So you already have in your head that America's Next Top Model is modeling, but it is a very unrealistic viewpoint. But your introduction to modeling is already wrong.
I suggest an honest approach to the industry. There is modeling for everyone. Models of all heights and size model, but it is about how you market yourself and your perception of what modeling is, is what will get you ahead.
It's about approaching the business the right way.
You might think you walk into an open call or you stop by the agency, or that everything is handed to you or you become discovered but you are wrong, this is a false impression.
You need to build yourself as a MODEL, build yourself with the marketing tools you need to really get ahead.
1. The first thing to do, is to create your marketing tools. Don't think someone else is going to MAKE you a model. You NEED to make your compcard first, before you think of modeling agencies, before you even THINK of them, you need to understand what modeling is, and the type of modeling that is good for you, you need to look at magazines and editorials and catalogs, ad campaigns. Get an idea what a model is, and not just FASHION, you don't have to hold a frickin snake or know how to walk to be a model. Fashion is NOT everthing, but it DOES take a marketing mentality to be a model. And you need to see how you can realistically market yourself.
Or how you could just send a simply photo of yourself, your mom could take it on her digital, and send it in, and if the agency is interested they might request you work with a certain test photographer.
You need to think about what you can offer the industry in a realistic way. And chase that!
So if you do not have the means to contact a legit photographers yourself and find legit ones who can help you get what you need, then you should send a simply shot of yourself to some agencies, and honestly a plain headshot is the best shot you have. And a shot with energy and smile. If you only have $100 get a headshot. Then submit your compcard, headshot out in massive ways,submit it to every agency. And in NYC there are plenty of legit commercial print modeling agencies. For models of all types.
2. Real photographers do not find talent on the internet, so it might seem easy to download your photo and become a model, real modeling agencies do not find talent on the internet, you are not going to be discovered on the internet. The Internet is a false hope. Someone who is a serious photographer is not finding models on the internet.
3. Your not a model until you get paid on a real legit modeling job. You can't play model for a day in some guys basement or living room.
If you mail your cards and photos, out to every agency by the end of 30 days you will have a call back!
If you can't handle the work of being a model, submitting your photos, and NOT taking the easy way out.