Celebrating 15 Years in Print
Though I am no expert in the modeling field, here's
what I generally suggest to people who are interested in it . . .
||Get some good color
photos taken of you, headshots and some full body shots, in
different kinds of outfits (casual, career, dressy). Do your
hair differently in the photos to show the variety of your look.
Get a photographer to do a session with you, but don't pay too
much. Check out his or her work/portfolio to see if you like
their work and are comfortable with them before scheduling an
actual photo shoot. Make sure you get all their prices ... like
what he or she is going to charge you to make prints after the
session... Your session could take 1.5 to 2 hours with a few
clothing and hairstyle changes. Take a look at their studio. Get
all the details and your agreements in writing.
||Once you have some
good photos, call your local boutiques for large women (or the
chain stores) and talk with the manager (or owner). Ask if they
do in-store fashion shows or events where they use models. Tell
them about yourself. See if she/he wants you to send a photo or
two to them for consideration, or if they'd like to set up an
appointment to meet you, have you try on their clothing, etc.
Models ought to get reimbursed in some way or other. It is not
always financial, depending on the store, designer, or the
situation. Think about what you're willing to do this for and
talk it over with the owner/manager. Sometimes models get
clothing in trade for their time and efforts and work. Sometimes
you take a job for the experience and exposure, and to add some
good photos to your portfolio. Sometimes models are paid in cash
(or part cash and part clothing).
Find out if the store does print advertising
-- they might need a model for their ads. If they are a
manufacturer of plus-size clothing, they might be in need of
"fit models" for various sizes of clothes.
||There are at least a
few books on the market which I think might be helpful to check
out. These two came out in 1997 I think -- check them out and
get more good information on the plus-size modeling industry.
Catherine Schuller is the author of The Ultimate Plus Size
Modeling Guide (she was a plus-size model with the Ford
Agency in NY for awhile) and Suzan Nanfeldt is the author of
Plus Size Style.
Women over a size 18 are still experiencing prejudice in the
modeling field. Ms. Schuller states in the article that
"the most requested size is 14, since the camera tends to
add visual weight, the smaller sizes generally get the most
work." In addition, Ms. Schuller also suggests that
"if you fall outside the standard size and height ranges,
you might find more work by booking directly with clients."
Keep in touch! Good luck and take care.
-Alice Ansfield, publ.