A girl on Myspace recently asked me about Why her agency isn't getting in touch with her... This was my inspirational and honest reply:
Well....not to be brash but Why would they want to?
Sometimes I don't hear from my agents for weeks, sometimes I hear from all of them in the same week. And the big question isn't Why aren't they promoting me....but instead. " what can you do to get them to promote you?"
Maybe it is you,…not them. Maybe your photos need to be worked on. Maybe they need to see that you have been putting some effort into yourself.
When I am not hearing from agents I do a few things:
1. I email or call them or send them in the mail a card or a letter saying what I have been up to, -it helps if you HAVE been doing something. ( see # 3)
2. I try to update my portfolio, my photos, and I plan and conceptualize a photo shoot for myself. It helps that I have some good photographers handy
3. I try to promote myself, I try to contact brands and magazines, could be local or small and try to get myself some modeling credits or a modeling tear sheet
4. Most of the time if you have a modeling tear sheet, that shows you have worked, and this needs to be in print, in a newspaper or magazines, or in promo material for a brand.- then usually the agency will be more intrigued than you just coming in and showing them your pics and relying on them.
5. Maybe even ask the agency…what do you think I could improve on?
Say “ I am planning a photo shoot to improve my images and I just wanted your opinion on the photos you could use that would be best for you to market me.” I do this often, especially since I have a few agencies and each want different things. I give each different compcards too. ( And yes I pocket this, and it is normal, it is like printing a headshot,…you think ALL casting directors print the headshots for their talent? NOPE!- same thing with modeling cards…you might need to make a few before you get one that works for you. And even so I change my compcard about every 3- 4 months. And by then I am out of cards anyway from all my mailings, castings, and submissions.
6. Once you know what you need to get in terms of photos: Try to meet some quality photographers and by this I mean: Notice photographers shoots for editorials in local magazines or newspapers. Or even call the newspapers and local magazines, ad agencies, and ask who they suggest.
7. Pitch the photographer some of your ideas…don’t be deceived thinking it has to be sexy…usually a simple show of you looking like a catalog or a commercial ad for a handbag company or something will benefit both the photographer and you.- Work with professionals. Not photographers who shoot for a hobby. (you don’t have to be a modeling tease if you don’t want to be.) It might sound corny but go to the phone book, look up photograpy... or google your town + photography. Try to find people who really do create great photos and who really work with brands or magazines. And email or call them and stress your personality, ideas, and be a savvy model with a plan!
( I pitch photographers all the time ideas I have for photo shoots, magazine submissions, and editorial ideas.)
If you want to model, then think about the brands, product you want to model, think about: What photos do I need for this type of modeling, and also how can I go about getting in touch with the brands and magazines and agencies I need to get in touch with.
It takes research and a lot of work.
I submit my photos to brands, magazines, and agencies all the time. I don’t wait for the phone to ring. I freelance with many agencies, and I work with many brands because my photos are very diverse. I can be a hair model, and a lingerie model. I can portray a teenager and I can also be a young corporate professional for a commercial or ad campaign. So each one of these need different photos…it looks like you have some thing to plan and prepare for now!
So ask questions, be busy, and don’t always blame the “other guy” look at yourself and think “what am I doing for my own pursuits?” and “ what am I doing to get this agent more excited about me?” And in the mean time….promote yourself to magazines, brands, and don’t wait.. …I have agencies, I have worked with big brands but I still promote myself as a model every day and never let one person make all my dreams and goals come true…..be smart about your pursuits, be ambitious, and soon you will be learning how to promote, manage and market yourself.
And the agent will be impressed and you might even book some work on the days they aren’t calling. Looks like you have a lot of things to do…so go get em!