TAMPA BAY MODELING
REFERENCE GUIDE FOR MODELS
Bay Modeling - New
Models: How to get started - Tampa
Modeling Agencies - Tampa
Modeling Schools - Modeling
FAQ - Comp
Cards - Portfolios
Modeling Jobs - Modeling
ASKED MODELING QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
is a professional, educated opinion, and should not be taken as advice
of any kind. Use at your own risk; anyone doing anything described on
this site assumes complete liability.
us and ask us your modeling
questions! The best questions will be added to this Tampa Bay Modeling
modeling FAQ! A special thanks go out to our friends at
and Advanced Model for their
assistance with our FAQ, as well as modeling, entertainment, and business
expert C. A. Passinault.
C. A. Passinault is the author of the upcoming Advanced Model modeling
book, which covers both independent and agency modeling. He is the lead
photographer at his Tampa
photography and design services company, Aurora
PhotoArts Tampa Bay Photography and Design, and is well respected
by many professionals in the modeling industry. C. A. Passinault is the
president of the Tampa
Photography Society, an organization of Tampa
professional photographers. C. A. Passinault is affiliated with Tampa
Bay Modeling, is the director of Independent Modeling, is the author of
Advanced Model, and will be the publisher for the upcoming Advanced Model
I model material?
The following is an index of the answer to this question (select the first
one to begin reading): Am
I model material?
- Modeling Job Scams - Model
Placement Scams - Modeling
Management And Modeling Agency Scams - Modeling
Photography And Exploitation Scams
1. Am I model material?
That depends on you. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have
to be considered to be drop-dead gorgeous, or beautiful, to be a model,
or to have a modeling career. The image of the super model and the fashion
modeling career is a common misconception about modeling, and while there
is a need for that type of model, that’s high end modeling which
only a few can actually do. It’s a difficult type of modeling to
work in, and only 1 in 10,000 can even attempt it.
Modeling is marketing; it is a visual form of marketing which is used
to sell a product or service.
If you can achieve a look that someone is looking for to sell what they
are marketing, you can model. For most modeling, such as lifestyle modeling,
as many as 1 in 5 can work as a model if they market their careers well.
In Florida, the most common type of modeling job is the promotional model.
If you are outgoing and easily get along with people, promotional modeling
can be done by just about anyone, regardless of how they look. Promotional
modeling, however, is the very bottom of the modeling industry, and the
pay is low. Promotional modeling jobs usually pay $12.00 to $15.00 an
hour, with most jobs lasting four hours. A typical promotional modeling
job might be handing out samples of a product in a store. Yes, as unglamourous
as it is, someone handing out pieces of hot dog on a toothpick in a grocery
store is promotional modeling; you have a physical person, whom only has
to be approachable, the model, promoting a product.
If promotional modeling is all that you want to do, you do NOT need a
portfolio or composite cards. You only need a picture, a resume, business
cards, and a cover letter. Promotional modeling does not pay enough to
make the investment into a modeling portfolio or composite cards worth
it, although, if you aspire to do other types of modeling, or you do other
types of modeling, a portfolio and composite cards will give you an advantage
over other promotional models.
It’s important that, as an independent model, that, unless you are
trying to book a promotional modeling job, that you downplay how many
promotional modeling jobs that you have worked. If trying to book a commercial
modeling or print modeling job, volunteering the information that you’ve
done a lot of promotional modeling can hurt you. You don’t want
to be typecast as a promotional model (Trust me on this. Promotional modeling,
while there is nothing wrong with it, is looked down on compared to other
types of modeling. It is low end, or plankton, modeling, which is seen
at the bottom end of the food chain. Some might even consider that promotional
models are not real models, or, at the very least, not take them as seriously.
I am one of the ones who weighs out the work history of a model, and who
looks for balance of a variety of work, and especially work history which
is relevant to the job which I am casting. When I am booking a model into
one of my projects, I tend to look at their resume, and since I work more
with print modeling, being a photographer, I take the model less seriously
if I see too much promotional modeling work on their resume. You don’t
want me going “Well, their portfolio is ok, but their work history
is not. They are just another promotional model, and I don’t know
if they have the experience which this job requires. I’m going to
play it safe, especially when my client is paying for this shoot for their
marketing; if the model chokes, it will reflect badly on me, and I might
lose the client over cost overruns when I have to redo the shoot. I’m
not losing money, or risk losing a client, over a model, especially when
there are so many qualified professional models to choose from. Next model!”
I look for tear sheets and range in their modeling portfolio, because
I want to be sure that the model is right for the modeling job, that they
have experience in what the job entails, and that it will be cost-effective
to book them into the job. Nothing is worse than booking a model into
a job, and to find out that, once you’re on the set and are paying
out money to get a project done, that the model isn’t up to it.
Your only credibility as a professional model is in your portfolio, your
resume, and in the investment into your career that you can demonstrate.
You want the modeling job to have confidence in you as a model, and that
you experience and skill will make the job easier and less expensive.
Also, in any modeling job, models who show that they are serious enough
to invest in their career, such as those who have a professional portfolio,
composite cards, and a real web site with a .Com, are taken seriously.
I don’t take models who operate off of social networking and portfolio
networking sites, and models who do not have a professional portfolio
or composite cards, seriously. - C. A. Passinault).
Tradeshow modeling and Convention Modeling are higher levels of the low
end of promotional modeling, and they pay more while requiring more skills.
These modeling jobs are best booked with the use of a modeling portfolio
and composite cards, as the standards are higher. They are still promotional
modeling jobs, however.
Tampa Bay Modeling Note 02/21/11 - One of the main issues that we’ve
had with online modeling job boards is that they are mostly filled with
promotional modeling jobs. The more coveted, and higher paying, print
modeling jobs which are traditionally booked through modeling agencies
are still booked through modeling agencies. While this is changing, it
hasn’t changed enough. In 2011 and 2012, Tampa Bay Modeling, Florida
Modeling Career, and Independent Modeling are going to change this; we
are even going to go out of our way, call those jobs up, and convince
them that they can book those jobs without going through an agency, using
the same tactics and tools which models can access, and use, from our
site free of charge. At the same time, we will also educate them with
the latest tactics to defeat those whom would use their job posts in modeling
job scams. There is more, too, but we can’t go into it. Let’s
just say that we have a very elaborate program, full of checks and balances,
which we worked on for many years, and that it is going to work. Of course,
the promotional modeling jobs will still be found on modeling job boards,
and they are welcome to post, but that is not the focus of our efforts.
We will be taking work away from th agencies, and will be helping models
book more lucrative modeling jobs on their own.
The middle market of modeling is the focus of Tampa Bay Modeling, since
there are lots of modeling opportunities available for serious models.
Most of the middle market of modeling directly involves advertising, and
includes print modeling.
For more about types of modeling, fair pay rates, and requirements, see
our modeling job rates section.
With this question answered, we now have to add some important information.
Because modeling is a desirable career, and the illusion of glamour (which
has nothing to do with the actual definition of glamour modeling), with
that career, modeling can be dangerous.
You have to know what you are doing, especially if you are a new model
just starting out.
That’s one of the purposes of Tampa Bay Modeling, which is a regional
modeling resource site for the Tampa Bay market. Tampa Bay Modeling has
enough information for new models to learn from so that they know what
they are doing when they finally start modeling. Tampa Bay Modeling is
also for experienced professional models, too, but that information, and
the career tools that we offer free of charge, will be more relevant for
you after you start modeling.
Modeling, because it is a “dream career” of lucrative possibilities
(although sobering realities, once you are actually modeling and find
out what it’s all about. It’s rewarding, sure, but not nearly
as cool as you might think), is full of scams! Combating modeling scams
is another purpose of Tampa Bay Modeling, and we are here to help you
identify modeling scams and avoid them. If you are scammed, your modeling
career can end before it has a chance to begin!
By far, the most common modeling scams in the Tampa Bay market are modeling
job scams, followed by model placement scams, modeling management scams,
model exploitation scams, modeling photography scams, and modeling agency
The main thing that all of these modeling scams have in common is to entice
people with the promise of jobs, introductions to other parties, or other
opportunities. Once contacted, the modeling scam then tries to sell the
inquiring person something, which is “required” in order for
them to be considered for the opportunity. Don’t fall for this!
A modeling job scam advertises modeling jobs. Once contacted, they require
you to buy something, a service, or modeling classes before they can refer
you to the job. The offer often claims that no modeling experience is
necessary, which is ridiculous; no professional job is going to book an
inexperienced amateur, especially when there are a lot of experienced
professional models to select from.
NEVER buy ANYTHING, or allow yourself to be referred to any service, from
someone who advertises a modeling job!
Why is it that we’ve never seen a single advertised modeling job
turn out to be legitimate? Smart models avoid advertised modeling jobs.
Note, though, that advertising a modeling job is not the same thing as
posting a modeling job posting on a modeling job board, although the common
sense rule that you don’t buy anything from those who post modeling
jobs still applies. Advertising a modeling job in the newspaper, on the
radio, or on television is not cheap. There really isn’t that much
of a market for modeling jobs, especially when there are plenty of qualified
professional models to choose from. How do they make their money? If it
is cheaper to go through an agency to find models for a job, the modeling
job advertisement cannot be legitimate, in our opinion. Of course, posting
on a modeling job board is either free, or low cost, so it is more likely
to be legitimate, as long as they are not selling anything. The cheaper
the costs for promoting a modeling job opportunity, the safer it generally
Model placement scams are even more idiotic. A modeling and talent agency,
which, in Florida, is the only type of business which can legally make
money by referring models into jobs, is a middleman in the modeling industry.
Model placement companies are a middleman to the agency middleman, so
you work with two middlemen. It does not make any sense to chain together
middlemen in any career, as it makes doing business, for the model, much
more expensive, and therefor, less cost effective. What they do is advertise
modeling opportunities and modeling jobs, and they sell classes and portfolios.
Model placement scams have a big pitch, too, and they offer to introduce
you to agencies. So, you get a middleman introducing you to another middleman.
At the most, model placement scams are modeling development businesses,
or pseudo modeling schools (which bait models with the payoff of “introducing
them” to the right agencies) which are a poor value, and they are
not worth it. You can introduce yourself to agencies at no charge, or
even go to a professional photographer to get the portfolio that you need,
and then go out and get modeling jobs on your own! Why a professional
photographer who specializes in modeling portfolios? Because the photographer
is at least honest about what they are in business to do, and they do
not mislead anyone. As long as the photographer can demonstrate a history
of doing good modeling portfolios, they are a much better, and safer,
Also, regarding any modeling business, take the BBB (Better Business Bureau)
rating, or accreditation, with a grain of salt. It does not make them
legitimate. The BBB is basically third party arbitration, and few parties
ever follow through with a dispute through them. Also, anyone can buy
accreditation (We were offered BBB accreditation, but decided to pass
after we found out that it would cost us $600.00 a year. We are a free
modeling resource site, and that kind of money spent to boost our perceived
credibility is not worth it. We’d rather be known by what we do,
and not have to rely on BBB accreditation to make us “legitimate”.
Our actions, and our purpose, make us legitimate! We’re sorry, but
in our opinion, paying money for any kind of seal of approval kind of
makes the credibility of the certification questionable, at best). The
BBB can be useful, but a better way to evaluate any business is common
sense and a little research. They are what they do, and if they use deceptive
advertising or misleading claims, regardless of what accreditation that
they have, they are a scam.
We know of at least one modeling scam which has accreditation through
the BBB, as well as a favorable rating, and we know better! They flaunt
their accreditation and use it in their advertising, which is supposed
to make them a credible, legitimate, professional modeling business. Again,
we know better! We suppose that, in time, that rating will drop, and so
will the accreditation, but how many models will be ripped off, or destroyed,
in the interim to make that happen? Although we respect the BBB, and it
is a useful tool, our opinion is that it is not perfect, and it is not
a one-stop solution for any evaluation process.
Modeling management scams are another common scam. They often advertise
modeling jobs and career opportunities for models. Most modeling management
companies are NOT modeling and talent agencies (ask them if you dare).
If they are not a licensed modeling and talent agency in the state of
Florida, they cannot make any money referring models to the jobs that
they are advertising. How do they make their money? Well, they make their
money by selling services and portfolios to models! Advertising a modeling
job when you cannot legally follow through, by referring models to those
jobs, on what you are advertising, and then turning around and selling
things to the models who contact them in order to be considered for the
modeling job is wrong! In our opinion, it is deceptive advertising, and
deceptive trade practice, bait and switch, and fraud. It needs to be reported
to the authorities.
We’ve never seen a modeling management company turn out to be legitimate.
The ALL have been scams, taking money from models who are easily misled
and giving them nothing of value in return. If the models do happen to
book the job, it is one job which usually doesn’t pay what it should,
and the model never makes their money back!
NEVER BUY ANYTHING FROM ANYONE ADVERTISING A MODELING JOB!
If the modeling management company IS a licensed modeling and talent agency,
well, it’s a working conflict of interest, in our opinion. How is
this, when so many modeling agencies claim to manage models and their
career? Well, it’s because the model works FOR the models whom they
represent. It’s not the other way around. Model do not work for
modeling agencies, and they are not employed by them. An agency is a middleman
which makes money by referring models to modeling jobs. A model is an
independent contractor, and a self contained business, even if they are
represented by an agency, and the agency works FOR the model. This means
that the model is the boss of the agency, for practical purposes. Agencies
managing models is a situation not unlike an employee trying to tell an
employer what to do. What really makes it a conflict of interest when
agencies manage models is that the agency does not exclusively work for
the model (although, ironically, many agencies will try to get the model
to sign an exclusive representation agreement, which traps the model into
only working with that agency in their market), but also works for the
competition of the model. Competition? Of course! Who do you think that
the other models whom are represented by the agency are? All of the models
are competing for the same modeling jobs! If an agency is managing a model
and their modeling career, and telling them what to do when they are supposed
to be working FOR the model, and they are also working for the competition
of that model, which are other models which the agency represents, can
you see why that is a conflict of interest?
Keep it simple and avoid a scam. Never allow a modeling agency to manage
your career. Only use the modeling agency one of many sources of modeling
job leads, and nothing more! Better yet, make the agency work HARDER for
you, and get the edge over the models who are competing against you, by
finding and booking modeling jobs on your own! When the agency realizes
that you are serious about finding and booking modeling work, and that
you ARE booking modeling jobs on your own, they will work that much harder
to refer you to the job first because they won’t want to get cut
out of their commission!
Also, never, ever buy anything from a modeling agency, or from anyone
whom the modeling agency refers you to for things such as portfolios and
comp cards. The only sure way to avoid being scammed by an agency, and
to make sure that they only make money by referring models into jobs,
which is what they are supposed to do, is to get your modeling portfolio
and composite cards before going to any agency!
2. Can I join your
Tampa Bay Modeling, Independent Modeling, Florida Modeling Career, and
Advanced Model are NOT modeling and talent agencies. We’re better.
We are modeling resource sites and online publications which have information
that models can use to empower their modeling career. We are here for
both independent and agency represented models.
Regarding Tampa modeling and talent agencies, smart models will only use
modeling agencies as one of many sources of modeling jobs. Models should
never allow an agency to manage their modeling careers, or sign an exclusive
representation agreement with any agency. Why? To do so will make a model
dependent upon the modeling agency, and will limit their ability to book
How? A modeling agency is supposed to work for a model, finding them modeling
jobs and referring them job leads. When an agency is working for the model,
it is a conflict of interest, in our opinion, for an agency to manage
a model (which is like an insubordinate employee bossing around an employer,
and telling them what to do), especially when the agency also works for
the competition of the model. Who is this competition? Other models whom
are also represented by the agency! Those same models are competing with
you for the modeling jobs that you are trying to book! Can you see how
this can be a conflict of interest, as well as lead to manipulative politics?
Keep it simple. To avoid being unfairly manipulated by agencies which
cross the line, only use modeling agencies as one of many sources of jobs.
Obtain representation from as many of them as possible, and make them
compete against each other to get you the jobs that you deserve. Also,
never buy anything from an agency, or from anyone whom an agency refers
you to. Modeling and talent agencies, in Florida, can only legally make
money by referring models into jobs, and that’s it.
When it comes to modeling and talent agencies, models call the shots!
3. How do I get started
The best answer is to invest in your modeling career by investing in a
modeling portfolio and composite cards from a professional photographer
who specializes in modeling portfolios, and whom is not affiliated with
any modeling agency.
Also, read our section about how to get started in modeling.
4. What are fair rates
for modeling portfolios and composite cards?
As of March 2011, the best range of rates for modeling portfolios in the
Tampa Bay market is between $300.00 to $550.00 for a six look modeling
portfolio. Why six looks? Because the standard composite card requires
at least five, and six will give you a decent starting portfolio for your
Anything less than three looks for a modeling portfolio is not worth it.
Also, stay away from photographers who charge less than $300.00 (they
don’t know what they are doing, in our opinion, if they try to sell
models on low rates) or photographer who charge over $550.00 for a six
look modeling portfolio (those photographers rip off models, in our opinion).
Also, in our opinion, stay away from modeling portfolio photographers
who “shoot by the hour”, which will rush a shoot and undermine
quality. Photographers who charge by the hour, and who offer modeling
portfolio packages with so-called “unlimited” looks for a
couple of hours of time will give you cookie cutter pictures which may
prove to be useless for a modeling portfolio. We’ve even seen one
who stated that a make up artist is not needed because the “agencies
want to see the natural look of a model”. In that case, what is
the point of the model having a modeling portfolio done in the first place?
We strongly disagree with that natural look statement, which is something
that old school modeling books indicate a model needs to show when they
send in snapshots to an agency for representation consideration (and,
of course, the agency is supposed to refer the model to a photographer
to a “real” photographer to take their portfolio pictures,
which opens the doors to all sorts of modeling scams, including photo
mill agencies which make money by selling photography to models, and not
the way that they are supposed to, by actually finding them work!). The
photographer who states that a model has to show a natural look in their
modeling portfolio does not know what they are doing, in our opinion,
and they have no clue what the point of a modeling portfolio, and composite
cards, is. What do they think that they are doing? Are they in business
to take money from people can give them rushed portfolios full of mediocre
pictures which all look the same? The best modeling portfolios show the
widest range of looks which the model can obtain! The wider the range
of looks in a modeling portfolio, the more marketable the model is, and
the more modeling jobs they will book. Composite cards, being a snapshot
of the highlights of the more extensive modeling portfolio, are the same
Although a make up artist is not required if the model is competent in
applying makeup, booking one for your portfolio shoot is highly recommended.
You WILL require the use of make up in any modeling portfolio shoot!
Find a professional photographer who shoots by the look (and not by the
hour), and who knows what they are doing. Ask them plenty of questions.
There are too many portrait photographers and wedding photographers trying
to shoot models, and they won’t be able to give you what you need.
Regarding the fair prices of composite cards, which you can only obtain
after you have established a modeling portfolio, it depends upon a variety
of factors. See what they photographer charges for composite card design,
which most modeling photographers also do. Shop around for printers, and
compare prices with quality, as well as quantity. Sometimes, it is more
cost effective to get more cards printed. There are two reasons for this.
First, higher quality printing is more expensive to set up, and higher
print runs will help offset the price of each composite card. Secondly,
a model whom is represented by more than one agency, and whom also books
work on their own independently, is going to require a lot more comp cards.
The best deal which we found? Comp cards printed on 12 PT to 14 PT (14
is better) paper stock, UV coated, and printed with a 4/4 color process.
The minimum run is usually 900 to 1,000 cards, but most models go through
that amount within 6 months. We’d quote rates here, but they vary;
compare rates for these specifications.
As a rule of thumb, avoid cheap laser cards (under 200 print runs, printed
on flimsy paper, with the composite cards having washed-out color). You
want to stand out from other models, and not blend in with another mediocre
laser composite card.
TIP: Even if you are an independent model, make sure that your composite
cards have a blank space on them where modeling agencies can place their
agency contact sticker. You can then give each of your agencies their
own supply of composite cards which they can use to market you with. A
smart way to do this is to have your composite card designer place your
default contact information on the composite card space, and then allow
agencies to place their sticker over that when they are using your cards.
5. Do I need to go
through a modeling agency to book jobs?
No. Not at all. Even if a modeling book states that you have to, think
again. They are wrong (most of these modeling books are written by models
who are fully invested in the agency way of doing things. Although these
models realize that models do not have to go through an agency to find
and book work, what do you think that they are going to say? Do you think
that these models are going to give out advice which undermines their
agency friends? They are not going to rock the boat that they are in!).
Models can, and do, represent themselves, and they do find and book modeling
jobs on their own, without going through an agency. Doing so saves the
model agency fees, as well as the modeling job; they both cut out the
middleman, which is smart business.
This said, a smart model will leave no stone unturned. Smart models not
only find and book modeling jobs on their own, but they also obtain representation
from as many modeling agencies as possible. This maximizes their exposure
to modeling jobs, as well as their marketability. Additionally, if a model
demonstrates that they book work on their own, they actually have leverage
over the agencies, and it makes them work harder for the model. Why? Because
the agency knows that the model is bookable, and marketable, and they
won’t want to risk losing out on a sure-commission. Obviously, this
gives the independent model and advantage over the agency-only models,
too. The agency will realize that they will have to try to book the independent
mode into the jobs, or risk losing out on money when the model books it
on their own.
The only stupid models are the ones whom allow themselves to be dependent
upon, and managed, by the agencies. Independent models have the advantage
over the agency models.
6. Can I book a modeling
job without any experience as a model? A commercial stated that they were
looking for models, and that no experience was necessary.
No. If you were a business with resources and money on the line, would
you book an amateur to do a job?
We’ve never seen a single one of these commercials for modeling
jobs turn out to be legitimate. What happens is that they bait the models
into modeling classes and other expensive, but worthless, services with
the promise of a modeling job. If ANY modeling job offer states that no
experience is necessary, they are either a modeling scam, or they do not
know what they are doing. Stay away.
Anyone who baits models with the promise of a modeling job, and then turns
around and sells them services in order to be considered, is doing a bait
and switch. It is a deceptive marketing practice, and it is fraud. Can
you trust someone who has to lie to you to get you to buy what they are
really selling? Can they do anything for your career is they are advertising
something that they are not really selling?
Anyone who pays out money to advertise a modeling job has to make their
money back some way. Are they a modeling and talent agency? In Florida,
they MUST be a licensed modeling and talent agency, with a TA#, in order
to be able to make ANY money by referring models into ANY job. If they
are not an agency, but they are advertising modeling jobs, how are they
able to make back their money? If they cannot make money by following
through on what they are advertising, is buying anything from them really
in your best interest? Are they going to find you worthwhile modeling
jobs if they cannot legally make money referring you to those jobs? Never
by anything from an agency, or from an agency referral. Likewise, never
buy anything from anyone who advertises a modeling job.
A legitimate modeling job offer will consider you without any obligation
to buy anything.
Experience-wise, a professional modeling portfolio demonstrating what
you are capable of as a model is the minimum which is required to be seriously
considered for any modeling job. As a rule of thumb, the more of an investments
that you can demonstrate in you modeling career, the more seriously you
will be taken.
You can also learn what you need to know about modeling, and gain experience,
but killing two birds with one stone and building your modeling portfolio
with a qualified modeling portfolio photographer. How do you find them?
Well, the first rule of thumb is to only invest in services from a reputable
professional who is honest about what they are in business to do. You
should also look at their portfolio, ask plenty of questions, and check
We recommend skipping advertised modeling jobs, modeling agency placement
companies, modeling management businesses, and any modeling schools (We
have never seen a modeling school which was worth it! We’re the
only modeling school that models need, and we are free.). Also, do not
go to any modeling agency for representation consideration until you have
a modeling portfolio and composite cards.
7. Can I build a modeling
portfolio with TFP/ TFCD?
You can try to, but you’ll waste a lot of time for pictures which
won’t help you compete with models who have invested in their careers.
It’s also risky, and even dangerous, to do any kind of work with
amateur guys with cameras who shoot for free, and whom often have ulterior
motives which may not be in your best interest. You might even pick up
some bad habits. We’ve known of some models who have crippled their
careers before they had a chance to start by going this route; in a nutshell,
you get what you pay for.
TFP/ TFCD is a case of amateurs helping amateurs, or the blind leading
the blind. You’ll have a hard time becoming a professional model
that way. Additionally, a professional photographer whom is the position
to give you a modeling portfolio which will make you marketable and competitive
is not going to work for free. It’s their profession, after all,
and it’s a business, just like modeling. You will only get out of
your modeling career what you put into it.
Avoid TFP/ TFCD if you wish to be taken seriously as a model, and have
a modeling career. You are going to have to invest in your career if you
ever hope to be able to compete with professional models who are also
trying to book the jobs which you are trying to book.
Tampa Bay Modeling, Independent Modeling, and our sister modeling sites
will be making things tough for people who do this. Our Risk Analysis
System, or RAS, will teach modeling jobs to evaluate the professionalism,
and the risk of booking models, on the investment which they demonstrate
in their portfolios, comps, and web sites. Statistically, it pans out,
8. Am I hot, or sexy,
enough for modeling?
No. Do you have to be?
Avoid anyone in the modeling industry whom uses the words “hot”
and “sexy” to describe what modeling is all about. They not
only do not have a clue what they are talking about, but the use of such
words is often a red flag which might indicate that they are looking to
exploit a model.
Modeling is a visual form of marketing. If you have a look which a business
could use to help market a product or service, and you have the look which
is appropriate for the modeling job, you’ll book the job.
“Hot” and “sexy” are words used to describe fashion
modeling, which is more Miami than Tampa Bay (there are rarely ever any
fashion modeling jobs here, by the way, so move to Miami if you want to
specialize in fashion modeling, as they are a secondary market, and Tampa
Bay is a local, or “third tier”, market. Tampa Bay is more
commercial modeling than anything else, although just about anyone can
do common, low end promotional modeling work, if that’s what you
want to do). Fashion modeling is a highly specialized, competitive field
of modeling which most people are not able to do. For starters, there
are height restrictions (for women, 5' 7'’ or taller), as well as
a highly attractive appearance. Only 1 in 10,000 are cut out for fashion
modeling, and of those, only one in 100 will ever be able to make it a
career (although, independent models can substantially increase their
Fashion modeling is what the layman thinks of when they think of modeling.
There is a lot more to modeling than that misleading image, and the truth
of the matter is that the realities of modeling is often much more sobering.
It’s not an easy, or even glamourous, career, although it can be
With commercial modeling, which is the bread and butter of the Tampa Bay
modeling industry, just about anyone who has a marketable look can do
this kind of work if they invest in their career and work it. Commercial
modeling includes lifestyle modeling, and the models whom you see in catalogs,
newspaper ads, and in television commercials are commercial models.
Going to those cliched words, “hot” and “sexy”
are also used to describe high risk modeling work such as boudoir, glamour,
nude, lingerie, and fetish modeling work. Other types of high risk modeling
work include modeling in skimpy bikinis, and /or in provocative poses
which can be taken out of context easily.
As a rule of thumb, keep it family friendly until you know what you are
doing. If you wouldn’t feel comfortable showing your modeling photographs
to your parents or children, don’t do those kind of pictures! “Sexy”
has no business being in the portfolio of the new model! Stay away from
photographers who insist that you have to have these kind of pictures
in your portfolio, as they may hurt your career, and your marketability,
as a model.
Remember that pictures are forever, literally, and once taken, you have
no control over them. They cannot be undone, and the only way to avoid
pictures that can undermine your marketability as a model is to avoid
taking them in the first place.
We’ve seen more than one talented model ruin their careers with
nude and risque pictures taken of them all over the Internet. Most businesses
will not book a model who’s poor judgement ruins their ability to
be used for what they are selling. It’s a conflict of interest.
While there is nothing wrong with high risk modeling, the risks must be
addressed. Only consider it if you have been modeling for a while, and
you know what you are doing. Only consider it if that’s the type
of modeling that you want to specialize in, and remember that once you
start it, you will limit your marketability as a model, and your ability
to book most modeling work.
As a model, you need to make yourself as marketable as possible. As a
new model, you need to minimize risks until you know what you are doing.
High risk modeling work limits your marketability as a model, and it can
cripple your modeling career! Use extreme caution!
What happened to your monthly mail bag and to model Monica Stevens?
How do I become a model?
How do I obtain a modeling portfolio?
What is a composite card?
What is a web comp?
Do I need to get a model agency to be a model?
There was a commercial saying that they needed models for major fashion
shows and print ads. They also said that no experience was needed. I heard
it on the radio, so it has to be true! Is this a good way to become a
Can your advertisers be trusted? If so, is it alright to buy the services
of a modeling school advertised on your web site?
08. A photographer I found said that they were
the lowest cost photographer in the Tampa Bay area. Should I buy services
09. A photographer I found said that he was building
his portfolio and he offered me a TFP / TFCD (Time For Prints / Time For
CD ) photography session at no charge. Is it true? Can I really build
a modeling portfolio for free?
10. A photographer from New York, which he described
as a major fashion market, is in town for a shoot and he is offering low
cost portfolio services! I really want to shoot with a top fashion photographer!
Is it ok for me to shoot with him?
11. A wedding photographer offered me a modeling
portfolio at a reasonable rate. Although his wedding work is great, we
doesn’t seem to be able to show me many model portfolio pictures
that he has done, and the few that I see are so-so. What do you think?
12. A top modeling photographer insists that I
must come alone to our modeling portfolio photography shoot, and that
I am not allowed to bring along an escort. He said that escorts are distracting.
Should I go alone?
13. Should I invest in cosmetic surgery or enhancements,
such as breast implants, for my modeling career?
14. Is it true that an art director will give me
a modeling job without an modeling agency? Will advertising agencies book
models who are independent and who do not come to them through a modeling
15. What is a pay voucher, and where do I get them?
16. Should I invest in a modeling school?
17. How do I find modeling jobs?
18. How do I book modeling jobs?
Do you have a question?