Application basics: Agencies, scouts and a checklist

From the basics to the first steps of your application at a modelling agency: how can you prepare yourself perfectly for the application at an agency? We will now have a look at how you can apply at an agency. As a model you always have to consider that bigger agencies and managements will receive hundreds of applications each day. Some send their applications the way the agencies set and others don’t. Some send their applications via email and attach random pictures (with 5mb each picture) and the download of these pictures takes a couple of minutes. Take the time to inform yourself. Models that are prepared will make an impression within seconds. Especially if you want to get into a top agency. Why is it worth it to be managed?

Benefits of management? A manager will take care of your career

Particularly for new faces it is important to have a reliable and reputable management. They will get you in touch with photographers, who will then help you build your book and show you first steps.

With a reputable model management you will find your way into the industry much easier. You get the chance to travel and discover the world. For young models it is easier to get overseas and with the contacts of a good management, doors will be wide open. With the tips and recommendations of your model management you will have a great selection of photographers from the start and a good overview of the industry. And they will explain to you what you have to consider when you are shooting, travelling or dealing with clients.
Model managers will get you far.

Model managers help out with great contacts. As I already said, photographers and runway jobs contacts. And this is particularly about fashion weeks. Only the best agencies will get invitations for castings during fashion weeks. Your model management will always support you taking new paths and learning new things. They don’t only plan classic photo shoots, they also plan your overseas stay, book your flights and placements with other agencies. For example in New York, Paris, London, Hong Kong, Los Angeles or Milan.
Model managers acquire clients.

Managers consider all factors, not only preparation, journeys and flights and then calculate prices. Your model management will always incorporate usage rights. That does not refer to single photo shoot but the usage and placing of material. Pictures might be needed three months in an online shop or five years for the entire branding of a label. Depending on that, the respective conditions will apply. A model manager takes care of that. You will only see the selected clients and finished, detailed conditions and written contracts.

Number of agencies: It is all about quality

In the end it is clear that you will get more jobs if more agencies represent you. But this story has two sides. Important is that you separate your agencies geographically. If you are represented as a model in Berlin by three agencies, they might all offer you the same job. The client will then choose the cheapest offer. If only one agency would have recommended you for a certain price, you might have earned more. Being exclusive pays off.

If you are represented by a mother agency, they will take are of the organisation and your placement worldwide. The following rules usually apply: one agency in each country! The agencies are big and will get you important clients in the respective national market. I recommend freelancing models, without mother agency, therefore a big agency in each big city in United States (New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, etc.).

Scouts: Get discoverd on the streets

Sometimes models scouts have to refuse to take great girls. Sometimes even good models, because the current board is already full with similar faces. If an agency takes you as new face you will cost them a lot of time, because they have to build you up. Additionally, they also have to trust you – not every new face is trustworthy. So if an agency already has alternatives you might be rejected, even if you are a great model. Don’t let that take you down.

As new model the current board of an agency is always your direct competition and therefore you might get lots of rejections, which you would not have usually gotten. The world will still turn after that … just remember Buddha … start every day with a smile. There are thousand of reasons, why chances might not always directly turn out as success, but no reason to give up.

Application letter: It’s not that big

Besides the requirements and application form of the agencies websites, the easiest way of sending an application is via a well-written email. Two short sentences, your measurements and polaroids. That’s it! So easy.

Your application for a modelling agency will be different to the one you might already know, when having applied for an internship or job. Your application does not contain a letter of application or a CV. Model agencies need clear information and pictures. Model scout see lots of applications daily and they are trained to spot edgy faces and unique new faces due to their long-time work in the industry. They are able to evaluate by just a few pictures and information if you are able to make it as model or not. The easiest form of application:

  1. One or two short sentences about yourself
  2. Name, skills (sports, music, acting etc.) and resp. References (if you have already walked a fashion show for example)
  3. Your measurements
  4. Snaps

That’s it.