- Do...always watch your diet, avoid
- Do... keep reasonable hours.
- Do...keep a daily appointment book,
noting all your business expenses, most of which will be tax-deductible when
income tax time comes. Write down every appointment and every job, noting the
hours, and the address. Consult your accountant on this.
- Do...always be on time for
appointments - even ten minutes early for bookings is a habit, and will be
- Do...always be working on your
portfolio, your book from the start, never missing an opportunity to add to the
collection, requesting copies of tear sheets from ad agencies and magazines, or
actual prints from the photographer. This is very important! If you have done
TV commercials, get a video tape reel going.
- Do...treat your clients as you would
any individual to whom you are trying to sell something - in this case it's YOU!
If your book has some fabulous new pictures, make an appointment to show them
- Do...be sure all of your old clients,
and prospective new ones, get a copy of your new composite, if you have one. If
you have a commercial running that shows you off to your advantage, let your
clients, or would-be clients know about it. This is where 3x5 or Zed cards come
- Do...always be available by telephone
WHEREVER you are. Get an answering service or a machine if necessary. Call in
frequently. If you plan to leave town, even for a short time, let the agency
and/or your answering service know AT ONCE when you're leaving, when you'll be
back, and where you can be reached.
- Do...always have your working
wardrobe ready at a moment's notice. "Ready" means in good condition,
with buttons on, spots off, and creases where they should be in and not where
they shouldn't be; shoes always cleaned and shined.
- Do...apply your make-up before going
to the job, or allow time at the studio to do it on YOUR time - unless of course
it is a cosmetics shot or that you have been advised that a make-up artist will
be on the set.
- Do...always find out the particulars
about any wardrobe, make-up, or hair styling requirements, if any, and be sure
you are properly equipped.
- Do...always act in a professional and
business-like manner, such as having your agency voucher filled out properly for
the studio signature. Be sure to get the voucher signed before you leave.
- Do...if you are unable to keep an
appointment call both the client and the agency. But have a GOOD excuse. When an
appointment is made,, be sure you get the RIGHT address AND the phone number,
and that you understand how to get there, particularly if you're new to the area
and have to rely on public transportation.
- Do...always report any problem,
difficulty, or unpleasantness that might occur on the job to your agency -
better that they hear it first from you, rather than from the client. In this
way they can be prepared for what's coming - however unpleasant. This is part of
- Do...be careful about bad breath and
body odor. Mouth sprays, deodorants, anti-perspirants and dress shields should
be a must in your carryall.
- Do...try to keep abreast of what is
happening in the fashion and advertising world by reading the fashion magazines.
See what is going on with make-up and hair styling. Go to as many fashion shows
as you can. Watch the commercials on TV and see how your "type"
handles certain situations.
- Do...get regular rest. If you can
manage an afternoon nap, so much the better.
- Do...try to get a job as an extra in
a film - at least once, just for the experience. It is not that difficult; just
keep reading the trades every week.
- Do...make it a habit of being nice to
your co-workers, and the staff on any set. That is like paying insurance on your
future. This is particularly important as regards make-up artists, hair
stylists, and assistant directors. You never know what they will be doing the
next time you see them on a set. Remember, they have ambitions, too.
- Do..remember that you have to pay
your "do's" to make it!
- Don't... miss an appointment without
having cancelled it first.
- Don't...discuss pay or rates with a
client. That is what your agency is for.
- Don't ...ever knock an agency,
another model, studio, producer...anyone, to someone in the industry. Too often,
what goes around comes around.
- Don't ...ever tell a photographer you
- Don't...ever feel that you have to do
anything for a photographer, or for any client, that you don't think morally or
ethically right. If you think going to bed with someone is going to land you a
job, think again; things simply do not work that way.
- Don't...bring your mother to an
interview if you're an adult. If you are a child, make sure that you do.
- Don't...give your home phone number
to any client or to anyone you meet who claims they can help you in your work
UNLESS of course you want that person to call on a purely personal basis. Give
them your agency or answereing service number.
- Don't...eat, smoke, or drink in a
studio, on the set or while wearing any garment that you are modeling, unless
someone in authority gives the okay.
- Don't...be pushy or overly agressive,
not to be confused with ambitious, hungry or "greedy and needy".
- Don't...be a prima donna or
condescending to ANYONE - whether on the set, or in a studio, or to a
receptionist, or to an assistant. In this business you never know when one of
them might be calling the shots that could affect you. Assistants have an
amazing habit of suddenly becoming studio bosses, or important photographers, or
directors, or head make-up artists, or important hair stylists. Bookers in
modeling agencies have opened their own agencies. Bad mouthing is dangerous:
tomorrow you may have to eat your words.
- Don't...believe everything you read.
It has happened countless times: someone - often claiming NY or LA origin - will
place an ad in a local newspaper advertising for models: "No expereience
necessary...bring your bathing suit" it may read.
- Don't...go to such interviews alone.
Bring a chaperone or parent. If you have a question, contact a model agency or
school, the Better Business Bureau, chamber of commerce, etc..
- Don't ...pay a fee for evaluation.
Legitimate agencies will tell you if you are the one they want...they are in the
business of hiring models.
- Don't...get involved with anything
you'll be sorry for later. Specifically, involvement with pornographic "modeling"
can follow you for the rest of your professional days. If you want to pose for
sex magazines, or star in a "blue" film or live sex show, then just
pick up one of the many pornographic magazines, find out who publishes it and
write for an appointment. And lots of luck. However, if you want to work later
as a legit model or actor - you'd better buy up all of the negatives of any jobs
you do from porno employers, if such a thing is possible in this era of
- Don't...let REJECTION get to you.
It's part of the business and everyone in the business deals with it at one time
or another. You may be the wrong type or your hair is the wrong color at the
wrong time. There could be a thousand reasons. Keep pushing IF you think you
pass the physical and emotional requirements. Modeling is a career of rejection.
If you can't take the inevitable rejection, don't get involved in modeling.