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Should a Model Ever Pay any Fee's?

There is a lot of hype and misinformation on what should and shouldn't a model have to pay for when just starting out. This guide will help you decipher what are normal expenses and what are not.

When you are first starting out as a model, it is like any other hobby or sport. It takes your investment, time and energy to make things actually happen. While there are stories of super models getting scouted at the mall, on the street or even online, they are rare. For 95% of models, they only achieve success by carving a name for themself using the power of the internet.

What is a Modeling Agency?

A modeling agency is a business that represents fashion models. It earns commissions from deals they book. The agency makes money by negotiating with those brand who want to hire their models. There are many reasons to choose a modeling agency. One of the most common reasons is that these agencies have direct contacts in the fashion industry. They will be able to place models with the best companies and brands. Additionally, you'll find the most exciting and lucrative deals through an agent. Whether you're looking to make a living by modeling, or work as a model, a modeling agency will be able to provide you with the best opportunities to make it.

Is it hard to get an agent?

Very. In fact, less than 95% of models get signed to an agency. Why? Because agents are very selective with their time and only invest it in models who either have the right look for a brand they have in mind, or those that have a strong history of booking jobs. Models who can't find an agency should start out by investing in photographs and castings websites. That is the immediate entry into the modeling business for starters in a smaller market.

What are common fee's?

Common fee's for models starting out include head shots, portfolio shoots, personal website or social media branding and more. While some agents allow digital photographs to submit online (taken with a camera at home) they will expect you to invest in test shoots which are done sometimes twice a year at most agencies. Some agents refer you to photographers while others may shoot you in their office.

What shouldn't a model pay for?

A model should never pay to attend a casting or take an advanced pre-payment for a job they didn't first complete. While this seems like common scene, there are some casting calls that promise a booking, however they will send you a check in the mail that is not real. Always use common sense when it comes to applying or attending casting calls.


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