Portfolios are one of the most important tools in a model’s arsenal. Without a strong portfolio, you do not get booked for the right jobs. A booker relies on your best images to showcase your work, and these images will help a client decide if you are right for them. That is why it is so important to put your best foot forward at all times - and avoid any possible mistakes.
Even if you have been modelling for some time, there are some portfolio mistakes that you probably don’t even realise you are making. If you are guilty of any of the following, make sure that you correct them as soon as possible.
1. Having too many similar images
If you have a portfolio based on work from just one photoshoot, you are doing it wrong. You need a lot of variety in your port, showing that you have worked at a range of photoshoots and for a range of clients.
Even if you are very specialised, for example only working on the runway, you need a diverse book. Twenty images of the same pose and facial expression for the same designer will not turn any heads. You need different looks, styles, and moods to really impress.
2. Using images you wouldn’t want to recreate
If you are a lingerie model, it makes perfect sense to have a lingerie shoot featured in your portfolio. In fact, they should be the main feature! But let’s say you did one lingerie shoot a while ago and did not really enjoy it. The images are really wonderful, but you wouldn’t want to shoot lingerie again. Should you include it in your port?
The answer is no! You absolutely have to stay away from the kind of images that you would not like to shoot. Otherwise, you are going to be asked to do it time and time again. This is only likely to annoy those who wanted to book you.
3. Including images that are third rate
If you only have a few images in your portfolio, you might be tempted to flesh it out with some of the other shots in your collection that aren’t quite as good. Surely, you reason, it’s better to be able to show a fair number of photos than to just have one or two good ones?
Actually, it’s better by far just to stick to those which are the best of the best. Your portfolio is only as strong as the weakest image in it. A booker may be impressed by your strongest work, only to decide against using you because you have weaker shots there. Always keep this in mind and edit as much as possible.
4. Using images that don’t look like you
Whenever you update your look, it is your responsibility to update your book as well. You should not have images in your portfolio that show an old hairstyle, you at a different weight, or even you from ten years ago. If you include these, the photographer is going to be hugely disappointed when you show up.
If you have to include an image which is outdated, perhaps because you have only just made a change, then make this as clear as possible in any way that you can.
This rule also applies if a retoucher has gone overboard on post production and changed elements of your face and body. This is a great image to showcase on your website or as part of your social media pages, but in your portfolio, it just won’t represent you properly.
5. Having too many images
When your portfolio is cluttered up with far too many images, the tendency is to flick through all of them without paying enough attention to any. The amount of images can be a little overwhelming, especially if many of them are very similar.
You can even end up in a situation where the booker does not finish looking through your portfolio because it is too long. This could cause them to miss seeing some of your best shots. Remember to keep it neat and limited to your best efforts.
Want to know more about how to put a modelling portfolio together? Book yourself in for a model tuition session and we’ll go through it all. If you only want to look at this side of modelling rather than taking on a posing workshop, then get in touch for a bespoke session.