Should My Child Be a Model?
Finding an Agency
By BabyZone and ParentZone Editors
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Finding an Agency
How do you find them? The place to start is by researching the agencies that advertise in the local Yellow Pages. Whether you're in one of the Big Four cities or anywhere else, this is where to start. But be prepared—the competition is fierce.
Pacholyk says his agency gets around a thousand calls from hopeful parents every week. He and his staff tell each caller that to evaluate a possible model they need the parent to mail in three photos—a closeup of the child's face, a full-body shot, and a picture that shows the child in a pose, but without toys, animals, hats, or costumes.
Pacholyk's request is fairly typical of what you'll hear from most agencies, big town or small: Don't come in. Send some photographs.
Putting Together a Portfolio
Should you spend a fortune to have professional shots taken? We think not. Any serious modeling agency can spot a kid's potential from a few simple, well-exposed, well-focused photographs.
Should you spend a fortune and send Sally to one of those kid's modeling schools that advertise in the Yellow Pages? We believe strongly in the value of education. That's why we teach photography. But we teach adults, and we make no fatuous claims about whether or not each of our students will succeed if he or she chooses to become a professional photographer. Some do. Some don't. It is our experience, however, that many modeling schools make veiled claims that play on the parents' sense of ego and guilt. "Sally's got what it takes to become a really successful model. You're not the type of parent who will stand in the way of Sally's climb to fame and riches, are you?"
Well, what happens when Pacholyk requests those photos? He reports that he receives about 400 sets of photographs out of the thousand. That means over half the interested parents stop before taking the first step!
After reviewing these pictures, Pacholyk and his staff will schedule face-to-face visits with about 100 potential models. Only half of those appointments ever show up, Pacholyk explains. "If they don't show up or call to cancel, they're out because they might do the same thing again on an assignment."