A model promotes products or helps a brand deliver a message through their visual appearance. They work for a variety of clients and reasons such as posing for artists, modeling clothing apparel, or as extras in a commercial. Some models even specialize in a particular area of modeling, such as runway models, fashion models, or even fitness models.
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How to Become a Model
Step 1: Join an Agency
Models don’t need a formal education to get their foot in the door as models are needed for every age, race, shape, and size. However, getting a modeling agency to represent you is necessary. You’ll need to get photos of yourself and send those to agencies for review. These photos do not have to be expensive professional photos but should represent how you look. Keep your look in these photos simple so an agent can easily evaluate you. Some models do opt to attend a modeling convention or modeling school to get noticed. However, this is not necessary and can be expensive.
Step 2: Gain Experience
While education is not necessary, experience in the field can help you gain more gigs. The more gigs you land the more diverse your experience becomes and this can bring you more work. During this time it’s also important to be aware of your image and ensure you are taking care of yourself. Eat healthy foods and take care of your skin so you can look your best at a moment’s notice.
Step 3: Model Full-Time
You may decide to take modeling to the next level and model full-time. To do this, you may need to expand the type of work you do. For example, you can become a spokesperson for a product or learn to specialize in a specific area of modeling. You may even discover that you are interested to learn more about other careers associated with the modeling industry such as fashion design, product advertising, or photography.
Job Description of a Model
The job description of a model varies by the type of modeling job you are hired for. However, all models must keep an up-to-date portfolio of their work to include photos of themselves via composite cards. This is necessary as potential clients or modeling agencies may sift through portfolios and composite cards before inviting a model to audition. The composite card would also include their body measurements.
Some models specialize in showcasing one of their body parts, such as a hand or foot. There are also fitness models when an agency needs a more athletic model for a shoot. Along with these types of models, some models also do photoshoots to help sell a product and maybe featured in online ads, billboards, websites, catalogs, or even on TV. Other models work to pose for artists or art students. They may be helpful for aspiring artists learning composition or fine artists like painters and sculptors.
Models Career Video Transcript
The term “model” often evokes the glamour of the runway or fashion magazine ads, but there’s more to the world of modeling. Models pose for artists, photographers, or customers to help advertise a variety of products. They may work as fitting models to help clothing designers size styles correctly, or answer questions from consumers about products they represent in public shows. Models work in a variety of locations, from photography studios and runway shows to outdoor locations in all weather conditions. They sometimes need to travel for photoshoots or to meet clients in different cities.
Modeling can be demanding and stressful; models must be ready to work on short notice, with unpredictable, varying hours for each job. Part-time work with periods of unemployment is common. There are no formal education requirements for becoming a model, and modeling schools do not guarantee employment. Models maintain a portfolio of their work for job applications, and may also use social media to build a following and increase exposure. Most modeling agencies accept photos from applicants and interview those who meet the agency’s specifications for appearance, including height, weight, and clothing size. Agencies also host “open calls,” for prospective models to walk in to meet directly with agents and clients.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Models.
National Center for O*NET Development. 41-9012.00. O*NET OnLine.
The career video is in the public domain from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.