A girl on facebook wrote me recently and asked "I desire more than anything to be a model. I love the flashing lights and the attention and feeling beautiful. So many people say I am beautiful and should model, but there's one problem. I'm only 4"9. I'm grotesquely short! But finding your blog has helped me realize that it is possible, and I'm going to my first modeling agency this year (I'm sixteen). I need to work on my appearance a little bit before I go, (get my skin clear, grow out my nails, tone my abs, etc.) and now I'm not going to be as nervous. Thank you so much, you're an inspiration."
My reply might also inspire your own pursuits:
Hi hun, I hope all is well and I am glad my blog inspires you. No matter your height I wanted to let you know that to get the attention of an agency and (prevent scams) and have a better experience as a new model, it is best to get a headshot created ahead of time,--that is the first thing to focus on. Below is a list of links on how to create a comp card, the photography you need and submitting to agency tips.
Getting a headshot and prepare to make a comp card with commercial print photos is important for a shorter girl. The right photos matter. Once you have commercial print photos, (examples here of what types of shots you need: (http://petitemodelingtips.blogspot.com/2009/08/alloy-is-good-example-of-teen-modeling.html ), then make the comp card and mail it to print agencies. Print agencies are best to pursue as a shorter girl. Also please be aware of the scams out there. There are many wonderful agencies out there, but also be aware of so-called agencies that rip off the models by charging them crazy amounts for photos and fees to work with them.
You and your parent should focus on finding a professional photographer in your area to hire for a headshot, and get some nice headshots, beauty shots, smiling shots, close-ups, shots that look like the Alloy catalog, like you are modeling shoes, handbags, accessories, or like something you'd see in Teen Vogue. Which show energy and personality.
Focus on getting photos that bring out the best in you in a natural way and make sure your photographer knows what print modeling is.
With these photos create a marketable comp card which can be sent to professional print agencies. (in print modeling there are not open calls, so beaware that you do have to mail your comp card to agencies). Print modeling agencies do not invest in their models like fashion agencies do and here is a list of some of the differences of print and fashion. It is a good idea to already be prepared with photos, a comp card, portfolio (you can get a nice Pratt portfolio at an art store, here is insight on portfolios http://petitemodelingtips.blogspot.com/2009/07/modeling-portfolios-only-show-good.html), when you approach an agency, and you can pervent photo scams from agencies by being prepared with your marketing tools.
A professional agency will at least work with your compcard and suggest ways to improve but a professional will not ever ask you for money to work with them or force you to pay them to work with them.
I always suggest shorter model take their photography into their own hands and find the right photographer to work with, and then submit your compcard to the right agencies.
Research professional photographers, and remember getting the materials you need takes time, self investment, and an ambitious realistic mindset.
Here are some posts on photography for teens your age, preparing for photos, and working with a photographer, and some other tips as well:
Examples of teen modeling photos:
Does your photographer know what print modeling is?
Modeling Agency Height Requirements and Teens:
Differences between exclusive and non-exclusive modeling:
Why a comp card comes before the agency in print modeling: