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, May 30, 2011

Can Modeling Harm Your Career?

(This post is directed towards individuals that model but also hold down a full time job/career.)

Modeling usually isn't stable enough of a career to become a person's full time source of income in most cases. As a result, the majority of working models (regardless of the type of modeling they do) have full time jobs and simply use their modeling for supplemental income or to buy time until their modeling career really takes off. However, if you're dipping into both of these types of jobs, do you have to worry about your modeling images getting you into trouble with your boss? Could it even cause you to lose your job?

The most common examples/stories you've probably come across deal with female models getting fired from their jobs because of their decision to pose nude in publications like Playboy, Hustler, etc. I will say off the bat that if you are doing (or plan on doing) any type of glamour modeling that involves showing excessive skin, partial, implied and/or actual nudity, then it's definitely going to cause a conflict if you work in an office environment or related 9-5, daytime profession (teacher, law enforcement, legal field, healthcare, etc.).

These days it isn't difficult to find photos online and even if you are using a model alias and go through the pains of trying to control where such images appear, you do take the risk of a coworker, supervisor, customer or other person in the workplace coming across the pictures and blowing the whistle. Any female model that chooses to go the glamour route, be prepared to weigh your decision on how important your career is to you and whether pursuing modeling is worth losing your career over.

Because of how the business world works, very few employers will be okay with having one of their employees posing in such a way, especially if you are in a position of authority within the company. If you happen to work in sales, retail or the food industry, chances are this won't be as much of an issue since the nature of these types of jobs is usually less formal and not the same as those that come with working for a corporation, non-profit organization or related business entity.

So what about swimwear, fashion and commercial/print modeling? The good news is that the nature of these types of modeling are typically nowhere near as racy or "adult" in nature as glamour modeling. Swimwear can be pretty sexy, though, so be careful of how you're posing. As long as there is no implied nudity, actual nudity or raunchy poses, having tasteful swimwear images online and in publications more than likely won't harm your career.

As I've mentioned in previous posts, there are ways to model swimwear while still being family friendly. Appearing in fashion shows, editorial shoots, fashion spreads (that do not showcase any adult themed images, implied or partial nudity) and other related projects won't pose a threat either. Again, it all depends on the nature of the photo, what you're wearing, how you're posing, etc.

In most situations, should an employer or coworker come across your fashion, editorial, commercial/print modeling pictures, you probably won't have to worry about much, unless you happen to work for a very conservative organization or your boss is concerned about your modeling career overshadowing your duties on the job. Many corporate careers require loyalty from their employees and even outside interests such as modeling may not sit well with them.

It goes without saying that models in the commercial/print, lifestyle, stock and mature modeling fields are in the lowest risk category of getting into trouble with their jobs since the nature of these images are almost always family friendly and target the mainstream public.

Another thing to consider is that not everyone has a positive view of the modeling world. If you're interviewing for a job, are a recent hire or in a situation where you're trying to advance in your position, you may want to be careful about your modeling career and what images are publicized. Not everyone cares to learn the truth about modeling or be convinced that the stereotypes aren't always true, which can cause you to be unfairly judged without being given a chance to explain yourself.

So what should you do if you model or want to model but have a full time job as well? It mainly depends on what kind of job you have and the type of modeling you want to do. From past experience, I would advise both male and female models to be discreet about your modeling career. Do not broadcast what you do outside of work and don't make it a point to brag and pass your photos around the office--even with your closest coworkers. Leave your modeling career outside the door.

There really isn't a need to tell your boss, either. In fact, keeping to yourself about modeling will work in your best interest. As long as you aren't putting your job in jeopardy by calling in sick too many times (when you aren't) or taking long lunches to accommodate castings and shoots, chances are no one at your job will find out. And if they do, make sure to explain that it is something you do on your own time as a source of additional income.

It's a judgment call that you'll need to make but like I've already stated, as long as you aren't putting out any images that you wouldn't be able to show your parents, kids or friends, chances are your career will be just fine.


Anonymous said...

Hi Dania! I just have a random question for open calls- what should I do with my nails? Should I paint them a colour, or is it better to just use a nude polish or leave them bare? Thanks!

Dania Denise said...

Hi, Anonymous! You'll find the answer to your question in its own post, titled "Answering a Reader Question #145." Thanks for reading!

Anonymous said...

If you're in a modeling-related career, that's fine.

Anonymous said...

Even for male models who want to go the underwear modeling, Abercrombie, Speedo, or Playgirl route, ought to be careful too. I heard male models who pose for those things even get fired from their jobs too, so they better be careful.