Friday, July 31, 2009

B4 Modeling casting Sephora Times Square Touch-up

Next time you are near Times Square and you have a modeling casting and you need a touch-up before you have two choices depending on which way you are going. You can go to Sephora on Broadway and 43rd or 42 and 7th! I usually DO go to Sephora before my modeling castings and check myself in their mirrors. I do like the Sephora brand of makeup as well which doesn't get enough props. It is good stuff. Lipsticks are a fav. I usually go in Sephora to buy i.d bare Minerals powder. I wear SPF 15 Suncreen in Medium usually all year round.

Other things on my face and body right now:
LUSH products, Makeup Forever, Revlon, Boots, Rimmel, Maybelline, Wet n' Wild, Styli-Style...oh god the list goes, but I am basically simple with how heavy I do my makeup. Light, airy, I don't over do the blush.

I always forget to put on eye-shadow. I have this huge case from Sephora (see above). I gotta get that going on.

Model Fact: Did you know a model...

needs photos before she gets an agency? Yup. This past week I did a radio podcast segment on modeling compcards and I hope you got to catch that segment.

Many models are mislead to think the "agency does everything" -

This is not so.

The model, the person who wants to model, has to get professional photos, and make the comp card, and mail it to the agencies. Print modeling agencies do not have open calls typically. Therefore you have to mail your compcard in the postal mail. It is a major misconception and I wanted to just make sure you know the facts!

If you have sent photos through an agency website, if you have never sent professional photos to an agencies actually mailing addresss then maybe you should. It is the difference between having an agency and not having one.

These days a model makes her marketing material, mails it, uses it at castings and is more hands-on with her pursuits.

Your compcard is your model life line.

I hope this helps,

Making a modeling comp card-Phone Number question

A girl recently asked me: Should a phone number be printed on your compcard?

No. Mainly because you MIGHT end up freelancing with many agencies. It is not a bad thing. It is normal to freelance with print modeling agencies and print agencies to welcome it. I worked with 5 agencies at once freelancing in NYC and using the same comp card.

On the card you DO NOT put your phone number, email on your compcard. No needed. And do not put a link to a "social site". NEVER!

What will happen is that when one agency sends you out to a casting you "write" or use an Avery or white sticker and put the agencies name on the sticker and compcard,also sometimes the agency will give you a sticker to put on the compcard with the agencies phone number on it.

When I go to a casting for a "parts" modeling job for example I put "PARTS and then 212-etc. On the compcard for the casting.

As a shorter model, or for a girl who is not fashion height or for a girl who wants to work within print, you might find one print agency is not enough and also you will find that the agency might not even offer to make your compcards at all. Which is why it is good to make your own and expect to do so. You might end up working with a few agencies but that doesn't mean each will call every single day with a casting, booking,etc.

Just have printed your name on the card. Could be your first name, first name middle name. Full name.

Once you have your compcards mail them out to agencies. The first time you mail out the cards you could send two cards. One has YOUR phone number on it so the agency can contact you. And one doesn't, so they can keep it on file, mail it to a client, but if they want to work with you they will ask for more cards. Then you mail them more cards without your number on it because by then they will be expecting the cards.

I hope this helps, :)


Want to be a model, go to the Internet-BAD MOVE

I am not a fan of internet social sites because professional photographers and agencies are not scouting talent on the web,-they are just too busy booking their models and shooting professional jobs- it is just truly a waste of time.

Also you want quality and much that is out there on the web is truly amateur. In my memoir Almost 5'4" I do confront my own mistakes with the web and I hope my mistakes on the web can inspire you of what NOT to do. I think the book is also a warning for girls about the misconceptions of the Internet.

To be a model, I would get a compcard, mail it to agencies and strive to work with a professional photographer. You won't find a professional on the web. The more you strive to get professional photos the better for your pursuits. Then get a compcard and mail, mail, mail, mail, it to agencies. The best way to start modeling is NOT on the internet.

Real agents don't have 45 minutes to talk to models

A girl asked me recently about an agency talking to her on the phone for 45 minutes as asking her to drive 4 hours to meet them. She asked if it is a scam.

I said yes. Real agents don't have 45 minutes to talk to models they don't even work with yet. Sounds like something you should NOT do. Do not drive four hours.

Modeling Agencies in Miami and South Florida

Right now working on a how-to-modeling manual/book based on this blog, but I wanted to share a Miami/ Florida highlight for agencies for the shorter girl, print models, to pursue. In modeling you want to have the best, so get professional photos, get a professional headshot, and this means investing in your self and goals. I would try to hit up these agencies... It might not happen over night but I would strive for it!

NO agency will typically say they work with short models, but the way for shorter models to work with agencies is notice more than your height, or lack of, and notice what you do have and market that to agencies. Print agencies love personality, smiles, great skin, and great hair, focus on your assets. These agencies do not flaunt that they work with shorter models, but they do work with print models which is an area of modeling a shorter girl has a chance.

As your goals: Mail directly your modeling comp card. By Postal mail. No email.

I was working over time with with Latins, World of Kids and Las Olas, but I moved back to NYC.

Get a compcard, you could try this place in Miami perhaps.

A Flip card would be good.

Or They know me there, say Isobella Jade refered you. Just make sure you see the proof sent to you in the postal mail, to see colors in person, and then approve the card after.

They are good about getting you what you need and want.

Gotta get back to writing now,


How do you model being so short

A girl recently asked me "How do you model being so short?" This was part of my reply:

I know what I have that the modeling industry can use. The modeling industry is the advertising industry so I think of ways I can use what I do have to get ahead. I think of ads and brands and products and the types of modeling jobs I can realistically get and target my photos in that style. I make my compcards and I strived to be professional. I never gave up and this is how it is has worked for me. :)

Thursday, July 30, 2009

stay away of amateur photographers

With the Internet comes The Amateurs. This means a girl has to do her homework to not be misled into a mistake and end up working with an amateur photographer. Stay aware and away of amateur photographers. Those people who are not really photographers, but these “guys with cameras.” Working with an amateur will bring you straight to amateur-ville. Stay out that place.

Strive to work with professionalism. You will get ahead. Getting ahead means investing in your goals and the more you strive to get the professionalism the better for your pursuits.

Professional photographers and agencies are NOT looking for models on the internet; they simply do not have time. Also it is un-rely-able to find aspiring models online because also you do not know how professional they are and many girls who use internet sites are just "showing off photos". Or that is the way it comes off. Anyways in my memoir Almost 5'4" I share my transformation between amateur and professional, between the internet and agencies and the ad campaign in my book and I think you will like it and could relate.

Models need their compcards like a painter needs his brush

Like an artist that has to buy his paint and paint brush before he gets his gallery have to buy your compcards, get professional photos, work with a professional photographer and be professional to get ahead.

focus on the things you love about yourself

I might be lucky that I am petite, but I am not perfect.

I often think about what if we "people" had no faces, what if we just were not a nose, eyes, lips, how much do you weigh, where is your flaw humanity?... what would society be like. What could we judge eachother on then?

It is also interesting to think about how our looks have nothing to do with our brains, or our heart and how it beats. It is both that keep us alive and able to do what we want to do. Not our perfect teeth. :)

We are a judgemental world, a material world, and it is easy to forget what "being human " is. Just focus on the things you love about yourself, it could simply be 'how you interact with people and say hello to someone else and ask how their day is. Loving the "type" of person you are or "knowing the type of person" you want to be can brighten up your life and others.


I am not cool with model social networks

There are these terrible, no good, very bad amateur model social networks, that charge money to join, or these websites where girls can flash smiles or anything else with a sign that reads “Will get naked for prints” -or basically. It is sad. Please don't join these sites. Please stray away from amateur-ville if you really want to model.

I am really not cool with these amateur model social networks and I stress that a girl skips downloading, uploading and flaunting themselves so casually, without thinking of the negative side of it.

The internet is like glue. Super glue. It sticks. Stay and does not delete. So beware and careful. Mistakes happen. I have made my share. But I got over it and moved on. Chase bigger things, aim higher, and get more.

Get professional photos, get a compcard made, get a headshot printed, mail it to modeling agencies. There is no other way to get ahead. The work is the work.
If you don't hear back Try again. It is not easy to work with the professional agencies, so don't expect it to happen over night. Keep striving. Forget letting a website "make you a model'?????? It doesn't happen.

You have to make your self one.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

They say you can model but is this a scam?

Modeling conventions, modeling hotel meet and greet: They are all Scams.

This post is taken from an email I recently wrote to give the scoop on model scams.

Keep in mind company, agency, or website that asks or proclaims: "Can you model" "be a model!" "Are you ready to be a star?" or any other "teaser" etc, is a scam.

Professional agencies don't ask if you can model.

These days reality TV and the media has made it where "everyone and their sister" wants to be a model or in entertainment so many so-called agencies take advantage of this mindset these young aspiring girls have.

A professional agency will NOT force you to use their photographer or printing service, they will not pay a monthly fee to be on the website, or charge you at all to work with them. A professional agency might suggest but if they think you can book work with them and you are ambitious, they will at least work with the compcard you have. Like like mentioned how Gene worked with mine in my memoir.

Strive to find a professional agency ok. They are out there. It might take more time to get in the door with a "real" agency, but it is better not to be fooled.

A professional agency receives your compcard in the mail, YOU mail it to them, you submit your comp card by postal mail, and then if they are interested in working with you they would then call you. They might want to see you in person or they might just send you to a casting, a go-see to see how you do. And then just keep your card on file. I have had experiences where I did not meet the agency until I booked a job with them. It is normal.

Also many girls expect this personal attention. Too much "ahhh and ooo'ing" can be scamful and an aspiring model should remember that actually your print modeling booker/agent might not become your best friend, good friend, etc, a modeling agent is apart of your pursuit, but the agent /model relationship is business.

So just beware, it is a self-made world today and there are many so-called agencies out there, so please remember to becareful of scams.

I hope this helps,


Modeling castings, not being the perfect fit

Went to a casting for jeans today, even though they were too big, I didn’t just say “oh they are too big!” I put them on and said, “I’ll give them a try, I can make it work.” SNAP, Snap. It is always better if possible to try, or did you walk all that way to just say “Oh they are too big!” Trying anyways can get you the job sometimes. It also shows you want the job and you are capable to try even if you are not the exact size or fit.

Then I was to the Apple Store, then Barnes and Noble where a guy tried to hit on me by asking "how can I lose weight,what books should I read?" I told him I don't know but the diet section would be a good start, then he asked "what do you do" I said I do a lot of things but you should read my memoir Almost 5'4", it is in this store. I wanted to smack him but maybe he bought the book.

If you want to check it out, click the cover here:

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Modeling comp cards are still in demand despite the web

Isobella shares why you need a modeling compcard and how the internet has not taken over the print model marketing needs for a model. A tangible-can-hold-in-your-hand-compcard and headshot is still needed and a website is not enough. A girl who wants to model needs a compcard. She will share how to make one and why you need it.

Tune in Weds at 4pm or listen to the archive anytime!

It's not always about how long your legs are

To me modeling is like being a runner. You might not step out on the track as the fastest but over time, you can win races. Persistence. A short chick can still run the 400 hurdlers. I did it. It's not always about how long your legs's about your will.

The Beautiful Life - If you like Model TV Shows

I don't watch a ton of TV, I do not know all the actors out there. Or names of shows, but this one might interest you.

I had heard about the show but this article in WWD this morning caught my eye, on the show called The Beautiful Life. I might not watch it die-hard, but if you like Model TV Shows, shows about models, you might like it:

(However I do think modeling is NOT such a beautiful life, it is a life of a lot of hard work actually. Not just handbags and the latest fashions. )

Monday, July 27, 2009

For everyone "the top" is somewhere different

For everyone "the top" is somewhere different. This is what "the top" looks like for me, and what it isn't to me as well:

Success to me is not found in holding a certain handbag, or wearing a certain label, success is not just a paycheck or a "title". I think success is when you love yourself and accept your flaws. I think it is when you overcome your own doubts, fears and claim your own goals. I think "the top" is found when you seek out opportunities, make them happen, become who you want to be. Then after you reach your goals, you make a new one and effect and help others strive to be where they want to be as well. To me that is a successful person.

New Video Creating Modeling Photos

New Creating Modeling Photos Video, Isobella shares tips and advice for aspiring models of all heights and creating photos that sell you and what you do have. Create photos that speak about what you "can" model.

Modeling portfolios-only show the good stuff

Only show the good stuff, the best shots you have inside your portfolio.

When it comes to buying a portfolio: I like the brand Pratt, for modeling portfolios the size is 9.5 by 12.5 and the prints you put inside are 9 by 11 inches. This is the basic size, I think mainly because a magazine tearsheet (page) featuring the model would fit in a portfolio this size comfortably perhaps.

Modeling compcards- do it yourself to get ahead

Three girls asked me today about compcards. What is more important the compcard or portfolio? And should I mail Headshots, snap shots or a compcard? So,here is the scoop on compcards and why you need to make your own. And not assume the agency will make it for you. Making your compcard, mailing it, and not waiting, is actually how you get the agency these days.

It is easy to think that the agency does all that for you...but actually.. YOU as the model should make your own. Like an artist needs an art portfolio a model needs her compcard. It is your best marketing tool. A comp card is the more professional choice. You will have to get a portfolio as well, but at this new stage a compcard is the first thing to make. And make your own with photos that flatter you and fit "commercial print modeling"- it is best to target your compcard to the agencies you want to work with with similar photos that their models have...ALSO BEWARE: many agencies rip off aspiring models who do not know better on compcard prices and it can be a real let down and scam. The compcard is what will get you infront of an agency, as many print agencies DO NOT have open calls. You have to physically mail your compcard by mail to get a meeting/ The compcard will also be useful at castings, auditions, etc. Having your own, is a way to keep control over your pursuits. Otherwise "the agency" will own the shots, and compcard and you might feel restrained and like you are unable to self promote when needed because you have the agency complete control over the compcards and now you have nothing in your hands. So I think it is ALWAYS important to make your own. They will be later mailed to the agencies and then used for castings.

As you will find in my memoir, I always took control over my pursuits and found the “importance in making my own compcards” always…I still do…

You can find reasonable rates at and do it yourself, however do make sure your shots do include at least one smile shot. Agencies want to see personality the most for print modeling which is what shorter girls of all ages can find opportunities pursuing.

Sizes: A comp card can vary in size, but 5.5 x 8.5 is a typical size.

I would go to a professional printing service, keep in mind that a service that prints headshots usually also prints comp cards. So you could research “headshot printing “ or comp card printing.

Also when printing your compcard you need to have your photos at 300 DPI, this is printable resolution for printing photos, photography. And the images should be between 8- 15 inches because the image will be fit to the compcard by the printing service, but it needs to be big enough to print clearly and professionally. On my blog on the right size there are a list of printing services I have used and like in NYC, along with ALWAYS< ALWAYS< ALWAYS see a proof, in your hand, physically in your hand, mailed, or in person, before accepting the proof for the full print run. Colors can look different n the computer screen vs. printing sometimes. So do not approve a comp card or headshot until you see it in person printed.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Are you a short model, or just not as tall

Are you short, or just as not as tall? It is all a state of mind and how you use your marketing mentality to get ahead.

If you know what you can model then being short isn't a small difference.
If you know how to market yourself and use what you do have to get ahead, then your height isn't such a factor to determine your success.
If you take the time, measure your realistic goals against the work it will take, you will find that there is possibility in being self-made.
If you are not a afraid to take a chance on yourself you will find your doubts dissolve.
Focus on who you can be and accept ambitiously what you are not. Be bold and brave with your choices, when you put yourself out there, show up, and put yourself in a situation for opportunities…you just might find even more than what you hoped.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Saving money on fashion as a model or girl on the go

Paychecks for a model are not every week. Often it takes months to be paid for a gig; therefore saving money on clothing is essential. Here are 5 ways I spend less.

1. I shop selectively and I plan my shopping. Shopping when I am bored or just because usually doesn’t result in a good purchase for me. To prevent buying something that will just sit in the small closet, which is very easy to do living in New York City, it is best to look at what you do have and consider how you can upgrade a simple dress. Don’t forget a boring black dress can be spiced up with a belt or a cardigan, or maybe even cut that longer dress into a mini before going out and dropping a wad of cash on something new.

2. If I see a dress I love in a store I try it on, but many times I have found that the dress is sold cheaper on the internet, even within buying it the same season. Do your research before you purchase. Shopping online for items that are over $100 in store can be found cheaper online sometimes.

3. Handbags and shoes are items that can dress up a simple look and cost the least, so I spend most of my money on these items. I usually am carrying a “clutch conversation piece.” I also love meeting aspiring designers and I go to tradeshows and events in the city and meet the designers, it is fun to wear a piece when you know who made it. Usually you pay less too!

4. I don’t like to over-do my jewelry and I spend the least on it. Shopping for jewelry can be tricky, especially if you are on a budget. Did you know there are also great finds at jewelry sample sales, trades shows and even street craft shows? The styles I wear most are from Simon G, Carnelian Knoll, St.John, Judith Jack, The Metropolitan Museum of Art Shop has some beautiful pieces for day and night for reasonable prices. H&M also does a good job with accessories and jewelry.

5. The basics last longer. I have learned that those fabulous designer shoes are gorgeous and fun to wear, but typically all I wear are my black heels. A way to save money is to focus on buying items that you love and really will wear. And instead of buying yourself another pair you might not wear, buy something for someone else. It is easy to treat yourself again, but there is a joy that shouldn’t be forgotten in giving the gift of a great deal.

Print modeling and talent agencies in NYC

Here is a list of some talent agencies in New York City that models that are not of fashion height could submit compcards to for consideration. DO NOT submit by email or an online form it is unprofessional and you will not be considered as likely as you will be from a mailed submission with a stamp and envelope. Mail your photos by mail! And as I have stressed by a Call Sheet at Barnes and Noble in the magazine section under the TV and Film magazines it will help you for a list for mailing talent agencies and modeling agencies. There are many scams popping up on each corner each day dying to scam you so becareful. It does not take much to set up shop and call yourself an agency. However there ARE legit print modeling and talent agencies out there. Here are some you could consider submitting photos to. Observe the websites, know what the agency already works with, understand the style of the photos that the models have and create ones similar, and submit by postal mail.

Atlas Talent Agency -

CESD Talent Agency -

Extra Talent (TV Film Background work(

Flaunt Models

Here is a list of suggested commercial print modeling agencies as well.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Photoshoots could be scams, be careful

Having a photoshoot set up by an agency might sound like something special but actually it could be a scam. It is better to sometimes stick to marketing yourself. And being more hands on with your images do-it-yourself style. Or get the opinion of the agency but do not feel inclined that you MUST work with their photographer or printing service. It is a hands-on=do-it-yourself world and you can model without a rip off but you do have to be marketing savvy and expect the work that it involves sometimes. Keep striving to find professional and you will.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Some Allure lovin for Model Life today

Model Life, my graphic novel due in the fall just got some lovin! So excited about this.

Here is the link to the plug on their Daily Beauty Reporter blog:

Photos on the modeling agency website (video)

Isobella adds another aspect of "is this modeling agency legit" with insight on paying to be on a modeling agency website and why you should not in this video.

Is this modeling agency legit video

Isobella shares the important of being apart of the process of becoming a model and how to tell if an agency is legit or a big fat scam.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The Battle of Models and the Internet

Isobella shares the battle of the internet and models and how to tell what it legit and what is not when it comes to agencies and photography and how the web can help and hurt you.

Weds the 22nd of July at 2pm.

Tune in live here, or listen to the archive anytime:

Isobella is the author of Almost 5'4" which you can find on her website or in bookstores now.

Isobella Jade reads from Almost 5'4"

It is best to turn down my podcast radio show on the right side of the blog to hear the reading better. This video captures me reading an excerpt of my memoir and it is a little long therefore I could not put it on Youtube. Oh well. I added it to my Myspace and also put it on my Facebook, and hopefully wherever you are and how ever you social media you can check this out. Sit back and enjoy the reading! :)

Click the cover to check out Almost 5'4" here:

Monday, July 20, 2009

Why having a compcard helps models

Another reason why it s good to manage your self and photos is because it limits scams. Legit agencies will at least work with the photos you have and the compcard you have made and try to market you with it. It is one thing for an agency to suggest a photographer but it is another to force you to work with the photographer in able to work with the agency. This is a scam.

Making your own compcard is important but it also involves having interest in learning and understanding what a model needs for photos. It is easy to think "someone else will handle this" but this is not so. The reason many girls give up is because they stick to thinking people will do things for them. The "discovery" and being unrealistic, letting the images in the media contort their mind on the reality. Modeling is lonely. It is a pursuit that involves expecting to be very hands on with it and relying on no one many times.

Be careful when it comes to working with an agency. Go with your gut. Don't be too desperate to get a modeling agency, don't fall for scams. Be a smart model. Get ahead sooner. Know what you want to do, when you meet the agency speak up, share what type of modeling you are interested in. And be realistic about it.
Remember if it seems too good to be true it might be!

Modeling in a small town tips- Syracuse, NY

If you are living in a small town, or smaller city like Syracuse, NY or the surrounding areas modeling can seem impossible.

While visiting my family here I am reminded of the first chapter of Almost 5'4" when I wrote about how I googled the word model during a boring summer in Syracuse, NY- it makes me think about present day and how the internet has made a major impression on young girls and females of all ages and how internet sites might seem to be the only option for a girl who wants to model. However I strongly suggest NOT using it to promote yourself as a model mainly because although the internet might seem "where all the action is to network with a photographer" I believe (even through my own modeling mistakes you will find in my memoir) that the internet is the wrong place to start your modeling pursuits. In a small town it might seem like the only option. No modeling agencies. Not many photographers that do photography professionally but here are some suggestions:

1. Go to a local college or research to see if there is a photography department at a near by college.
2. Google Headshot or portrait photographer + your city
3. Go to a local photo lab and ask if they can suggest a professional photographer that shoots headshots.
4. Go to a craft show and mingle with aspiring accessory designers jewelry, handbags, scarves and see if they might need a model for their catalog, etc.
5. Stop by a local mom and pop hair salon or store, boutique and ask if they ever use models for their advertising or window display ads?

If you want to seriously call yourself a model you have to do legit modeling work and to do so in a smaller town you have to be inventive sometimes, and not just stare at yourself and comments on a social site.

Skip modeling contests on the internet, skip internet modeling sites, because if you really want to model the REAL modeling work doesn't happen by showing your photos on a computer screen.

Almost 5'4" can be found BN stores on RT 31 and Dewitt or here on my website.

Click the cover to check out Almost 5'4" here:

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The work of a model is not just to look pretty

Quote of the day for aspiring models:

"I suggest to make your own compcard and headshots. NEVER pay an agency for photos but do expect the work it takes to create your own marketing material. Handouts can mean model scams."

Thursday, July 16, 2009

How a short girl gets ahead as a model

A girl on facebook sent me an Instant Message this was part of our chat about shorter models and finding opportunities:

"I think modeling for a shorter girl is really about knowing how to market yourself, it is about knowing what you CAN model, and focusing on getting photos that represent this. If you only focus on your height you will not find modeling work but if you focus on what you do have that a product, brand, company might want to work with you can find opportunities. So first I would think about what you CAN actually model. Notice ads that are not so fashion forward because modeling is not just fashion forward. Print modeling is the most active area of modeling. And you see girls of all heights, ethnicities and sizes."

Then she said she had been trying but was having a hard time so I asked her:
But do you have your own compcard and headshot? Have you mailed it to print modeling agencies more than once?

See it takes ALOT of work to model, get a modeling agency and book work as a shorter girl, but you have to put aside the height factor and focus on what you CAN model, focus on "WHAT IS MARKETABLE ABOUT ME." And "WHAT ADS COULD I SEE MYSELF IN REALISTICALLY?"

I mentioned "making her own compcard."

"Well I think it is best for a shorter girl to make her own compcard. A must. Without it how can you market yourself? It takes a lot of work to launch yourself as a model! More than the internet, more than the games on these model-sites too..(just know any sort of show off your photos "modeling website is not real modeling"), it is best to get professional fast and a compcard, get a headshot done, put some thought into your photos, be picky about the photographer you work with, and really research the good print agencies that work with print models."

"Aside what you see on reality tv and within fashion the shorter model, the print model many times has to be her own agent, and when an agency forces you to use their photographer, and printing services it can actually be a rip off or scam so be careful. It is best to always make your own marketing material and not rush into signing ANY contracts. Stick to being non-exclusive until you have some experience and freelance with many print modeling agencies because one agency is hard to count on for a new model with no experience. Modeling for a shorter girl within print is different than fashion modeling agencies that pick up girls, house them, and all that is a totally different hands on world for a shorter girl focusing on print modeling and she has to be prepared for the grit, the hands on real work involved."

Later in our conversation I went on to share..."The main reason these not-as-tall-girls-find opportunities is because they have produced the right photos that sell them in a commercial way for a print agency. And a lot of self marketing is involved. ALOT of hands on work. Researching the right agencies, creating the right photos, making compcards, mailing, not being afraid to simply try."

I ended with..
:) "..if you want something, especially in modeling, especially if you are short, you have to keep your head up. be smart about it, and really focus on the best ways to market you :) goodluck!"

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

New Modeling Photography tips video-just posted

Isobella shares photography tips for shorter-than-average models and she wrote about her photography mistakes that she overcame in her memoir Almost 5'4". Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Photoshoot for Almost 5'4" today!

Just did a photoshoot for Almost 5'4", went to some of the neighborhoods mentioned in the book & shot some kickin stuff. Atmospheres include SoHo,outside the apple store (read in chapter 13), Harlem (prologue and chapter 15), Astoria (Chapter 13), and Brooklyn Heights(chapter 3-9), all featured in the book. Shot on film on Black and white, so excited to see results during our breakfast meeting tomorrow. Will see the contact-sheets. Shooting digital just isn't the same. Dropped film off by Union Square, saw Almost 5'4" sitting proud in BN looking so HOT!

I am so excited to see these photos, especially since the story of the shots co-sides with Almost 5'4".

It felt so good to shoot on film today. It is a more planned out process, each shot is delivered, precise. We had 9 shots left towards the end at the last location in Brooklyn Heights, and it was a test, a challenge, to nail them and make each one amazing, I love the pressure of making something look amazing so much. Could do it every single day, and in our digital world wish more photographers would shoot film. I wish these camera-holders would learn about shutter speeds and lighting and all the good stuff that makes a photo timeless and a well told story within the photography.

"Don't just take my photo, tell my story"

Click the cover to check out Almost 5'4" here:

Should an aspiring model contact brands directly?

A girl asked me recently about contacting brands and if she should as a new model, this was my reply which you might also find helpful:

Without some great experience and a fantastic headshot, I would not submit to brands at or magazine editors yourself. Mainly because you want to show great quality photos, photos that are well done, and you only want to show the best of you to anyone in the modeling, advertising, magazine business, etc. So if you do not have experience I would focus on getting your photos to be as quality as possible first.
Then mail agencies. And when it comes to brands, stick to aspiring brands.
A girl who wants to model should try to work with a good photographer to get a very nice headshot. Then submit it to print agencies. If you want, to get some experience you could try with aspiring designers, hit up a tradeshow, craft fair even and mingle with jewelry designers or handbag designers, accessories are best. Ask if they need a model. Perhaps you could be in their catalog. And continue to mail modeling agencies your compcard, headshot, new images and as you get better photos send those as well. You see, it might take more than one mailing to get an agency to call you back, but you want to keep updating your photos, improving as a model so working with aspiring brands is a great way for an aspiring model to grow her experience. Mailing the agencies is important. Without mailing an agency you will miss out on the bigger jobs. Top brands, magazine, etc, use agency models the majority of the time. So knowing this, it is important to market yourself with photos that a print agency can use. Of course you can try to market yourself to smaller or growing brands, try to get some experience modeling, and research to find the person who hires models at a growing company, or the photographer who shoots for a certain brand, however this does involve ALOT of research and work and marketing. So I would say, without any experience to focus on getting a nice headshot, and to hit up the modeling agencies first, and try to network with aspiring brands if you can for some experience. I hope this helps. -Isobella

Getting modeling jobs tips and marketing

A girl recently asked me: Should i try and get with an agency to get me jobs or is there a way you can do it all yourself like sending to advertisement companies ect. i was asked to do this commercial print camp for this company page parkes but they asked for $1000 and I saw on your site you should not pay for all that stuff.

In my experience you should never pay for anything basically but your compcards and for those I make my own. I then give compcards to the agencies I work with.

When you say Advertising companies do you mean ad agencies or the brands themselves?

To work with brands directly I would start small and work your way. Experience will bring opportunity. For example approach smaller brands, aspiring brands, jewelry designers, handbag designers and ask to model for their catalog, online, print or linesheets,tradeshows. Get in the mix with aspiring designers and companies. Not only is it great to surround yourself with creative energy but you will hopefully get some good experience from it and good photos that show you "modeling" something. Once you havesome experience/ aka a credible portfolio you should market yourself to an agency with it. Your experience can also help you get an agency working with you. In smaller cities an aspiring model could contact a local magazine editor, and an aspiring model can do that with magazines such as Marie Claire and Glamour but I don't want to get ahead of ourselves if you do not have marketable photos yet...or a compcard. It is possible to self hustle, but it does take showing quality photos and knowing how to market to each agency, brand, magazine, etc. If the brand is a handbag company then you will want to show them a photo of you holding a handbag..see.

It is also best not to get strung up on the money at the start, you might model for an aspiring jewelry designer and not get much pay but if the photos, photographer is good, then it will help you and could lead to more opportunity.

Also being VERY picky about the photographers you work with. It is better to shoot only a few things that will benefit your portfolio and where you want to be, than just randomly shoot with no plan and waste time. So be very picky about that.

As for ad agencies it is hard to get in the door as a new model with an art director at an ad agency to model for their client's ad's, etc. So it is best to work with modeling agencies because the art director will most likely call the modeling agencies and have their models go to a casting for a certain brand, ad campaign, etc.

I hope this helps! :)

Monday, July 13, 2009

Isobella Jade at the LUSH store in SoHo Video

Isobella shares an in-store experience at LUSH in SoHo

Isobella on Fashion Modeling (video)

Isobella shares her thoughts on fashion and the short girl.

print modeling has no age

A girl recently told me on Facebook she wants to get into print modeling. We have exchanged some messages and I think this one from me to her will also inspire you.

"Modeling has no age, I went to a casting today for a nail company for a nail polish ad and there were women there in their late 30's, and grandmothers are modeling! :) So think about the ads you want to be in and target your photos around them. Also notice the websites of the print agencies you want to work with, notice the types of photos the girls have, and try to create something similar. When you know what the works with,and how to market yourself it is ALOT easier. Some agencies have told me I have a young look, some market me as spanish, some send me out for body part jobs, so it is all about knowing all angles you can market yourself in, or the main one, and pushing that look, and getting it to the right agencies. Make a compcard and mail it girl!"


Friday, July 10, 2009

Photography tips & Casting for hand modeling

So I have a casting on Monday for a well known nail care brand. Which is cool but it inspires me to write a post here about the importance of "showing in your photos what you CAN model."

Many girls often write me curious about the types of photos they need to start modeling, my advice: Think about what you want to model. Create photos based around that. Of course be realistic, if you are only five feet tall don't be too stiff, still, and *itchy in your photos, do create shots that show you modeling a handbag, a shoe, but don't go too high, high end. Agents want to see you can model products but the castings you will be sent on for print will most likely NOT be products found in Vogue.

I would not show logos or a brands name in a photo but a shot that shows you modeling "something" is important. See photos here:

For the casting I have on Monday I will be bringing and showing in my portfolio the best shots I have of my hands. I will bring tearsheets from hand modeling jobs but also some of these shots I will show I have created, art directed to get, printed myself. No matter what you want to model: It is important to be incontrol of what you want, and if you can model "something" you need to show it in your photos.

What you show in your photos tells the agent, editor, art director: This girl can do the job. So you want to show images that represent how you, your look, relates to the jobs and casting you are going for.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Modeling agency: why you shouldn't wait

There is no perfect day, outfit or hair day that should tell you when you should meet an agency, a girl recently told me she was about to set up a meeting with an agency but she was concerned about how she gained 5 lbs of muscle. She was going to postpone the meeting until it went away. This is what I told her:

I don't think you should worry about this 5 lbs of muscle, infact being petite it is good that you ARE tone, you will look leaner and longer in photos. Also you could use your muscle to your advantage and mention you would be great for fitness ass. Fitness modeling these days doesn't mean being ripped, it means being tone, and having some muscle could actually help you book a job. I would go to the meeting proud of who you are. 5 pounds of muscle...many people would cut off their arm just to get that! Don't postpone it anymore. Go. Don't self analyze THAT much. Think of ads, products and brands that use models off all heights and sizes. Analyze That. The less you talk about your height and what you consider your flaws, the less the agent will notice anyways…so focus only on sharing THE GOOD, what you CAN offer. Agents want to hear that more than about your concerns about muscle. :)


P.s: An agency tip to consider, if this agency doesn't end up working out...just keep going. Keep trying...don't let anything be the end-all. You never know what's around the corner tomorrow.

If my leg can model so can yours

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Modeling is tough, keep the fire going.

The answers are not always given to you
You have to seek it out sometimes
You don't win them all
but how boring life would be if you did,
Trying once doesn't always bring results
you have to try throughout doubt
Getting no's comes with the pursuit
of trying to be who you want to be
But the no's should just be wood to your flame
keep the fire going.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Fashion hates the short models but who cares

In this segment of Model Talk Radio on Weds the 8th at 1pm Live the topic is:
Fashion hates the short girls but who cares. You can listen live or to the archive by clicking here:

I will sharing how the history of modeling has been a rollercoaster from the early days to today. From the first fashion models being not as tall, to the Giraffes taking over the runways, to the advertising world giving the shorter girl her ticket. Inspired by the MET Model as Muse exhibit.

Short models in ad campaigns

What I have learned is that modeling is advertising, and where there is a product there is a model in need, therefore models are of all types but it is important for an aspiring model to market herself in the right ways. Think about it everything from sponges to furniture, computers, cell phones, haircare, shoes, tampon commercials! So much out there needs a model. So your perspective of what modeling is can help you as well. Think of advertising, keep advertising in mind and it will help you see where models of all heights are used. High fashion is not everything.


P.s: If you are looking for a modeling agency don't look for a "petite" modeling agency, focus on getting with a print agency because "petite" modeling agencies do not exist... yet.

Shorter models can find opportunity modeling

Your size has nothing to do with your chance, it has more to do with your own will. And how much time and effort you put into it :) I suggest getting a compcard, getting headshot, keep working on it.

Another big part of finding opportunity is to not expect someone else to do the work for you. Not even an agency. Many print models make their own compcards, themselves. They go to printing services and print compcards. Actually this is how a girl gets an agency, by mailing their compcard. So I suggest making a compcard, mailing it out, and hustle, hustle, hustle. Don't think that mailing one time is enough, it might take three different mailings with three different cards, but if you want something you must not give up. There is marketing involved in modeling.

Shorter models can find opportunity modeling but it is work.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Ever made a bad shoe purchase? Modeling Mistakes

Ever made a bad shoe purchase? Mistakes come with the word model, here I share one of mine.

FLASHBACK to 2001:

So I was doing some bad photography with some bad "guys with cameras" and I figured that some high stripper shoes to look taller in my shoots would be perfect. (even though I was not a stripper) So I went to 8th Street hunting for height. An experience I mark in my memoir Almost 5'4". Those stupid shoes, they were $50 which was a LOT for a college student to spend her weekly stipend for food on. Later, when I REALLY needed the money for food, I would regret spending money on these stupid shoes, which I hardly wore because after a few shoots I realized a “talented” photographer could shoot my proportions well without those slutty things on my feet weighing a ton.

These days 3-4 inches is cool. 5 inches is great, but those stripper heels are not in my life and never will be again that's for sure!

Modeling compcard tips for new models

A girl recently asked me: Should I make a compcard at Kinkos?

My reply:
Well, I have never heard of professional modeling compcards being made at Kinkos. For now, I would stick to printing your cards at a place that know how to make compcards. Although YOU as the Model should have a plan of how you want your compcard to look ahead of time. Making your own compcard involves thinking about the market you are trying to capture as a model, the modeling jobs you want to get, and the agencies you want to target.

On a budget, I think it is best to use, you can get a compcard for pretty inexpensive. You could test out like 30-40 cards, mail them out to agencies, casting directors, etc, and see what happens. If you do not hear back, make a new card, maybe your card wasn't commercial enough the first time for print? Maybe you need to work on the headshot more, regardless, keep trying and mail again, it could take a few submissions before you hear back from agencies and you might have to make more than one card obviously. :) It is work, it is time, it also involves visiting the post office. ALOT. :) I suggest when using a professional printing service and more options are to the right of my blog. I suggest also getting the proof of your card mailed to you in the postal mail. The reason: What you see on the computer screen doesn't always print the same. color, etc. You want to physically SEE the compcard in your hand before you approve.

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Sunday, July 5, 2009

Model as Muse on 4th of July

Some people BBQ on the Fourth of July. I go to the art museum. Yesterday at the Met I saw the exhibit Model As Muse, I loved it!
It is a must see for any model out there, or person who is curious about modeling. Appreciating the history of modeling can explain to you why things are the way they are in the industry. I loved looking at the older issues of Vogue. Ironically Dorian Leigh, one of the first fashion models, was a mere five-foot-four. (OMG!) Also you will see how modeling began, why models were needed, and the women that shaped the root of the profession. I bought the book Model As Muse and I will be sharing my favorite pages in a video this week.
Also here are some random photos looking at a gallery of amazing furniture and fixtures. Visiting the Met any day intrigues and inspires me.

Now it is time for a burger!
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Thursday, July 2, 2009

What is Print Modeling: Print modeling has become many things

Commercial print modeling is all about personality, and when an ad involves a model smiling while holding, wearing or using a product, she's typically a print model. When you shoot for a product ad or editorial that will be in a magazine, catalog, billboard or web ad.  “Commercial modeling" can mean actually working on commercials, or on TV, or web video ads, and it can also mean print modeling in a print related format. So unless it is direct, ask about what the job involves and what format the photos will be used for. Your commercial print modeling agency could submit you for on-camera and commercial TV work as well, so make sure you know what the modeling job or casting is for. It's good to be informed.  Usually before a casting/audition, the agency will let you know. "This is for print ad" This is for a commercial/TV use" etc.

Print modeling can be for actual print such as an ad in a print magazine, a catalog, a direct mail piece, or product packaging (the box a product comes in).  These days because of internet marketing many photos from print modeling jobs also end up on the web, iPad, or an app. This doesn't mean you get paid more, but it is important to know what the job is for.

Commercial print also implies the product will not be fashion based. It will be for a more "lifestyle" product, a product for all types of people, the mass market. Usually it won't be a high fashion product. Print modeling covers every day products people use, everything from a water bottle, to computer, to fast-food, skincare and home goods, etc.

Some clothing retail brands like Target or Macy's might be considered a print modeling client, but typically the clients within print modeling are not high fashion.

On the job: Print modeling involves your full self, head to toe modeling a product, service or goods in the ad campaign or print media form.

Print modeling also includes parts modeling: I do both print modeling and parts modeling, and many girls just do one or the other. Parts modeling is a part of print modeling but not all print models are parts models.  Parts modeling is when you use a certain body "part," a hand, foot, leg, stomach, etc, along with modeling a product, like modeling a shoe, or showing your whole foot for an editorial in a health magazine about preventing foot pains.

By the way: At print modeling jobs there is a stylist, but remember sometimes you also are asked to bring shoes and basic clothing to wear, jeans, a tank top, black heels, or sneakers... and there is a makeup artist usually but it's a good idea to also know how to do your own makeup anyways as a model.

Print modeling involves bringing to life the story of the brands image with your personality and look, so you will be told at the job, before the job or at the casting, what the job involves- if you have questions ask, it's best not to show up clueless to what you will be doing on the job.

Although remember as a model sometimes you have to improvise and "act" out an expression, this is where modeling and acting are similar in the sense of story telling. For example for a cell phone ad you will be "acting" like you are on the phone with a friend, smiling holding the phone for the shots. Even though you are not really on the phone with anyone. Usually you are given the concept, theme of the job and it's up to you to do your best to bring that idea or theme to life.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Models that want to be actors, some tips

A girl recently wrote me saying she was interested in modeling but wanted to dab into acting and wanted some tips. Here were some thoughts:

There are many freaks, perverts and scams out there. Oh yes! You will read some of the stuff I have been through in modeling in my memoir. Oh boy! When it comes to acting the biggest thing is to aim high, seriously, have high goals and focus on them. And ask yourself before taking a role "Will this lead me to where I want to be?" Is this role an asset towards the other roles I want to get?"

These days any girl half naked on TV is considered an "Actress" but being an actor, working as one, making a living, or at least getting good roles, takes time, energy, and marketing yourself the right way. So once you have a headshot that speaks about the type of roles you want you should mail your headshot to casting directors, here is a tip:

Pick up The Call Sheet at a bookstore, it is a booklet in the magazine section, look in the film and TV magazines, this is a very helpful booklet for any person curious and ambitious about acting/modeling. The booklet has a list of casting directors and agents and you should mail, mail, mail, get stamps, envelopes, your headshot to these casting directors and people. Now it is time for self promotion. So do it! The more you mail the more you will work. But consider who you work with and the roles carefully. You could start doing background work on shows like Law and Order, One life to Live, Ugly Betty, Life on Mars but grab the bookelt I mentioned above, it will help you for your mailings.

Gettin a resume together when even some small experience will help lead to bigger things.

I would try looking at ActorsAccess, NYCastings, ActorsFirstNY, but the point is to have a goal, think of the roles you want and focus on striving in that direction. You can not just rely on the internet for jobs. You need a headshot and you need to mail it. The Old fashion way is STILL the real way. Sometimes striving to be an actor can mean NOT working actually, and waiting, being pickier about the work you DO do, so that your resume will benefit where you want to be. Also when you meet people, agents, etc, if it is not in an office or during the day, it is unprofessional usually Becareful!

I hope this helps for now, let me know if anything else comes to mind.