Modeling agencies and the questions we need to consider


We answer the question “Should I apply for a modeling agency if I don’t have a portfolio”.
As a photographer Virginia gets asked this question very often, if you are in the same situation – we’ve got you covered.

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Photographer: Verginiya Yancheva
Stylist: Stanimira Stefanova
MUA: Marina Mladenova
Hair: Andrey Andreev 
Model: Tanya IvetFashion


Don't forget to this podcast

Hello, photography lovers!

Welcome to Episode 267 of the fashion photography podcast.

Should I apply for modeling agency without a portfolio?

And the answer of this question, I believe is going to be valuable for both models and photographers.
Because as a photographer, I’m frequently аsked exactly this question.
So I thought it’s going to be beneficial for us all to know the answer.

First off, when we talk about modeling agency, we need to consider the job.

  • This is very important, because you need to know that the modeling is not for everyone.
  • And also, it’s now forever.

Both of these things, I believe, are truly important, because especially if you’re a woman, you just cannot look at the modeling career, something that you’re going to do until the rest of your life. Honestly, there are just very few amazing models that we all know. And they’re not famous models, but more like legends.

And I’m not saying that it’s not possible for you to become one of the legends, but probably not everyone is going to have this success.

So you must know that this is probably not going to continue for far too long.
And by the way, if you remember, this story is very, very different.
Because we all know that the older and the man or the better they look.

Regardless of your gender, you need to consider if the job is the right one for you.

And in order to do that, you can just answer a few very simple questions.
For example:

  • Are you going to be satisfied with the odd hours that this job may require?
  • And also if you’re having a different job, and you wants just earn some side money from modeling – Can you actually combine your profession and the modeling considering the hours that we’re talking about?
  • Also, modeling can often include traveling. Are you into that or you are definitely not?
  • Another very important question is, for example, what kind of model you can be, are you going to be runway model or editorial model and what’s more suitable for the way you look, the second category of questions for this job is if you are suitable for this kind of work, because it’s not enough to be just tall, if you want to be a runway model, it’s not enough to be just with good skin, if you’re going to be an editorial model. It’s a combination of many small and different things that can make you the perfect combination for a certain job, you must be good at getting along with other people and understand what people are giving you directions at the same time, you must be aware that you won’t be the center of attention, modeling is actually closer to acting.
  • And if you just want to have some good portraits of yourself better just hire a photographer for a session this way, you have some very beautiful images, you have some really presentable photographs. And at the same time, you won’t be too much out of your comfort zone. Because if you are a model, and all you wanted at the beginning was just a few good photos of yourself, this probably something that you don’t want to turn into a career, and it’s going to be better for you if you reconsider it even before doing the wrong step.
  • If you have some sort of doubt in yourself, it’s always a good idea to get a second opinion and better ask someone who’s involved in the industry.
    This way, you’re going to receive a real honest answer to all of your questions.

    Once you’re done with all that, and you are completely sure that one you want to do is to apply for a modeling agency, you have to:
  • Carefully pick the agency that you want to go to,
    you probably want to go to some big agency simply because this agency is not going to just bring you more work, but they’re going to give you comfort, it’s the easiest way to make sure that you are going to be safe there. And your safety is the most important part in this story.
  • Once you pick the agency, you can take a look at their website and see what are the options for applying as a model.
  • Or you can take a look at the events that they’re organizing. And you can go to an open event.
    Many agencies are having open castings and only have to do is to just appear at the right date, place and time. And you can simply go and meet in person with the Booker’s. And it’s just amazing experience because you can see those people are the right one for you. And the other thing you can easily say by looking just at their faces, whether you are going to fit in their agency or not. And there is another big plus to that – you can see your competition.
  • But if you decide to apply through their website, you can simply send some good regular photos, what they usually require is full length, portrait and a close up.
    Try also to have the same photos from  both sites, because they want to see every little detail before they meet you in person. So you can actually save time through that.
    Another very important part is to not wear too much makeup because they want to see your skin and the condition of it. So even if you’re without makeup at all, trust me, they can tell them whether your face is going to work for them or not. So you don’t need a makeup.


If you receive a YES

and you still have some doubts about the agency, you can simply reach out to other models.
And you can ask them the questions that you have and see what’s their level of satisfaction, or you can simply try it out, sign a contract, whatever you do, don’t forget this step.
Because it’s super important, as I said, For you safety, and don’t forget, it’s a job.
So for every job, you want to have a contract, then if you have the contract, if you have a complete, yes, most likely the agency can offer you some of the photographers from their network, the best part is that they’re probably going to offer you better prices, if they’re doing your models test. Because usually we do photographers, we are having some arrangements with each and every modeling agency. So if we’re doing paid test, usually, we’re having two or three models per day. So we can offer for lower prices, if we have more models to come to our studio.
But if you’re coming to me as a wannabe model, you should probably expect higher prices, because I have no idea if you know how to move and how much time is going to take me.
And usually the models from the agency they have some sort of idea how to move and what to do in front of the camera.
So it’s usually taking less time and in exchange of that we’re giving lower prices.

If you have received a NO

from the agency. Don’t forget that this is not the last agency.

And if you have received several NOs, but you feel like you belong to the business.

Maybe you just want to help the Booker’s imagination and it is worth it to invest in a professional photoshoot.
There are very different modeling agency. They’re very different type of models, and there are many different opportunities.

So don’t forget that guys. I hope this podcast was helpful for you. Don’t forget to share it with your network. big big thank you to all of you guys for being here. And to just remind you that our friends from Lucy’s magazine and shoestring magazine are waiting for your fashion and beauty editorials. Thank you again amazing people and I cannot wait to see you next Wednesday when we’ll be here with a brand new guest who is a very exciting person and I cannot wait to share this interview with you. Of course don’t forget to have an amazing weekend!

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