“How to break through your local market and excel internationally”
Getting paid as a model is really challenging. Like most creatives, you are a freelancer on the search for your next deal with a brand or business to propel you further.
Is it hard? Yes.
Is it worth it? Also Yes.
We have spoken to many models, some who have started small and worked with local boutiques all the way up to models who are working with FENTY, jet setting around the world obtaining deal after deal.
There are so many different ways to start turning your business into a solid stream of income. One of the most common methods would be finding a modeling agency, to work with and start finding jobs for you. This is where things get tricky.
Once you sign with an agency, it can be hard getting out. You will want to make sure you do your homework on each agency in your city or apply to ones online but be sure to do your research. The best method of knowing if an agency is a great match is speaking with the girls and guys who are already signed and see how the agency is treating them. Is their agent finding them jobs? Are they responding to their emails? Has it been several months between jobs? These are things you need to know. Most models in the agency will let you know right away if an agency is good or not.
Of course, this isn’t the only way. The second way is by doing all the heavy lifting yourself, this way it’s more reliable income. You get 100% of what you worked for and it all depends on you.
The best advice we have received from models who have started on their own and built a concrete business was finding a niche and concentrating on doing work with businesses within their niche.
Once you find your niche such as; lifestyle, fitness, or high fashion, then you can begin building your portfolio. When starting out with Time for Print (TFP) work, other developing photographers will help you learn the ropes of flow posing and learning how to be photographed. Once you have a great foundation of shots in your portfolio you can begin reaching out to local brands and businesses. Speak to as many marketing teams as you can that work within your niche and start connecting. Connections will be the way to grow. In order to achieve this, you need to go in person and speak to businesses within your niche and get your name out there. Having a website built or developing your own, will make you look professional and give a place for people to view your work and contact you.
Familiarize yourself with local professional photographers and make the effort to introduce yourself. Once you have established a relationship with a photographer, then you can collaborate with businesses to create a more in depth portfolio.
Working hard at building your reputation and meeting a lot of industry professionals will help you graduate from beginner to pro model quickly.
When it comes to businesses, the goal is to connect with marketing managers, owners and company photographers who are decision makers for upcoming campaigns. This will give you the opportunity to get your foot in the door to become their go-to model.
Here is an example of scoring a gig.
-Your rate is $125/hour.
-You negotiate a deal with several companies for new shots every month for their social media (4-5 hours of shooting each).
-You work with 4 businesses per month (one per week).
-You are looking at roughly $2500 per month. (This may not be full-time income but for some, it’s a great start and you can always add more businesses per month to grow your income. )
Hard but not impossible. You made it this far didn’t you? What’s stopping you from going one step further?
Photo Credits -
Photographer: Mauro Matalone @_mauro_matalone
Model: Anica M @anica_myburgh, Agency: @bossmodelsa
HMUA: Megan Koriat @megkoriat, Gosia @gosiamakeup
Stylist: Luke @lukediva_