Thursday, March 18, 2010

A teen asks me about modeling: Tips to start modeling

A teen recently asked me "I'm 4' 10", 13 years old, and I REALLY want to become a model when i'm finished with high school... But I have no idea how to get started."

My reply:

Well, the first thing to have is confidence, and also to know what your traits are beyond your height. Modeling can be for girls of all sizes but the girl has to know what she DOES have and how to translate that into working with brands products for "print modeling". Modeling is about modeling something, not just about being tall, perfect, or pretty, it is about being what the brand is looking for and if you watch commercials and notice print ads in lifestyle magazines you will see the models are not all tall or one size or type.

Also at your current age I would not pursue modeling alone, do it with a parent. And after High School I would pursue college and while in college you could perhaps start modeling with a print modeling agency when you are not in class.

When you are ready to pursue modeling, the area to pursue if your are shorter than 5’8” is commercial print modeling or working with a talent agency.
I would ask your self: Do you have a nice personality? Nice energy, friendly smile ( I didn’t say perfect smile, I am talking about a friendly one), then these are the things to capture within professional photography with a professional. A headshot and catalog style shots and photos showing you modeling a product. You would then need to get professional photos and make a comp card, and mail that comp card by postal mail to a print modeling agency. It does take a lot of hands on work, sort of like playing a sport, it involves time, energy, and the will to try, and the confidence to handle the rejection.

Getting started has a lot to do with what NOT to do. My biggest tip right now is NOT to market yourself as a model on the Internet, not to use model sites or social sites because there is A LOT of risk in doing so and mostly amateurs are using those sites. The Internet is good for research but not to promote yourself as a model. Professional, legit modeling agencies do not look for talent on amateur model sites. It is a total waste of time to rely on the Internet to promote your self at any age. Ex: I give advice on modeling on my blog, but I do not use the Internet to promote myself as a model for hire. I have agencies for that and a professional comp card, which also has helped me approach brands and magazine editors and professional photographers at the very early stages of my pursuits to get some of my own experience as well.

Mainly to start modeling it takes a marketing mindset, knowing how to market what you do have to the right agencies with the right photos. Many girls have the wrong photos and submit them to the wrong agencies. And finding opportunities really does involve a lot of hands-on, do-it-your-self be-self-made behind the scenes work and self investment.

I wanted to share some links from my model blog, which I hope you can check out, which I think will help you:

Tips on why you need a comp card before the agency:

More tips on teen modeling and photos you need:

I am also an author and I am working on a how-to-modeling book for all sizes, I will keep you posted. The links I have shared above WILL help, and keep me posted if you any other questions,

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