Friday, July 30, 2010

Does a short girl have a chance in modeling?

A girl on facebook recently wrote me: "I'm 18 years old still in high school and I would love nothing more then to be a model. I'm taking modeling classes. I'm 4'9 and I wear the kids size shoe 13, so just recently I found some high heels like the ones that regular sized people wear and I'm so happy because it just boosted myself esteem a whole lot more. But being that I'm the shortest in the class I have curves and a big bottom so I don't know if thats what they are looking for now a days on top of that i have to me bad hair n black heads on my nose so I'm very self conscious because when ever they want to have meetings they end up picking the tallest girls so that gives me no hopes . I would love your advice. thank you !"

my reply might also inspire your own pursuits:

Hi hun, well first of all I am do not support modeling schools. I think of them are a waste. Mostly they just talk about fashion which is unrealistic for shorter girls, so I hope your doing ok with it. Modeling is ALOT more than fashion.

Only you can get your goals and dreams in motion. Being ambitiously realistic is best, and keep in mind that not all models are tall but you do have to focus on your assets, know what you have to offer, and focus on capturing that in your photos and putting together a comp card and portfolio. Modeling when you are shorter is alot more hands on than a fashion model's life. A shorter model typically will work within print modeling and she will work non-exclusive with agencies. Before you get infront of the camera I would focus on learning by example before you create photos that bring forward your personality, your smile, your energy, look at lifestyle print ads that show girls smiling and using their personality in the ad, and start to see, and understand what "print models" look like. They are holding cell phones, modeling accessories, modeling in travel ads, ads for technology, fitness, hair, beauty, nail care, and while the industry can cater towards lean and more proportioned models, if you want to do something, you have to take a realistic approach. Shorter models may not work ALL the time, they might not have a FULL time career modeling, but you can find opportunities. Also if your complexion is on your mind you should strive to keep your skin clear and clean because you might not be able to be hired for your height in modeling but shorter models can work within beauty model for skincare, hair, accessories, jewelry, and you will want to make sure your face is clear, ---there is opportunity for girls of all sizes with beauty and accessories modeling.

Also I suggest getting a nice smiling headshot made that looks very fresh, natural (ever see the girls on the hair-color boxes at drugstores?Fresh like that is awesome!) And get a close up beauty shot not smiling as well and more about your skin, eyes and facial features. Of course working with a professional photographer is best to get professional results.

Here are some posts from my blog that should help and inspire you.

The type of photos you need:

Differences of print and fashion modeling:

Does your photographer know what YOU need for print modeling?

How to find a photographer:

Why a comp card comes before the agency:

These should help get you moving, keep me posted on if you have questions about this, and if you need tips on anything else,

(you can email me at with modeling questions, concerns, or thoughts, and also submit for Petite of the Week, send a headshot with a smile to the email above and a few sentences on how you are making strides in modeling despite your height.)

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