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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Friday, April 18, 2008

Anxiety & Being a New Model

For you new/inexperienced/aspiring models out there who are on the search for an agenct, many things may be unfamiliar to you. It’s hard enough to break into the industry but not knowing exactly what to expect can be pretty overwhelming.

Sure you can read and research all you want, but it’s pretty different from actually going through the motions, right? Well, if you’re in this situation, rest assured, you’re more than likely psyching yourself out when you don’t really need to be.

Sure, it can be intimidating once you start pounding the pavement by going to open casting calls or waiting for that phone call/email after submitting photos via snail mail or online, but why stress about something that at this point is out of your control? Many aspiring models ask what they can do to prepare to become a model…there really is no formula for this.

My best advice is to make sure you are taking care of your skin/complexion, maintaining a healthy weight (notice the emphasis on the word “healthy”) and making sure your measurements are up to par (remember, ideal measurements are 34-24-34…bust-waist-hips). Preparing to pursue the modeling industry is not like training for the Olympics or even studying for the SAT. A lot of it simply requires meeting the stated requirements and having the raw, natural talent and looks that will interest an agency.

I’ve stated before that you should be happy with yourself as you are when you start looking for an agency to sign with and don’t pursue the industry if you aren’t. Work on yourself until you feel comfortable enough in your own skin. Self doubt and second guesses won’t get you anywhere.

Don’t do anything drastically different to your look if you know you aren’t going to stick with it for a while. Agencies fall in love with potential models as they appear during that moment so be aware of that. This isn’t the time to become a chameleon.

For you new and aspiring models wondering what’s going to happen once you get signed, it can vary from case to case but the basic process works this way:

1. Your agent will work with you closely to evaluate your runway walk (if you are a fashion model. Other categories of modeling may require a brief meeting to talk about what direction the agency will take your career. This is also a chance for them to hear your input).

If you need training, your agency will provide it free of charge. This is why I stress so much about not having to pay for modeling classes to “prepare” to become a model because any agency that believes in their models will do what it takes to make sure they succeed in their career and in being a representative of the agency.

2. Your first photoshoot will be scheduled in order to start building your book/portfolio. Your agent most likely won’t be present at this shoot. You’ll be working with a photographer and makeup/hair/wardrobe stylist. If you are worried about how to pose or how to act in front of the camera, just do your best and let it come naturally.

The photographer will give you minimal direction when needed but do not expect him/her to “teach” you—that is not their job! If you’ve ever witnessed a photoshoot, it is easy to see when a model is in his/her natural element in front of the camera and when they aren’t.

Any good potential model will have the knack for how to act and pose so let it flow and don’t analyze it. This isn’t one of those situations where you have a checklist you have to complete. Literally, you just go out there and do it!

Your agent will never throw you to the wolves unprepared. They are there to make sure you do a great job each time so before you let the anxiety attacks begin, just know that you will be put in good hands. Trust in your agency. So take a deep breath, relax and cross your fingers…besides, stress leads to breakouts, a model’s worst enemy!

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