Becoming a model is not an easy task. There are a lot of hurdles to jump between your first test shoot and being an agency signed, paid, full-time model. Certainly, not everyone can make it. If you do, it may be years before you can stand tall and wear the label with pride. With these ten shortcuts, however, you might find yourself hitting the big time sooner rather than later.
1. Become a social superstar
Modelling is a beauty contest, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a popularity contest too. You are simply more liked to be seen and scouted if you are being seen by a lot of people. That’s just common sense! Being able to interest a lot of people with your selfies and OOTD snaps also gets people’s attention. By people, I mean model scouts. But beware - try heading into an agency and claiming that you deserve to be a model because of your social following might not have the desired effect.
2. Get connected
They say it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. This can definitely be the case in modelling. If you know a top talented photographer or an important model booker, you could be on the shortlist in no time at all. Make them your best friend and prepare to work for them for free in exchange for your ticket to paid work.
There are certain areas of modelling that can only be done by a particular body type or look. Make yourself an alternative, plus size, or fitness model and you might be on the fast track to paid work. Being a fit model (the exact right measurements to try on clothing) can also give you a huge advantage.
4. Learn to do your own hair and make-up
Photographers will be happier to shoot with you if they don’t need to hire an HMUA (hair and make-up artist) when you shoot. This saves them money and time. It also gives you something else to fall back on which won’t require you finding a whole new set of contacts if modelling doesn’t work out!
5. Be your own stylist
Similarly, if you can turn up to a shoot with a wardrobe packed with indie designers or a whole new line borrowed from an up and comer, you’re going to get more opportunities. Get a high quality wardrobe together for each shoot and magazine editorials will fall into your lap - and tearsheets always work in your favour.
6. Take the reins
If you don’t want to wait for an agency to sign you, you can always go freelance. It will be more difficult as you have to be your own boss, but it may mean that you can start earning money quicker. Particularly if you don’t mind doing nude or glamour work, you could go far and fast.
7. Enter modelling contests
Beauty pageants, contests, and all the rest definitely raise your profile. You may also get some great new shots for your portfolio. Some contests even have contracts as a prize. Just beware of any contest that you have to pay to enter as it may not be legitimate.
8. Right place, right time
Be on the lookout for open calls. These normally only take place in major cities. If you’re willing to relocate to London, you’ll have more of a shot than you will living in the middle of nowhere. Then it’s all about tapping into that network so you hear about the opportunities.
9. Get out there
If you have the right figure and looks to be a conventional model, you might just be able to convince on first sight. Going to an agency and trying to get a contract through a walk-in audition is still possible, but only if you really have what it takes. Study up beforehand on the right practices and make sure you get it right. You may only have one shot.
10. Polish your skills
You can also invest in modelling tuition to help you get it right. This can give you a shortcut to the kind of skills that normally come through practice. It’s hugely helpful to learn everything in one go so that you can put it into practice later on. I offer tuition sessions at affordable rates, so get in touch if you want to get a step on that ladder.