’s modelling industry.
Local modelling agencies often complain of some of the painstaking mistakes made by applicants and they all urge that aspiring models keep it simple.
When applying via email or otherwise, it is important to note that any modelling agency wants your basic stats such as measurements for bust, waist, hips and height, age, hair and eye colour and shoe size.
Modelling agencies are rarely interested in how long you have dreamed of being a model, or how many times you were featured so if you have extensive professional modelling or acting experience, say so. Very briefly.
Include contact information at a minimum, your telephone number. If you want to include your address and email address you can, but you must have your telephone number.
LOOK like your photos!
The complaints have been numerous when it comes to models who submitted photographs of themselves and when they show up for an appointment they have a totally different hair colour or style. Sometimes the shots make the model appear way slimmer than they actually are. You never want to be disappointing to an agent in person. It’s your job to be honest and ensure that your photographs are not over edited.
In the modelling industry, punctuality is key. Tardiness is a major pet peeve of most agents and it is just not tolerated! There are no exceptions to this one! (In this business “on time” is 15 minutes early if you are working) Put some thought into where you’re going and plan a route ahead of time. In the age of online direction, there is just no excuse anymore. Distance is also NEVER an excuse. If an agent can’t trust you to meet them on time, they certainly are not going to trust you with their clients. However, on the other side of the coin, getting there too early is also a nuisance. Don’t enter the agency for the appointment more than 5 minutes early. It’s just as bothersome to have someone hanging around a busy agency as it is to be kept waiting for them.
This one is so elementary but still worth mentioning. Bottom line, you don’t look like a working talent if you don’t carry a day planner and writing utensil. Be sure to pay attention to details and take notes of almost everything you find is important. Above all, be observant for it helps in the long run.
Know how to market yourself
Be realistic about where you fall in the market. If you’re a 5’4 woman in her 40′s you should NOT go fashion/glamour in all of your shots. Nor, should you show up in person with this look. It’s not the agencies job to educate you. Before you invest in photos, get a good sense of the type of work you may be right for and try to mimic that look. Also show up to the agency with this look. Agencies need to see it to believe; in order to sell it.
Submit to the correct agencies
Investigate which agencies book your type and don’t waste time submitting to agencies that don’t book it. If you’re petite, see which agencies actually have that division and so on. It’s a waste of postage and time to just send your materials off to everyone.
Many potential models walk into agencies with material that is not quite marketable as they are. But, if the agency has a real interest in them, they will give them invaluable feedback and suggestions then ask them to follow up. You would be shocked at the percentage of models and talent that do not do so.
Don’t argue, accept criticism!
It takes a certain type of person to handle this business. You need a strong sense of self to handle criticism. Admittedly, agents can have a harsh tongue. You can talk to 10 agents and get 10 different opinions. Listen to the information given and keep the stuff that makes sense. Don’t begin jumping through hoops after one agency makes a suggestion. If you start to hear the same comment from several agencies, then you know that you need to act on it. Don’t take criticism to heart. It’s part of the business and the learning process in ANY career. Don’t argue with agents, try to change their minds or put them on the defence. If an agent passes on you, don’t question them. Simply thank them for their time, swallow hard and move on to the next appointment. There are plenty more opportunities out there. Go find them!
Prepare for your interview if you get one. Practice your photo face in front of a mirror, practice your walk and flick through magazines to get some idea of how models pose.