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August 16, 2006
need to find photographers and qualified professionals who can help them
build their portfolio and establish their career tools BEFORE going to
any model and talent agency. This is the only sure way to avoid potential
conflicts of interest and the possibility of being misled and scammed
by an agency. Models, use caution if an agency tells you to avoid getting
portfolio photography services before going to the agency or that you
have to use the services which they recommend.
We’ve said it before, and we will
start saying it even more. There are some serious professional and ethical
issues with some model and talent agencies in the Tampa Bay area.
In all honesty, most models that I know only trust one agency in this
area, and the agency that we trust is Alexa model and talent management
in south Tampa (That’s not to imply that all the other agencies
are bad, either, that’s just our opinion- there are other agencies
that are reputable).
What’s ironic is that professional models no longer have to put
up with the B.S. that agencies seem to bring into our careers. It’s
not like a lot of us need agencies that much anymore. While we do use
agencies as a source of model job leads, most of us now compete with agency
bookers and book model jobs on our own! In our opinion, the way that the
modeling industry is set up is flawed, and model and talent agencies are
working-conflicts of interest and should never be taken seriously as a
source of guidance for a modeling career because most of them do not have
the best interests of the models in mind. Most of the bookers who are
dispensing career advice and referring models to photographers and other
services are unqualified, minimum wage workers who are little more than
glorified receptionists. These bookers spend much of their careers cold-calling
businesses and are not qualified to manage models or discern what quality
modeling career tools are.
Do you really want professional, qualified advice on what you need as
a model for your modeling career? Ask the professionals who do photography
and portfolio services as a career. After all, you are what you do, and
there is never anyone more qualified to give advice than the professionals
with the most experience in their field. If you want to know what is effective
in a model portfolio or what makes a good picture, ask a model portfolio
photographer who does it professionally. If you need a modeling web site
or effective model composite cards, ask professionals who do that for
a living. Don’t ask some middleman who has no experience in the
professions that they are referring others to. If they have never done
it themselves professionally, what makes them the authority in that field?
Tampa Bay Modeling is now working on a whistle-blowing resource for agency
bookers and employees. Only agency workers know all of the details of
what their agencies are doing, and if there is anything unethical going
on, they owe it to the models who their agency represents and to themselves
to make things right and to contact the authorities. This resource will
be online shortly, and agencies only need to worry if they are doing something
wrong. If model and talent agencies are working within the boundaries
of the law and are conducting business honestly, then professional models
proudly support them and they have nothing to worry about. As a professional
model, I recognize legitimate agencies as being integral to my career,
and will utilize several agencies and their qualified bookers as a source
of model job and go-see leads in addition to booking model jobs on my
own. I also realize that agencies have no business trying to manage my
career or making me use certain resources because of the potential of
a conflict of interest, especially when the agency is a working conflict
of interest because they also represent models who are my competition.
We are not anti-agency. Tampa Bay Modeling is not against reputable
agencies. Those who are breaking the law and who are taking advantage
of models, however, are about to have a fight on their hands.
Here is to justice well served and to saving professional models from
model and talent agency scams
in the Tampa Bay area.
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