Tips on submitting to an agency?

eliza88

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I wasn’t sure where to post this. Hopefully this is appropriate. Before covid hit and ruined everything, my old mother agent sent me to an agency for a meeting. While I was there an agent gave me his card. My mother agent told me that we were going to take a different route but didn’t explain why and my stupid self didn’t question it because I trusted her judgement. This is one of the big agencies here in nyc and I really wanted to get signed. Everything seemed to go well so I was a bit confused as to why my mother agent dropped the topic on that agency even after telling me they wanted to send me away for a month. I parted ways with my mother agent a couple months ago so I am sans agent and for the past few days I’ve been thinking about this nonstop, should I send an email? I’m not sure if him giving me his card meant that they wanted me to reach out whenever.

I am getting the feeling you don’t know what is going on which is very baffling to me considering you are in every right to know.
Why all this speculation if you could straight up ask your agent or whoever responsible? Life/career altering decisions shouldn’t be left to be speculated or in the hands of others, especially when it’s about yourself.
 
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Skinnybubbly

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I am getting the feeling you don’t know what is going on which is very baffling to me considering you are in every right to know.
Why all this speculation if you could straight up ask your agent or whoever responsible? Life/career altering decisions shouldn’t be left to be speculated or in the hands of others, especially when it’s about yourself.
I feel so dumb for not questioning her more but I am no longer working with her. I guess in my mind I didn’t want to come across as difficult and fuck up any chance of getting placed and start working finally. In the end I got fucked anyway so I should’ve pressed her :( now I’m left with nothing, just a lot of questions lol lesson learned for sure
 

Whimsical

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I wasn’t sure where to post this. Hopefully this is appropriate. Before covid hit and ruined everything, my old mother agent sent me to an agency for a meeting. While I was there an agent gave me his card. My mother agent told me that we were going to take a different route but didn’t explain why and my stupid self didn’t question it because I trusted her judgement. This is one of the big agencies here in nyc and I really wanted to get signed. Everything seemed to go well so I was a bit confused as to why my mother agent dropped the topic on that agency even after telling me they wanted to send me away for a month. I parted ways with my mother agent a couple months ago so I am sans agent and for the past few days I’ve been thinking about this nonstop, should I send an email? I’m not sure if him giving me his card meant that they wanted me to reach out whenever.
I think at this point you have nothing to lose and should try contacting the guy. You'll be more sorry for not doing it in the long run. Good luck!
 

marieebo

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Girls! I did it! I had my casting today!
The girl that greeted me was the same that ‘discovered’ me and contacted me after I sent the Polaroids and stuff. She asked me what I expect from them, what would be my dream job and wrote everything down. Then she explained to me how this work: she said that initially they don’t sign anyone exclusively (as they should) but that they’re going to propose me for jobs I match the criteria with and we would sign a contract that only lasts for that period of time/per job. She told me that I can collaborate with other agencies or do some freelance If I want but I don’t have to sign to anyone exclusively ofc and have to email them the jobs that I get/photos that I take even if they aren’t linked to them. For now she asked me if I could send her some new Polaroids this week. She asked for my number and made me fill a form with my name, basic info, measurements and image rights to appear on the agency site. What do you girls think, if you have more experience? I am really happy so far and I hope I get to work :)
 
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eliza88

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Girls! I did it! I had my casting today!
The girl that greeted me was the same that ‘discovered’ me and contacted me after I sent the Polaroids and stuff. She asked me what I expect from them, what would be my dream job and wrote everything down. Then she explained to me how this work: she said that initially they don’t sign anyone exclusively (as they should) but that they’re going to propose me for jobs I match the criteria with and we would sign a contract that only lasts for that period of time/per job. She told me that I can collaborate with other agencies or do some freelance If I want but I don’t have to sign to anyone exclusively ofc and have to email them the jobs that I get/photos that I take even if they aren’t linked to them. For now she asked me if I could send her some new Polaroids this week. She asked for my number and made me fill a form with my name, basic info, measurements and image rights to appear on the agency site. What do you girls think, if you have more experience? I am really happy so far and I hope I get to work :)
Congrats ! It sounds like a wonderful progression of events.
I don’t think what you had was a casting today. It was just a meetup about how you and the agency would work together.
You could go to a couple more agencies and repeat this step to increase your chances of casting and job opportunities since they all non exclusive.
 

marieebo

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Congrats ! It sounds like a wonderful progression of events.
I don’t think what you had was a casting today. It was just a meetup about how you and the agency would work together.
What’s the difference if I can ask dear? Is it a good thing? Lol
I did expect more of a casting, meanwhile it was more of me and the agency girl discussing work and goals.
 

eliza88

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What’s the difference if I can ask dear? Is it a good thing? Lol
I did expect more of a casting, meanwhile it was more of me and the agency girl discussing work and goals.

What you just did was meet with a person working at an agency to talk about working together.
Basically they see you in person to make sure you don’t show up looking like a fat whale who photoshopped her pictures and so they could take “real polaroids/ digitals” of you in person. This is also for them to understand your background and experiences to better allocate castings and jobs to you.

Once they understand this and have your information ( photos , experience etc.) they can them give you castings when they have them.
Understanding information about you helps them more. For example, knowing you have no experience and is very keen to do this, they will probably start out by giving you a series of jobs that don’t pay at all (but you get the photos for portfolio ) or don’t pay well. They probably wouldn’t give this to someone with substantial experience.

A casting is when there’s an actual job and they need to screen models for the job. For example, a client would send an email saying they need a model with blonde hair with particular height weight requirements for a lingerie shoot, payment and shooting date. They would then look in their data for everyone that fits the description and ask those people if they could work on the shooting date.

Once they have the list of everyone who can shoot on the date, they will hold a casting which is when you go in to a studio or to clients office to let them see you in person or take pictures or do some poses.
Once that’s done, client will pick from the group that went in who they want to do the lingerie shoot.
Not always exactly like this, but most jobs are in such succession.
Casting content differs depending on the job. If it’s a catalog, you need to pose and take a couple of photos (maybe in their catalog clothing) just like the real job so they get a sense of your style of poses. If it’s a show, you just catwalk for them and introduce yourself. Sometimes a casting could be intimidating like 5 or 6 people judging you. Sometimes if it’s just a couple of photos, not intimidating at all.
Some jobs have flexible shooting dates, while others require just photo and video selection.

To add to the castings part: Do not feel sad or down when you fail to get a job after a casting. From my experience, out of 10 castings, you usually only get 3-4 jobs. Sometimes you get none at all. It all depends on the client.
 
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marieebo

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So I haven’t heard from my agency since like, three weeks? Is it normal? I’ve sended them new Polaroids, they asked me my measurements again and that’s it. What can I do to work more? Send them more professional photos? Or is it normal timing? They did told me at the casting that the could be times where I get no work and others when I get more so I have no idea. I need to work, tbh lol
 

eliza88

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So I haven’t heard from my agency since like, three weeks? Is it normal? I’ve sended them new Polaroids, they asked me my measurements again and that’s it. What can I do to work more? Send them more professional photos? Or is it normal timing? They did told me at the casting that the could be times where I get no work and others when I get more so I have no idea. I need to work, tbh lol
This is normal and I already mentioned what you went in for was not a casting. Sometimes you go for like half a year until they ring you up.
Sometimes they never ring you up again.
You can do nothing to work more. You (models) are really just one of the products at these agencies and they have many products.
I did already suggest you can go to multiple agencies to increase your chances.
 
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Marinamarilou

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So I haven’t heard from my agency since like, three weeks? Is it normal? I’ve sended them new Polaroids, they asked me my measurements again and that’s it. What can I do to work more? Send them more professional photos? Or is it normal timing? They did told me at the casting that the could be times where I get no work and others when I get more so I have no idea. I need to work, tbh lol
Yes, pretty normal. The only thing you can do to "get more work" is increase your chances by being your best marketable version:

Be skinny.

Also take good care of your skin and fitness, always be prepared because they might one day ring up and say they need you to be at a casting in an hour. Keep your look up to date (e.g. basic manicure, hair roots and cut, don't slack). There's not really anything however you could do actively to push it. One of my agencies just called me in March- I signed with them maybe 2-3 years ago and never heard of them ever since! I forgot I had them. Then there's other ones that call/mail every few months, every few weeks.
With an agency, all you can do is to be ready.
With freelancing you can or actually have to be proactive and approach potential customers yourself- by the way, has anyone got experience in that? I'd guess the big names wouldn't want freelance but there's also money in the commercial market with smaller brands, has anyone had success in finding work without an agency?
 
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marieebo

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Yes, pretty normal. The only thing you can do to "get more work" is increase your chances by being your best marketable version:

Be skinny.

Also take good care of your skin and fitness, always be prepared because they might one day ring up and say they need you to be at a casting in an hour. Keep your look up to date (e.g. basic manicure, hair roots and cut, don't slack). There's not really anything however you could do actively to push it. One of my agencies just called me in March- I signed with them maybe 2-3 years ago and never heard of them ever since! I forgot I had them. Then there's other ones that call/mail every few months, every few weeks.
With an agency, all you can do is to be ready.
With freelancing you can or actually have to be proactive and approach potential customers yourself- by the way, has anyone got experience in that? I'd guess the big names wouldn't want freelance but there's also money in the commercial market with smaller brands, has anyone had success in finding work without an agency?
I think having a good relationship with photographers helps a lot when you’re freelance. I am going to send some other Polaroids to other agency and might think about getting some other professional shoots like I was doing, to expand my portfolio
 
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eliza88

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Yes, pretty normal. The only thing you can do to "get more work" is increase your chances by being your best marketable version:

Be skinny.

Also take good care of your skin and fitness, always be prepared because they might one day ring up and say they need you to be at a casting in an hour. Keep your look up to date (e.g. basic manicure, hair roots and cut, don't slack). There's not really anything however you could do actively to push it. One of my agencies just called me in March- I signed with them maybe 2-3 years ago and never heard of them ever since! I forgot I had them. Then there's other ones that call/mail every few months, every few weeks.
With an agency, all you can do is to be ready.
With freelancing you can or actually have to be proactive and approach potential customers yourself- by the way, has anyone got experience in that? I'd guess the big names wouldn't want freelance but there's also money in the commercial market with smaller brands, has anyone had success in finding work without an agency?

Yea exactly. You can’t do anything other than making sure you always in top shape and ready to work.
The best really is signing non exclusive contracts that allow you to work with multiple agencies.
The thing is also to be realistic. Commercial modeling agencies offer way more work. At the end of the day, unless you with Elite, Ford or those big name agencies, we are all basically clumped as “commercial models”. Getting work as a commercial model is way higher because they want people of all types and their job variations are greater, ranging from tv commercials, catalogs, print, basically any everyday product you see needs a commercial model.
I would also suggest you market yourself online as such a model by creating necessary IG account.
This doesn’t mean needing a following. This just means putting everyday photos on there, not those posing ones. People ( agents/ clients) want to see everyday photos, not glam photo shoots of you in funky hair that you think looks high fashion. These literally do not help at all.
 
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marieebo

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Yea exactly. You can’t do anything other than making sure you always in top shape and ready to work.
The best really is signing non exclusive contracts that allow you to work with multiple agencies.
The thing is also to be realistic. Commercial modeling agencies offer way more work. At the end of the day, unless you with Elite, Ford or those big name agencies, we are all basically clumped as “commercial models”. Getting work as a commercial model is way higher because they want people of all types and their job variations are greater, ranging from tv commercials, catalogs, print, basically any everyday product you see needs a commercial model.
I would also suggest you market yourself online as such a model by creating necessary IG account.
This doesn’t mean needing a following. This just means putting everyday photos on there, not those posing ones. People ( agents/ clients) want to see everyday photos, not glam photo shoots of you in funky hair that you think looks high fashion. These literally do not help at all.
They also told me other than Polaroids, to send them everyday photos. Like the ones you can post on Instagram I guess? But is it professional to send them?