Jamila answers your questions on finding modeling jobs!
How do I find modeling jobs? Ashley S., Reno, NV
There are two ways to locate modeling jobs. As a freelance model, the best way to locate modeling jobs is networking with photographers, designers, and model coordinators.
Social media is an excellent method also. On social media, there are many modeling groups and pages that list model calls.
Check out any modeling competitions, and beauty pageants are great opportunities to network and meet other industry professionals.
As a freelance model, attend any type of modeling mixer or “meetups” in your area.
If you are considering freelancing as a model here a few tips:
- Network with people in the modeling industry
- Set up an online portfolio
- Add your name to credible model listing sites
- Make the rounds
- Go to open casting calls
- Treat modeling like a day job
- Consider other fields in your career
Almost all models work with agents, who provide a link between the models and clients. Clients prefer to work with agents, making it very difficult for a model to pursue a freelance career. Agents recruit new models, advice and train models, and promote them to clients in return for a portion of the model’s earnings.
It is imperative that models research an agency or management entity before signing a contract. Talk to other models who are on their roster to investigate their reputation and integrity. Check out the agency website and social media links for vital information on agencies.
Modeling jobs are linked to various markets: New York, Paris, Los Angeles, Milan, and Atlanta. The term “market” refers to the various geographical locations in which models work and earn a living.
For example, New York is a “market,” Paris is “market,” Tokyo is a “market,” and so on. The word “market” can also refer to the category your particular look falls into such as the fashion market, commercial market, plus market, or petite market. Most of the working models resident in one of those “markets.”
While the supermodels you see in major magazines and walking the runways for top clients generally work in every market, there are many successful models who only work in one or two markets.
So, even though you may not get represented by an agency in New York or Paris, you could very well be perfect for Tokyo, Singapore, and other Asian markets. An experienced agent can help guide you to the right market for your particular look.
Becoming a professional model is a process. It rarely happens overnight. Even the models who say “I was just walking down the street one day and the next I was on the cover of Vogue” are really exaggerating.
Perseverance is paramount in the modeling industry. You will receive more “no’s” than “yesses,” but you need only one YES! If modeling is your true passion, never give up!
Stay positive and remember that just because an agency was not able to represent you today it does not mean they will not be interested tomorrow.
Thank you for your questions! See you on the runway!
– Jamila Choyce, MPA
Esteemed African-American Plus Size Entrepreneur, Jamila Jay is the owner of Choyce International Plus Size Model Management, which is the first licensed and bonded agency geared toward Plus Size Talent in California. In 2010, after being laid off as an elementary school teacher, she embarked upon the world of acting and eventually plus size modeling. As a journalist, she has published over 300 articles from plus size fashions, domestic violence, to celebrity interviews worldwide including Canada, Africa, and the Caribbean. In 2017, Choyce has been appointed as Editor-In-Chief, as Courbee’ Revolucion’ Magazine (means curvy revolution in Italian) which showcases and celebrates women with curvy bodies from all over the world. Jamila also runs PlusSizeCasting.com, a casting website geared towards plus-size talent.
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Last modified: May 17, 2018