After listening to my talk show segment about real modeling agencies and scams modeling agencies She wanted to know more details on the topic I mentioned of calling agencies or asking them about suggessting a photographer that you can work with as a new model. She asked what she could say on the phone or in a letter? Here is my reply:
Yes it is always good to be a self serving person. But you have to always be cautious, since you are nervous of your speaking, I would send your photos/snap shots, or your compcard, in the mail first with a note or letter saying, " I would like to improve my photos so if you like my look and energy seen in these photos, please suggest a photographer I could work with or test with to get some better headshots."
If you want to call an agency, now you have to be careful because the SCAM agencies will want you to pay to work with the photographer through them and you will pay WAYYYYY to much. It is best to focus on two things, two simple shots you need:
a beauty shot, and a smile shot.
If you can get the name of a good photographer from the agency you should call the photographer and let the photographer know. I just need a beauty shot and a smile energy shot, and try to debate a rate you can afford, or work something out with a test. Usually really good photographers will not shoot am aspiring model/actor for free, unless the photographer wants to test the model. During a test a model would bring her own clothind and outfits and if you listen to the other radio segment with Robert Milazzo you will hear what he says about testing. Testing is good because you can get shots, but you DO have to be careful about the photographers you work with, and only work with professionals. If you do not have a lot of money you could perhaps ask the photographer how much it would cost to get simply one look shot. One thing.
Although, honestly before calling, because agencies don't typical like random calls often -but if you are kind on the phone you won't get hung up on and hopefully get a helpful answer....yet I would first try to send a few of those snap shots to print modeling agencies. And at least try a mailing. Then if you don't hear back in a couple weeks you can call and say, " I recently submitted photos to you but I know I could improve on my images and I am wondering if you can suggest a photographer that your models work with for headshots and commercial print photos?" The best way to get an agency usually though is by submission by mail. It is best to try again and again. I work with great agencies today, but it took a few submissions and trying to update my images to get their attention. It took like a year to get a good/decent modeling agency and then longer to get a REALLY good one working with me. After I had some experience.
Focus most on your photos. Even if you are using a digital and your friend is taking the photos, just focus on your smile, natural shots, and energy. Think of ads and editorials. Commercial print modeling agencies want to see your personality. not your fashion poses, no diva looks, just natural. Think of commercials and print ads that involve models of all types...and submit photos that show your face and full body walking, running, or standing. The more submissions you do. The more you work on your photos the better your chances. Modeling for a commercial print model and shorter girl, is all about marketing and targeting yourself with the right photos to the right agencies. -isobella