Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Models in the Internet Age, an itchy topic for me

My first experience of the word model involves Googling the word. Then I went through a rollercoaster of judging what was amatuer and real, and the ways of the web were not helpful towards the direction of real opportunity.

When I first Googled the word model, it was in 2001, and back then, it was not typical to promote yourself on the web as a model. I did not have a website, know how to make one, and in college couldn't afford one anyway, so I used online profile sites, but these sites didn't bring me modeling agencies and there were only maybe 3 good experiences from marketing myself as a model on the web. Once I wanted to seriously pursue modeling not just call myself a model things started happening. Once I took the steps, prepared professional photos and submitted them to real agencies, and tried over again, did any real modeling work come.

Today it's very easy to become a hot ass on the Internet, but does that really mean you will be modeling for something or really a model anyways? I don't think so. Today we have Youtube singers that go from their web cam to national talk shows and if you have enough friends you might get your own reality tv show, but even that does't mean long gevity in the spotlight or monetary success.

In this Internet age there is not just one way, person, or thing to do to find your own success, but if you use Google and the Internet as a search tool you are better off than using it for anything else. Find answers, aim for professionalism, become a marketer, not just a model but someone who knows themselves, knows the agencies to target, the photos you need, and do your research and homework.

Personally I don't want five minutes of fame and I don't want to be apart of anything unless it has purpose that I can feel good about afterward, not just in the moment, but know I am doing what I want to do but also aiming high along the way.

I suggest these things for dealing with the Internet age:

1. when it seems all you need to do is download a photo remember it takes more than a click of the mouse to call yourself a real model.
2. you are not a model until you model something. A product for a brand, for a magazine editorial. Remember this and use this as inspiration to get more, aim higher!
3. You still need physical modeling tools. The web does not substitute the modeling compcard, or modeling portfolio, you need these tangible things for castings and submissions to agencies when you are starting out.
4. Very few can manage a long career, that pay their bills, by just and only being a hot female. I feel the Internet-age has made many women want to be seen, desired, and a tease, but this doesn't mean you are really going to "work as a model". The more you think about modeling products and what products you can realistically model for you will see that a smile shot is the best marketing tool for a model.
5. Think twice before signing up or being a part of an online profile site, or community, most are scams, or a waste of time full of amatuers. If you do not know the difference between amatuer and professional and do not have a strong willed marketing mindset you can make many mistakes and have many regrets by associating yourself with the wrong websites, people, and photo-shoots.
6. Protect yourself and be selective and careful about the photos you reveal on the web and the photos you have taken of you. A professional photographer won't abuse the rights to the photos, but do not take a photo you will regret later. Think ahead, think of your bigger goals always.
7. A website, having your own website can be helpful when you have experience, but if you are thinking you will be discovered from it, it is likely it won't happen.

8. I suggest being extremely skeptical about online castings, anything that reads "No experience required is always a scam!" And be VERY, very careful about submitting to any online model casting on the Internet.

9. Focus on the photos you DO need, a headshot, a beauty shot, a full body shot in a catalog style that shows personality, don't waste time with photos that do not market you and your assets. Focus on what a print modeling agency wants to see.

10. Do reach out to professional photographers and paying for photos can be a good investment with a professional photographer.

11. Make a compcard! YOU need this!!! You can't work with agencies or be a model without it.

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