Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Modeling being more than a pretty face

It's extremely important to be more than a pretty face even in this world obsessed with beauty, youth and perfection. Sure, models get told what to do a lot, you're sort of a rag doll in this industry, it's all about the client and the look for the campaign, editorial, project, but I think being easy to work with is key, communicating well with the photographer, going with the flow—and that's all a personality thing. I've been at shoots where the atmosphere was stressed and I could tell my presence and upbeat persona was what kept the energy at the shoot going. A model's job isn't just to hold a pose while wearing beautiful clothes and flaunting gorgeous makeup, it's to use her own creative energy, perceptive mind and skills of expression to help create the story around the product. Without personality you have a pretty model without life in her eyes, which isn't really pretty at all.

Check out my new graphic novel series Model Life Takes Fashion Week on the Comics Plus app.
Download the app and search for Gamine Press and find the series.
The Comics Plus app
The series involves how beauty can be deceiving and how unglamorous the modeling world can actually be, while revealing a moment-in-time with models, fashion editors, modeling agents, and photographers from around the globe and each of their missions to survive in the industry or get rid of the evil.
It's sort of Kill Bill Meets the Modeling World.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

New Digital graphic novel series launch! Model Life Takes Fashion Week!

It's Here! Download the Comic Plus app and checkout the new graphic novel Model Life Takes Fashion Week. A great pocket fashion accessory! 

Available for Android and iOS:

After downloading the app search Gamine Press under Publishers to find the series and check out the other awesome graphic novels too.

And be sure to friend and follow the work the fab illustrator: Jazmin 'Jaz Kitty' Ruotolo

With a Kill Bill meets the Fashion World vibe, the Model Life on-going series shares a moment in time with fashion’s elite all around the globe and reveals the glamour and darkness that occurs when perfection and beauty encounter revenge, tragedy and betrayal. Fashion illustration meets the graphic novel world with Jazmin Ruotolo’s expressive and dramatic style and author-model Isobella Jade brings years of experience in the modeling industry to the page with some added chaos and weapons.



It's New York Fashion Week and fashion model ISO's debut. She has risen from the ditches and darkness of the industry to become the "little Heron." It's her model moment, despite her recent involvement in the mega court case against a malicious magazine editor.
All promises to be glamorous until her tragic runway fall that tumbles into a streak of painful surprises. ISO walks the catwalk by day and by night goes undercover in disguise, led by the cries of the model newbies who ISO feels obligated to protect. Just when she’s found that feeling of empowerment again, pain strikes and she’s on a mission to find out who killed her best friend.
View preview pages here:



Monday, November 11, 2013



Download the Comics Plus app and search under Gamine Press for the series Model Life! Check out Comics Plus's awesome other graphic novels too! Will be sharing my favorites soon.

More details:

Monday, October 28, 2013

New Graphic Novel on-going series: # 1 Model Life Takes Fashion Week Coming in November 2013

Coming November 2013!
This new mobile on-going series shares a moment in time with fashion’s elite all around the globe and reveals the glamour and darkness that occurs when perfection and beauty encounter revenge, tragedy and betrayal. Fashion illustration meets the graphic novel world with Jazmin Ruotolo’s expressive and dramatic style and author-model Isobella Jade brings years of experience in the modeling industry to the page with some added chaos and weapons.
It's New York Fashion Week and fashion model ISO's debut. She has risen from the ditches and darkness of the industry to become the "little Heron." It's her model moment, despite her recent involvement in the mega court case against a malicious magazine editor.
All promises to be glamorous until her tragic runway fall that tumbles into a streak of painful surprises. ISO walks the catwalk by day and by night goes undercover in disguise, led by the cries of the model newbies who ISO feels obligated to protect. Just when she’s found that feeling of empowerment again, pain strikes and she’s on a mission to find out who killed her best friend.
Will be available on iVerse's Comics Plus App.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Special Fashion Week Modeling Memoir Price!

To my USA readers, even though I'm a lot shorter than most fashion models, height isn't everything and during Fashion Week the 5th-12th you can get a personalized/signed copy of my modeling memoir Almost 5'4" for just $15, includes shipping.  Please reach out through here for more details:


Friday, August 9, 2013

Hold that pose, giggling while holding a smiling pose is a good idea

On Good Morning America this morning beautiful Christie Brinkley and her daughter talked about a photo-shoot they did together, her daughter said it was embarrassing how her mother would "do this laughing thing" while shooting, but I do thi...s too actually, hehe, and it's actually a really good tip for aspiring models and for anyone who wants to look good in photos; Laughing while smiling, or making a laughing-like expression/sound is a great way to keep your natural smile when holding the pose. :)

Monday, August 5, 2013

The beauty of today

Focus on what really matters, the things that touch your soul, the things that you'd miss if you weren't here, the things that make you feel alive. Let go of the pressure to be, to keep up, to prove, unless you are pushing yourself toward a goal that involves sharing your goodness inside and giving out to the world your abilities, kindness and compassion.  Find the beauty in today, there's a lot there to notice. ~ij

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

A prom dress photo contest book giveaway for my YA novel Careful

My text message to Phoenix wouldn’t matter now. It was too late. Even though I sent him a “yes” an hour before, we wouldn’t be going to prom. There wasn’t even a chance that I could be saved. It was February 12th, and I was dead.  ~Estella, chapter 1 of Careful


In my YA novel Careful, the first book of the Careful, Quiet, Invisible series, Estella tragically dies in a texting and driving crash the day she tried on her prom dress with her best friends Zara, Jett and Eva. In memory of Estella I'm holding a photo contest based on the prom dresses of the main characters in the book!

Win a signed copy of Careful by submitting to the prom dress photo contest!

Contest Details:
 Did you wear white as your prom dress like Estella? Or pink like Zara or black (with sequins) like Jett or choose a purple/ plum color like Eva. Submit a pic of your prom dress that matches a character for a chance to win a signed copy of Careful. Submit your prom dress pic by email or tag me in a photo on Facebook or share the image with me on Twitter.

It would be cool to get submissions for each character so I can give away 4 books!


Contest Starts Today!
Ends Tuesday June 11th 2013
Here are pins similar to the dresses the characters wore in the book.


Monday, March 18, 2013

Life in the moment, it passes quickly

Sorry haven't written in awhile, working on the second book of the Careful, Quiet, Invisible series and busy with being the greatest job in the world as a mother. Usually by 8 p.m I have some time to myself and all I want to do is eat, shower and sleep. But I have lots to share about the past months working in the baby modeling industry and also some tips from questions I've recieved from readers via email. I'll be back. Stay focused with your pursuits and believe in yourself, you are your best cheerleader, start your engines!


Friday, February 15, 2013

Tips for baby modeling and being a baby model Mom (or Dad)

I've worked in the industry for over ten years so it's only natural that I'd get Phoenix into modeling, Ummm no, it's not because of me and my own hard earned experience in's only natural because Phoenix has a lot of personality, bright eyes, a calm nature, loves people, has a positive, happy nature and is always smiling that makes it natural that I'd get him into modeling. Also he likes to be held by people beyond me and my husband, which is also helpful in baby modeling. It's not just about looks, it's about the persona and nature of the baby.

I know the industry. My baby has personality, it's kind of like a Mommy and Me pursuit. If we book that's AWESOME, if we don't then, oh well, we are still having fun together and with or without modeling we are enjoying life together laughing, learning, growing, reading, playing (and check out our baby book club blog here).

I also think it's great for Phoenix to be in a creative environment and around creative people.

With my own background in modeling I went to the agencies I knew. Print agencies I've worked with over the years and still work with. Just like when a shorter girl is looking for a modeing agency, it's the same ballgame, I'd look for a print modeling agency in your area that works with models of all ages. Many print modeling agencies have a kids division. You could reach out to the agents and ask if they work with babies your baby's age, or look at the website and you should be able to tell if there are photos of other babies they work with, the ages, the type of photos. Then the best thing to do is get your baby's digital photos together. Snap, Snap, Snap.


I sent digitals of Phoenix in outfits of all types and learned that a basic onesie is the way to go, so if you are interested in your baby modeling, get some basic, plain white onesies and snap off some pics. I emailed the agents low res jpegs, and on the website of most print modeling agencies it will tell you how to submit photos to the agents.  Agents want digitals instead of professional portrait photos of your baby because babies change so much and so fast and when you start working with the agencies they will want fresh digitals often. So frame your professional portrait but send the digitals to the modeling agencies.

Just like in print modeling you should look at some baby ads, like for formula and the Gap.

Phoenix, at four and hald months, can now sit up pretty well himself, but just a month ago he was wobbly, so here's how I positioned him for the digital shots:

*I've used our Bright Starts portable swing while taking digital photos of Phoenix. Phoenix can sit in it all relaxed, and without turning on the swaying motion I sway the swing with my hand and control when it swings back and forth while I make a happy sound to get the smile and stop/pause the swing with my hand to get a still shot, allwhile holding the digital camera ready. It can be tricky to hold the swing, hold the camera and keep everything looking pretty but that's the job of the baby-model-Mom. :)

*The boppy pillow is great to place your baby on, it's comfy and keeps your baby sturdy, this is also a nice prop accessory to use to get a face shot of your baby, you can also place a blanet over the boppy pillow as well.

You can lay your baby horizontally or vertically on the pillow.

*Laying on a blanket is also a good idea. It makes for a pretty shot and it's easy to do. Grab a blanket, cream, white, blue, simple, nothing with a crazy design or patterns, just basic like your onesie.

You want to show the light in your baby's eyes, so be aware of where the light is, and let your baby's personality shine, shine, shine! :)

Now Phoenix is sittting up pretty good on his own so I'm taking new digitals all the time of him and this week will be taking a few of him sitting and smiling.


Just like many print modeling jobs for adults, with baby modeling castings and go-sees are last minute, so being available as a parent is key ( or perhaps your caregiver or nanny can help with it) being able to get to the casting with a day or less notice is how you book work.

Agencies ask their models to get them fresh digitals ASAP often so they can be submitted to the client on a weekly basis sometimes, the more recent the better. And in general you will need to and want to make sure you update your digitals at least once a month so the agency can submit photos of your baby in real-time.

Make sure when submitting photos they are at 72 DPI which is web size, I usually make images around 6 x 8 inches with a 72 DPI.

Also you will need to update your agency /agencies on the measurements of your baby. For retail clothing catalog jobs, fit modeling and jobs that require wearing a certain size of clothing you need to keep the agency updated on your baby's length, weight, hip, waist and chest measurements.

Your doctors appts. can tell you this but at home, more frequently you'll want to know your baby's measurements and I suggest getting a fabric measuring tape.

To weigh your baby, step on the scale and weigh yourself, then pick up your baby and see how much the scale changes. The additional weight is your baby's weight.


The Lowdown. For castings we don't need a comp card actually. Agencies have told us we don't need a comp card, but we can bring our portfolio if we want to the casting. Instead of a comp card, a 4 by 6 inch photo with the agency's info/sticker on the back can be handy to leave at the casting.

Have your onesie already on your baby before you arrive or be prepared to change your baby into one at the casting.

Usually Phoenix sleeps in the stroller and so he isn't fussy at the casting or modeling job, I make sure he gets in a nap before the casting, is fed, burped, changed and I wake him a few minutes before we arrive so he gets to wake up, I can get the sleep out of his eyes, clean his face and give him some snuggles and giggles and he's ready with his adorable smile already on when he arrives.

Leave early for the casting, you don't want to be in a rush and have your baby show up fussy because your stressed. Leave time for panic attacks and crying or a diaper change. In my opinion it's very important to be on time but also you don't want to show up with a wailing baby.

At the casting you could be in the room with your baby while some digital photos are taken of him or her, or your baby could be taken into the room with the photographer without you, and this allows the photogapher to see how the baby acts in front of the camera and without you. Your baby might have to be held by the "model Mom" during the job so the photographer and casting crew want to make sure your baby acts calm when being held by strangers. It's a good idea to have your baby used to be held by different people other than you. Read about one of our baby modeling casting adventures here.


You will find yourself being a cheerleader for your baby on the job. When we booked a job with a formula company I worked too. Meaning I was keeping Phoenix upbeat and happy throughout the job, fed, changed, smile ready. Okay getting him to smile wasn't hard, but this was the first time he had been on a photography set and was being held by his "model mom" for the day. He was happy being held and I stood by the photographer's shoulder to get Phoenix to look toward the camera and kept cheering Phoenix on, "Hey honey, Phoenix my love, look over here Champion." Over and over.

When the crew was deciding on the next pose, I got on set holding Phoenix and helped with positioning of the next shot.

Yes Moms, expect to be a part of the shoot and involved, at least to encourage your baby to smile. Your baby knows you best and the rest of the people at the shoot are strangers to your baby, and your enthusiasm is needed and appreciated.

At the formula shoot there was a diaper changing area but always have your own diaper pad with you and bring everything you'd bring for a full day because although your baby can only work on set for 2 hours it will most likely be spread out over 15-20 min sessions throughout what could be a 4-5 hour span or so.

Do you know the baby modeling labor laws?

No minor under 7 years of age shall be employed, used, exhibited or caused to be exhibited as a model for more than 2 hours in any 1 day and not more than 10 hours in any 1 week nor shall such minor be so employed, used, exhibited, or caused to be exhibited during the hours of 6 p.m. to 9 a.m.

Some Agencies in NYC for Baby Modeling

FFT Models
Future Faces NYC
Product Management
Wilhelmina Models

Modeling agencies typically get 20% taken from your baby's paycheck so if the job pays $1000 expect your baby's check to read $800. I'd open a trust account for your baby since checks will be in your child's name and he/she can put the money toward college or their future career goals.

When your baby gets paid keep in mind it will be in your baby's name so open a custodial account for your baby.


At castings you'll need onesies for your baby to wear too. The first casting we went to we were told for the baby to be in a onesie or t-shirt, and when you're baby is in front of the camera to limit distractions and keep the focus on your beautiful baby, a simple solid color or white onesie is best.

Clean face wipes
We use Johnson & Johnson Hand and Face Wipes.

Back up outfit
Always in the diaper bag anyways there is a back up outfit, cause you never know!

Scratch Mittens
Beyond being for a newborn we have scratch mittens in our bag too, on the job and day before castings and when Phoenix sleeps we put them on him because he's very active and scratches and bumps on the head happen, but I try to keep his face clean and scratch free the day of castings and modeling job bookings.

A toy or stuffed animal
When your baby is on set you'll want to encourage your baby to look at the camera and bringing his or her expressions, it helps to have a toy or stuffed animal your baby loves handy.

Baby nail file emery boards
In our Red Cross healthcare and grooming kit there were nail files which we love and use. They are similar to these nail files.

Baby lotion
We like Aveeno products and this Aveeno Baby lotion is always in our bag.

And of course every thing else you'd normally have in your diaper bag.

Sooo, get your digitals together, send me them off to agencies and wait and see. Having an adorable baby doesn't mean your baby will be a good model, I believe it takes the right personality of the baby too to get the job done. :)

Other articles on baby modeling that caught my eye:


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

In Memory of Estella Book Promotion for Careful Today Only

Today, February 12th, is the day Estella died.  
Careful, the first book of my YA series Careful, Quiet, Invisible is about the spirit of a promising teen track runner, Estella, who dies from a texting-related car crash.  Careful is a sentimental read,  and coupling the texting and driving element the story circles around loss, love, friendship, family, forgiveness, revenge and bullying. 
In honor of Estella's memory, just for today my USA readers can get a signed copy of Careful for $12 !
This promo has ended, stay tuned for others!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

An Inspirational book for young adults and teens that caught my eye

Jeez, there are plenty of distractions out there these days and so much information streaming into our brains, too much information, your mind can get cluttered, then there's Pinning and Liking and Tweeting, where's the time to think about our inner-selves, where's the time to do something for another...time is so precious and the way we use it is so important. And it's easy to put energy into things that really have nothing to do with who we are as human beings and who we are in the inside, and suddenly we've put in the back burner the importance of self-love, compassion and self-confidence.

A book recently came to mind that can help get the mindset back to YOU, what's really important, and believing in yourself, it's called Pink Power: We Girls Can Do Anything! by Jamie Lober.

On my bookshelf I have many biographies and memoirs and inspirational books, because I like to read something empowering, something that makes me think, and keeps me excited about my own projects, goals and life. You can check out Pink Power: We Girls Can Do Anything here.

Jamie Lober, President of Talk Health with Jamie, is a nationally known speaker and writer with a passion for providing information on health topics A-Z.  You may know her as she appears regularly in NY Parenting Magazine.  What you may not know is that she is the author of bestselling Pink Power: We Girls Can Do Anything!, a book about self-discovery, self-improvement and self-empowerment.  “I have addressed issues that plague girls of all ages: being comfortable with yourself, finding peers who raise you up, not caring what others think of you, earning the respect of others, becoming tolerant, getting things done without feeling discouraged, standing up for your rights, making healthy choices, taking chances and making yourself number one,” said Lober.  Lober insists that it is not until they overcome those struggles that girls can do anything.  She wrote what she calls the Girls’ Bill of Rights.  “Each of the ten rights has a corresponding chapter filled with wisdom, emotion and personal experiences,” said Lober.  Sons and daughters of all ages are sure to fall head over heels for this entertaining, powerful book that can change lives. 


Friday, January 11, 2013

Maintance for the hair: scalp treatments

Trying out LUSH cosmetics Superbalm scalp treatment tonight. It helps prevent flakes and restores your scalp, which is good for your hair. How your hair looks is reflected by the condition of your scalp. In the winter my scalp gets dry and I'm looking forward to using this treatment tonight. Also LUSH's ROOTS treatment is also getting lots of love out there. This weekend I'll be sharing the LUSH goodies I got today for the hair and face :) LOOK OUT it's Mom pamper time! 

Sent from my iPhone

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Starting your goals can be an emotional journey

Don't be afraid of the start of things...might be slow, might take awhile to get things up to the speed you want, this could make you feel doubt or question what you are doing, but don't. Stay focused, keep believing in yourself, because creating yourself, loving what you do, seeing it come alive and reaching the heights you want to reach is about each day of the journey. Focus on the good, keep your enthusiasm. You can't get to finale, the end of the race with the balloons, medals and confetti without the starting line. ~IJ

Monday, January 7, 2013

Phoenix's Baby modeling adventures: a diaper and a t-shirt please


When we get to a casting for a diaper brand today we were asked for Phoenix's name, agency and diaper size, then we were told to change him into wearing just a onesie or t-shirt and a diaper. I had an extra t-shirt in the diaper bag and had Phoenix in this one piece jumper originally (above). (I carry an extra outfit always in my diaper bag, for moments even beyond modeling. Also extra socks are good to have in the diaper bag too, just incase you lose one!)

Of course Phoenix had on a diaper of the diaper brand the go-see was for, it's nice to wear the brand you are going too, ya know.

Phoenix sleeps great in his stroller and I had to wake him, he was fed before we left and woke up refreshed and ready with smiles.

In the room are about 10 other parents: mothers/strollers/Dads.

There wasn't much of a wait, since the casting director had pre-selected the babies that were going to be seen. Basically right after I changed Phoenix into the shirt it was his turn. While I had changed his outfit I listened and watched out of the corner of my eye how the photogapher came in and took the babies with her to be photographed in another room across the hall while the parent/guardian/adult waited in the waiting area and soon the photographer came back with the baby and said something about the baby's performance.

I bounced him on my legs a little since he loves standing and jumping and cooing and it puts him in a happy mood, and quickly he's all set!

Then the photographer came in and said, "Phoenix..."

And I jumped up with Phoenix in my arms and happily handed him, my love, my son, my little prince, my champion, to her.

No comp cards were needed.
No portfolio was looked at.
Just my boy.

While waiting the few minutes it took for his photo to be taken I listened to see if I could hear him crying.

No cry. Of course, no cry, Phoenix loves people and he is such a little ham.

When the photographer came back with my little man, I was told Phoenix was a talker and talked between smiles. :)

Awww. Of course he did, he talks non-stop, cooing and loving listening to himself talk. I think he coo's so much because we read to him so much.

Anyways, when it comes to the job: Well we'll see. With modeling it's all about the we'll see.

Baby modeling tip:
Can your baby have personality/ a calm nature when being held by a stranger.Does your baby have a friendly, happy persona and smile? Can your baby lay on his back or tummy, sit there, without being fussy.

These are good traits of a baby model.

We will keep you posted on our baby modeling adventures! We've started the Phoenix Baby Book Club.


Sunday, January 6, 2013

My baby Phoenix has his first modeling go-see

Alert, positive energy, energetic, eager, warm smile

We are working with an agency in the city and tomorrow we have our first modeling go-see for my little one, Phoenix, three months. There is no pressure because with babies you never know, they could be smiling and willing or cranky and having an off day but I think Phoenix will be fine. Having your baby pursue modeling is about knowing your baby. I've got the pacifiers, favorite toys and bottle ready if needed. I really don't know what to expect since this is new to me, to us, but I'll keep you posted via my blog.

Phoenix has such a personality, he is such a little ham, with an adorable smile that I think could help him book work.

And modeling gig payments will go into his account for college. 

It's not just about having a beautiful baby, it's about the baby having personality and at the same time being alert with a calm nature and Phoenix has that, we will keep you posted on our baby modeling adventures and you can follow Phoenix's reading adventures too on our blog