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, March 23, 2012

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 your picture--at least it does if you do your research and choose the right professional(s) to work with. I would go into more detail about this but the link above pretty much covers all the main points.

As for myself, I paid for shoots in order to create my modeling portfolio for my agency in the beginning of my career but now that I've got experience, including tearsheets, I don't really need to pay for shoots to build my portfolio anymore. Whenever I want to update my pictures, I'll reach out to the network of photographers I know/have worked with. Since we have an established working relationship, they'll almost always do free test shoots with me so it saves me money and we're both able to add new photos to our portfolios.


Anonymous said...

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

Dania Denise said...

Hi, Anonymous! You'll find the answer to your question in its own post, titled "Answering a Reader Question #341." Thanks for reading!