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Showing posts from March, 2012

Answering a Reader Question #346

Anonymous Wrote: Hi Dania in regards to modeling what's more important a models weight or their measurements. I really want to know in regards to a commercial market in NYC. what's more important to clients and agencies. For the commercial market it is common for a agency to turn down a model based on her weight or measurements. Also when a agency signs a commercial model what criteria do they go by to sign someone like what does a model have to have in order to get signed to a commercial agency. Thanks so much Hey, Anonymous! Measurements are almost always considered a higher priority than weight overall. This is mainly because of the whole sizing factor when it comes to wardrobe. Commercial/print models in general do not have to adhere to the same strict weight/measurement requirements that high fashion, runway and editorial models do. It is not as likely for an agency to tell a commercial model to lose weight or turn him/her down because of their weight--t

Answering a Reader Question #345

Anonymous Wrote: hi Dania i have a question about acting. how do i get an acting agent. what is the process to get started with acting. I did several plays throughout middle school and high school. however, the last play i did was when i was 18yrs old can i include those plays on my resume right now all i have are my stats from modeling my height and other measurements i was hesitant about adding previous work from high school because i wasn't sure if they were too old. I feel that since i haven't done any performing since I was 18 I figured I'm starting from square 1 brand new. So I would love a step by step approach pursuing acting seriously and hopefully finding an agent I'm a new freelance model but I want to become a freelance actress is that possible is there a M.M for actors. Oh and I would prefer to act for television and film, theater is great but I'd rather be on camera than on stage. I prefer to be on camera I'm fine with star

Answering a Reader Question #344

Anonymous Wrote: hi Dania what's your criteria for accepting gigs on Craigslist? how do you actually search for jobs on the site do you search "jobs" or "gigs" in the part where you have that option. On average how much do you get paid for a gig and how long does it take to receive the money. Thanks Hey there, Anonymous! To find out my thoughts on searching for gigs on Craigslist, you'll want to check out the following link to my blog post about this topic: Tips for Finding Modeling Jobs on Craigslist To find posts for modeling gigs on Craigslist, you'll want to look for the "Gigs" category and click on the link for "Talent" underneath it. The pay varies and people posting on CL aren't always operating on the largest budgets so usually the pay ranges (in my area, which is Northern California) from $150-$500 per gig. I've seen posts for $800 or more but very few of them are legit. The majority of "high payin

Answering a Reader Question #343

Anonymous Wrote: Is it 'unprofessional' to wear nicer shorts to an open call? Like white, denim shorts? Or is it better to always wear a skirt/jeans? And if shorts are fine to wear, should I wear heels with them too? Thanks!  Hi, Anonymous! Because open calls are informal, it is okay to wear nice shorts, especially since that's a great way for the agency to see your body shape. ALWAYS wear heels to anything modeling/agency related so definitely pair them with your shorts (they'll make your legs look awesome, lol). Should you get invited back for an actual interview with the agency, that's when you'll want to wear something less casual.

Answering a Reader Question #342

Anonymous Wrote: Hi! I got invited to an invitation-only open call and I have a few questions. The email they sent me about three weeks after I mailed snapshots says that there will be 10-12 other models and "it takes about an hour". Do you think they mean they will interview with 10-12 people all in one hour, or one hour each? They also said they are considering me for their fashion division, does that mean the same thing as runway? Also, do you think that I should wear heels? Does it make a better impression? Thank you for all of your help!  Hey, Anonymous! Congrats on getting the invite to the open call! I would think the "hour" includes the entire process from the time to you sign in, get interviewed/evaluated, etc. Casting calls are typically not long in duration. They'll more than likely have more than one person conducting the open calls (to make things go faster) or will bring people in 2-3 at a time. It's unlikely that they'll ta

Aspiring Models & Jumping the Gun: Not a Winning Combo

I can't help but be amused when I talk to/mentor aspiring models. Just in talking to them or reading their emails, I can sense the anxiety, excitement, ambition and all the other emotions that come with the thought of pursuing modeling. Of course youth has a lot to do with it...many of the aspiring models that contact me are very young (13-17 usually but sometimes even as young as 10-years-old!). When it comes to interacting with newbies with big dreams of making it big in modeling, I notice a couple of consistent behaviors/beliefs that seem to be common with the younger age group. The most obvious one I notice is that they're busy trying to apply to agencies before they've even reached the physical requirements. Everyone grows at their own rate--I've met 13 and 14-year-olds that were already a whopping 5'10", while I've met others the same age who were barely 5'4". When a newbie asks me if they have a shot at being a fashion model but they&#

Applying to Modeling Agencies is Like Applying to Colleges

Before you start getting panic attacks about the educational requirements to pursue modeling through an agency, let me set the record straight: there are NO educational requirements, degrees, diplomas or certification needed to become a model. The purpose of this blog post is to explain the similarities between modeling agencies and colleges in regards to the way you prepare your submission materials to them (so if you were having a panic attack just now by reading the title of this post, you can take that much-needed deep breath and exhale now, lol). Many new models have no idea where to start when it comes to finding a modeling agency for representation and that's totally normal. How can you be expected to know about something you've never dealt with before? However, the risk with being a newbie and trying to find your way in modeling is that sometimes it can lead to making innocent mistakes, such as the way you submit yourself to agencies. Some may think that if they g

Submitting to Modeling Agencies: No Trick Questions Involved

It can be intimidating as a new/inexperienced model to apply to agencies. However, there's no need to have anxiety attacks when it comes to submitting yourself. Agency websites state often that it's perfectly okay to NOT have professional pictures or a portfolio put together--they even state plainly on their sites that it's acceptable to send them snapshots. That being said, when it comes to agency submissions that ask you to explain any experience you may have, tell the truth. There is nothing wrong with saying that you are new to the industry. This part of the submission process isn't a trick question--they need to know your level of experience in order to help factor in their decision to represent you. An agency isn't going to approach an experienced model seeking representation the same way they would a newbie. Aspiring models that feel embarrassed or less worthy because they don't have previous experience are being way too hard on themselves and are se

New Dania Denise Modeling Website Relaunch for 2012

I'm really excited to relaunch my official modeling website with a new look/layout. It's important to keep modeling websites/profiles up to date and for 2012, I decided to revamp my current site. Luckily, I'm able to customize it entirely on my own and can update my pictures, add as many pages as I want, etc. without having to pay a graphic designer to do it--that's the method I've been using since I created my first modeling website back in 2007. It can get pretty expensive! So here is the link to my new modeling website...because I can update everything myself, I'm going to be diligent about keeping my portfolio pictures on there current, as well as my resume. The URL itself is different but I plan on keeping my original domain name and will eventually switch it over to the new company I'm using so that anyone that types in will get my new site instead of the old one: DANIA DENISE OFFICIAL MODELING WEBSITE

Answering a Reader Question #341

Anonymous Wrote: Hi Dania! I live in Indiana and I'm looking to be a model. I'm almost 16, 123lbs and my measurements are almost the standard-im still working on slimming up hehe. I've looked at some website agencies you've posted for another lady who lives in Indiana and I have a few questions. For my headshots, should I smile or have no expression? or smize? and when I build my professional portfolio can some of my friends in college that are studying to be a photographer take my pictures? or should i hire an actual photographer? oh and will the fact that my eyes are different colors-(one is brown, one is blue/green)-work against me? I dont know if the fashion industry would be that picky. Thanks soo much! I'm addicted to your blog so i'm going to keeping reading on! :) xoxox  Hi there, Anonymous! Thanks for being an avid reader of my blog...I appreciate it!!! For your headshots, you should not smile if you're trying to be considered fo

Answering a Reader Question #340

Anonymous Wrote: Hey Dania! :) I love, love, love your blog! :D It's helped me a lot. So, thanks a ton. :) Um, here's my problem: I live in India, in a rather small town and I have big dreams to make it in the modelling world. My dreams, though, go beyond India, since the modelling scene here isn't equally as good as America. As soon as I turn 18, I'll be allowed to move out and pursue my passion. As of now, I'm 15 and my height is 5'7". Do you think agencies like Ford will be interested in me? If so, how should I proceed? Also, I got stretch marks when I was 14, is it too late to minimise them now? I didn't really know how to go about with them until I saw your post. I'm sorry for all the questions. Lol. :P Thanks, again. :)  Hi, Anonymous! I'm glad that my blog has been such a help to you...I love to hear that from my readers! :-) In regards to your height, if you end up growing to at least 5'8" by the time yo

Answering a Reader Question #339

Anonymous Wrote: Am I supposed to have to pay to create my portfolio? It seems like that is what every agency is saying I need to do.. "You need to invest some money into your career." But it isn't just "some" money, it seems like $1,000 is the least I'll spend. Is this normal? It seems a bit ridiculous, especially if "A real agency won't ask you to spend any money"... I don't know what to do. What did you do to build up your portfolio?  Hi, Anonymous! I would recommend that you read my blog post about this subject, which explains the ways agencies operate when it comes to the process of having newly signed models put together their portfolios: The Deal With Agencies & Test Shoots for Portfolio Building $1,000 is really high and not an amount you need to pay to get quality images. Most models typically spend anywhere from $200-$600 ballpark but those fees include much more than just hiring the photographer that takes yo

Latest Shoot: Bowling Themed Editorial Spec Ad

I've been fortunate to work with some great photographers in the years that I've been modeling and oftentimes we end up working together on more than one project. A few weeks ago, a photographer I shot with a while back, Stephanie, shot me a text to see if I was available for a shoot. She's got great skills and I had a blast working with her before so I figured, why not? The shoot was a bowling themed editorial spec ad. The word "spec" means that it's not a real ad that's meant to be published. The purpose of this shoot was for portfolio building, which I was happy about because I've been wanting to include more samples of editorial work in my portfolio. I showed up bright and early at a bowling alley in the beach town of Pacifica, which is about 15 minutes outside of San Francisco. Thankfully, the weather was amazingly warm and sunny. I met up with Stephanie and we headed into the bowling alley to set up the equipment and figure out what shots s

The Role Modeling Plays in My Life

This blog post was inspired by a reader question... Anonymous Wrote: I have a few questions about you! Is modeling your main/only source of income or is it just a side thing you do? How many agencies are you signed to? How many 'gigs' do you get on average a week? Good luck with your future modeling plans :) As I'm sure many of you know by now, modeling is more than just a hobby for me. It's a passion and something that I continue to enjoy more and more with each passing year. However, the role that it plays in my life is probably a lot different from what many of you that don't know me personally (or in the "real world) would think. I often get asked if I model full-time. My answer is "yes and no." Yes, because it is a career that I seriously pursue and run as a business (I file my own set of taxes each year that relate to my modeling and acting work and related expenses). No, because I also have other careers that I also seriously pursu

Answering a Reader Question #338

Anonymous Wrote: Hi Dania, i have a question. after you've submitted pics to an agency via email and snail mail ( i do both i want to hit them from both angles) and haven't received a response provided you've waited the right amount of time does it make sense to still go to an open call. I'm really ambitious about this so how long again should i wait until i resubmit pics or attend an open call. waiting is getting hard, i'm on MM but haven't received a response regarding castings or photo shoots. agencies don't want me right now i'm just feeling bummed. granted i have a day job so financially i'm fine but i'm miserable and very unhappy. i just want to be a model (preferably an agency signed model). I just want to make money doing something i love instead of something i have to do it's so miserable so you see i have to follow my dreams i have to make me happy. what should i do because i feel people are not giving me a

Prepping Your Snapshots for Modeling Agencies

This blog post was inspired by a reader question... Anonymous wrote: When submitting snapshots to agencies through email, should I send separate files or edit the all onto one "page"? Like the one example you gave of Doutzen Kroes? Or does it not really matter? Thank you for all of your wonderful help!  If you've been a reader of my Modeling 101 blog, chances are you've seen me mention non-professional digital snapshots for agency submission quite a few times. Those of you that are familiar with my posts may also have seen photo examples of what other models' snapshots look like--namely, the ones of Doutzen Kroes, where her images are arranged as six pictures all put into one collage. While Doutzen's snapshots are perfect to use for creating your own snapshots to submit to agencies, I do realize that some of you may be confused about the type of layout you should do. So to clarify things once and for all on this subject to save any newbie models gri

Answering a Reader Question Video Reply #4

Anonymous Wrote: VIDEO REPLY!! Hey Dania, I am an aspiring model and basically here is my position. I am turning 18 in April and have been preparing for a trip to New York in June. I have zero modeling experience besides my own "photoshoots" of family members taking pictures of me. I am 5'8 117 lbs. hips 32 waist 26 bust 29. I live in Indiana and don't have time or money for local agents. I work 50 hours a week and study modeling all the time. I want to go to New York and go to open calls and castings for top agencies and see what happens. I have a great personality and a lot of modeling knowledge from the internet and such, but like I said no experience. I would love to sign to ford, elite, or IMG and of course do runway. I know this industry is competitive but i think other qualities I have will make up for my height. I am not cocky just confident and being positive towards reaching my goals and I was wondering what you thought about my random trip

Quick Tip #41

Category: Wardrobe For: Male & Female Models When doing a photoshoot and wearing wardrobe that has been given to you by the wardrobe stylist DO NOT RIP OFF/REMOVE THE PRICE TAGS! Oftentimes, stylists end up returning the merchandise after the shoot since they know the outfits won't be used again so it's important that the garments go back to the store the same way they came out. If a tag is bothering you, ask permission first to see if it's okay to remove it. If not, just deal with it for the time-being. You might get lucky and work with a stylist that has a device that can reattach the tags after they've been that situation, then it's okay to take them off BUT still ask permission first! This will make the stylist's job much easier and keep you on their good side.

Answering a Reader Question #337

Anonymous Wrote: Hi Dania, I just had one quick question- if a reputable agency really wanted me, would they pay for me to get to shoots? This is what my mother thinks any agency should do and I'm not too sure if that's how it works/if it's completely out of line for her to mention that to any agency. The last thing I want to do is come off as rude. Thank you!  Hi, Anonymous! Great question, thank you for asking it here on my blog so other readers can also benefit! When it comes to castings/go-sees, where you're "auditioning" for a project, then, no, agencies will not pay for your expenses related to travel (gas money, plane ticket, parking) and/or lodging (hotel). If it is for an actual project that you've officially booked, this part is negotiable and totally dependent on the client, budget and nature of the assignment. The client is the one that would cover such expenses, not the agency so that's important for you and your mother to

Answering a Reader Question #336

Anonymous Wrote: Hi thanks for all the wonderful advice! My question is, is it a good idea to sign with a small agency in a big market like L.A.? Will this lead to bigger opportunities and bigger agencies? Or is it a dead end? Will the get me good gigs? If you've already written an article about this could direct me there? :) Thanks!  Hi there, Anonymous! You're quite welcome! I do have posts related to this topic but figured it would be more useful if I just answer you directly (it also reminds me that I want to do a "refresher" posts of sorts related to this subject, so thank you for reminding me, lol). Any agency large or small in a big market like Los Angeles is a good bet. Many people discount boutique agencies but in reality, they have just as much pull/influence as the bigger competition. The only difference is they're more selective and limit the number of models they represent. This makes for a more intimate/one-on-one working relationship. W

Answering a Reader Question #335

Anonymous Wrote: Hi I am 34 year old asian male, well skinny, I have been told I don't look older than 26 years old. I wanted to go for modelling but life got into it's ways, hence now I am thinking about it again. 1) do u think it's to late 2) what is the best way forward if age is not an obstacle  Hi, Anonymous! To answer your first question, no, it's not too late. :-) To answer your second question, you'll want to look into agencies that represent commercial/print and/or lifestyle models, which is the category you fall under because of your age. Should you end up getting signed, it'll be up to your agency to decide whether they'll consider representing you for other types of modeling. Do an online search for modeling agencies that are within a 2 hour's drive from where you live. Each agency website will have info/directions stating how to send them a submission and what types of photos they want to see. Wait to find out what each agency wa

Answering a Reader Question #334

Deanna Wrote: Hi Dania! :) I just applied to be a ford model the other day (through their website) and they replied to me the next day! (which was super exciting haha) now they're asking me to send in more pictures wearing a bikini and more profile shots, as well as my runway walk I really want to make a good impression so do you have any tips for me? :) thank you so much!  Hey, Deanna! Kudos on hearing back from Ford right away...that's awesome! :-) In regards to the additional photos you'll be sending, here are some quick tips: - Wear little to no makeup...whatever look you had in your first set of pictures you sent them, stick with that. - Choose an age appropriate swimsuit style that is one solid color that flatters your skin tone (no logos, brand names, images or other distracting patterns on it) - Don't wear heels/shoes or socks. You'll want to be barefoot. - Don't pose in these the most you can put one hand on your hip.

Answering a Reader Question #333

Anonymous Wrote: Thank you for your post but I must ask-how does one become a fit model?  Hey, Anonymous! There are two ways to get into fit modeling: through an agent or on your own, which is known as freelance modeling. Once a model gets signed to an agency, they'll take the model's complete measurements and if their stats match the requirements of any clients looking for fit models, they'll submit them for the gig. Clients in need of fit models also post on sites like Craigslist, casting agency sites and other online resources, which allows freelance models to submit themselves for consideration.  Because this type of modeling simply involves trying on the garments, you do not need to have modeling or fit modeling experience so even a person that's new to the industry could get hired for this type of work as long as their measurements are a match. You don't need professional photos, either. Snapshots that clearly show your body shape in fitted clothi

Quick Tip #40

Category: Communications For: Male & Female Models When submitting yourself to castings for modeling assignments, follow the instructions listed in the post. If no specific instructions are given, send the client a message to ask about the details and how you can be considered for their project. Never tell a client that they should contact you and leave it at that. If a client posts that they are looking for models, that means you need to contact them , not the other way around. On sites like Facebook and Model Mayhem, where you're allowed to post a public reply, I'll often see models telling clients who have posted gigs to "message me" or "contact me." Models that are truly serious will initiate the business relationship by messaging/contacting the client directly with their inquiry. Telling a client to contact you gives the impression that you're too busy/important to drop them a line. To me, it comes off as being pretentious/self-importan

Model Submissions: Navigating Modeling Agency Websites

Having a hard time trying to find info about how to submit yourself through an agency's website? Most sites for modeling agencies make it easy to find this information, while others seem to make this difficult, resulting in a "hide-n-seek" of sorts. Here are a few places you can look on an agency website if you're having trouble getting the details you need to know in order to prepare your modeling submission: Contact Page: This is the first place you should check if you can't locate submission info on an agency website right away. Oftentimes, they'll list the requirements and ways to submit on the contact page, or provide the email addresses of the specific person/people you need to email your photos and information to. Open call details are also posted on the Contact Page for some agencies. About: Sometimes agencies will sneak a link into their agency bio that will take you to the page where you'll find the details about model submissions. The

Answering a Reader Question #332

Anonymous Wrote: Hi dania, do you know what website agencies go to for finding castings for their models and actors. Also I have another question. I want to make time for my acting and modeling but I'm under pressure to move out of the place I'm living within 6months to a year. How do I balance following my dreams with moving out it also doesn't help that I'm a new actress and model (so far I've done two test shoots and I've submitted to agencies over 6wks ago without a positive response well actually two agencies said they like me but are too full for my category so that still leaves me struggling for representation and money). I thought about taking acting classes at a community college but most of the classes are offered during the day. I don't have a day job yet but when I find one I'm pretty sure it'll be during the day, I'm still looking for a job but I have to remember that I have to move out soon. I've thought a

When to Start Charging for Your Modeling Services

(This post is mainly for freelance models dealing with clients asking you what your rate is, not for gigs where the budget/pay has already been set.) Although the modeling industry is a business and operates like one, it isn't quite the same as a traditional 9-5 job. Working as a freelance model means being self employed and what might come as a surprise to many is the fact that when it comes to charging for services, there aren't any hard and fast rules or some ultimate guidebook that has all the answers. A common question I get from many freelance models deals with the subject of not just charging for modeling services but figuring out when in their careers it is appropriate to begin doing so. As I just stated above, there are no hard and fast rules regarding this topic. However, there is some basic criteria that I believe would qualify a male or female model to begin charging clients wanting to hire them for assignments/gigs. A Strong Portfolio: This is a freelance

Answering a Reader Question #331

MinnieS Wrote: My son is absolutely gorgeous. We hear this all the time. He has a killer smile and the small body frame which will never get much bigger. I would like to get his face out there but dont know where to start. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance for the help  Hi MinnieS! The best way to jump start your son's modeling career professionally would be to find local agencies that represent male models. You'll want to look for agencies that are within a 2 hour's drive from where you live. These days agencies have official websites that list all you'll need to know in order to send in a submission. Because not all agencies ask for the same materials, you'll have to prepare each submission accordingly. At this point, don't worry about getting professional photos or putting together a portfolio--this isn't necessary. Agencies prefer to receive non-professional, digital snapshots, which you can easily take yourself in your home. Here is a li

Quick Tip #39

Category: Emailing Photos For: Male & Female Models When emailing me your modeling photos for critique/feedback/evaluation, PLEASE don't send me monstrously huge files. They take forever to upload/display. Sometimes it takes so long I give up, lol. So before sending your photos, resize them to be the appropriate size that won't take long to open. Minimum file size: 100 KB (or close to it) Maximum file size: 1 MB (or close to it) Thanks!

Answering a Reader Question #330

Anonymous Wrote: Hi Dania! I was just wondering how long it took you to find an agency/get started. What was your first paycheck amount? Was it more or less than you expected? And with an agency did you get a lot of work, like how many jobs did you get in one month? I'm just wondering so I can learn about someone's past experience, even though I'll be sure to expect less because you're so much more talented! Keep up the great work and good luck with your future!  Hey, Anonymous! Thank you SO much for the compliments and kind means a lot! Hey, we've all gotta start somewhere and I know that with time, experience, luck and dedication, you'll establish yourself! Before I answer your questions, please keep in mind that when I started it was over 13 years ago...the Internet was nowhere NEAR as used by the masses as it is now, there was no ANTM or anything modeling related on TV and online submissions to modeling agencies all but didn't

Answering a Reader Question #329

Anonymous Wrote: Hello Dania, Is there a link that contains a compiled list of the questions and answers for the "answering a readers questions".  Hi, Anonymous! Unfortunately, I've yet to find a feature on Blogspot that allows me to compile all of my "Answering a Reader Question Series" into one list that I can link to. However, if you use the "Search" box on my blog (it is a white box with the Google logo on it) and enter the following keywords: answering a reader question , it will bring up all of the posts in the series. They're not in numerical order, however. When you use the search box on my blog, make sure you select the option for it to search "" and not "Web." Hope that helps!

More Bridal Fashion Show Fun!!!

We only have two shows left for the Brocade Wedding Fair Spring Season--I can't believe it's gone by so fast! Thankfully we have some amazing photographers that have really put in work in capturing some fun moments of us on stage. This is the first season where we've gotten the pictures so soon after finishing a show and since I always enjoy sharing them with my you go! My favorite "Vogue" scene, where I go into diva mode and represent for my ladies! Being the finale bride at the end of the second "father" is very emotional in giving me away to my "groom" lol.   This is the "Vogue" scene during the second show (we do two fashion shows and alternate outfits). When I come out as the last model, I do a 3-count to the other models on stage, which signals them to do their last "Vogue pose" before exiting the stage. Me and my "groom," Sam in our opening scene for the second sho