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There is more to the modeling world than the media lets on. If you want to find out what it really takes and how to manage your modeling career, then you've come to the right place! This blog is dedicated to the aspiring and already established models who live to defy the standards and stereotypes in order to make a place for themselves in this crazy industry.

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Monday, April 16, 2007

Networking


This post will mostly be helpful for models who are doing more freelance work and are over 18.

Networking is key in building not only a good name for yourself but for also getting more opportunities for paying gigs, whether it's with a photographer or with a client.

If you do a shoot with a photographer or work a gig for a client and all goes well, that is a definite plus for you and a green light to make as many connections as you can. When you freelance, you are your own agent and you need to represent yourself in the best light. Being professional and carrying yourself with class and respect, as well as producing great images, will make a client remember you and want to come back to you again in the future.

During breaks on the shoot, talk to the client or photographer--if they are in the mood to make casual conversation. Show them your personality and if they ask you about yourself, use that as an opportunity to showcase the type of work you do or any other fun facts that you think they should know about you. You never want to be the model who just came to the shoot, didn't talk to anyone and then left afterwards. Linger without being a distraction after the job is done.

Collecting business cards will be a talent you'll have to learn. Email your contacts soon as you get home or get some down time. Don't wait too long because you want them to remember you instantly. Keep the email brief and mention that you had a good time and were glad to work with them. Also be sure to throw in that if they have any other projects in the future, that you are always ready and willing to work with them again.

This is key in building a good reputation for yourself. Your correspondence with the key players (photographer, casting director, the person in charge of the gig, etc.) is vital in making sure that they not only remember you but that they will be able to refer you to their contacts as well. This results in more opportunities for gigs.

For example, my most recent shoot was with a hip-hop group out of Oakland. I was the model for their CD insert and interestingly enough, there was supposed to be another model at the shoot (I had arrived 30 minutes early and didn't know about the other model until the rest of the group had arrived). She was extremely late and didn't answer her phone. When she finally did, she explained that she was still in the shower and still a good two hour drive from where we were.

Needless to say, she was told her services were no longer needed and that left me as their sole model. I automatically showed them my genuine (not fake) enthusiasm and used that opportunity to showcase my skills, seeing as how the model element of the shoot was now in my hands. The fact that I was there early, set up my outfits right away and was ready and eager to work made the shoot go very smoothly and they were all impressed by my professionalism and ability to work with the group members, who had never shot with a model before.

This allowed me to work very closely with the group and I spent my downtime in between outfit changes talking to the group's manager, who was also present on set. He made sure to give me his business card and I immediately emailed him, thanking him for his time and to keep me in mind. He responded right away with great compliments about my professionalism and that he would keep in touch, since he had a number of artists on his label who always needed models. Hence, my job security in the future with that particular client.

Make your networking work for you. Be sure to keep in contact with people you've had positive experiences with who you wouldn't mind working with again. And make sure that they feel the same way. Even if you aren't completely sure how they feel about you (although it should be pretty obvious depending on the vibe during the shoot), be sure to keep your name out there. Build up your network and develop those top clients who you know will be more than willing to hire you on again and will gladly submit you for other gigs. Who knows where one contact and email will get you.

Sky's the limit.

1 comment:

Dior Baby said...

Hi,
just thought I'd let you know that I absolutely LOVE your blog! The info is really helpful & the pics of you are awesome!
xoxo