Thursday, December 31, 2009

The road to success is built by your own energy and understanding of your self

Happy New Year!

I would like to start this year with a thought of The Build.

So many girls write to me saying how they want to model and be successful, and it starts as a process, it starts with small steps, little jobs, even in their own small town, and the build starts.

You have to set up your own platform for success however, no matter your pursuits in life. Being realistic, and hoenst with your self is the best way to go after your goals.

And handling the doubt others give you, while keeping your spirit even the bad days is the livilhood. It takes a lot of work to maintain your pursuits, and the steps it takes to get to your own fufillment.

It is very difficault to keep a successful growing path, but the first thing that needs to be managed is your self esteem and your own understanding of what you want out of your pursuits.

Whether it is singing in a bar or holding your your own tour in your town, or you are striving to share your talents around the globe, it starts with a build. It is a process of tendering what you have to sell and being comfortable with the work it takes.

Ten Steps for creating a Model Beauty Shot and podcast recap

On my podcast radio show Model Talk today I talked about Beauty Modeling tips, and
working as a beauty model comes down to two things:

1. How well you can capture your assets on camera

2. How well you can market them

Your compcard should always include at least one beauty shot, which is an image of your face showcasing your assets, like a beauty ad or skincare ad, with a fresh, natural and pretty appeal.

Beauty is an area that a shorter girl can pursue because beauty has nothing to do with height or weight.

Beauty modeling actually does have something to do with the glow you give off in your face and your height is not an issue. So don't think it is.

To market yourself as a beauty model you first need the right photos. A few different variations are best to create. Here are ten steps to creating a beauty shot.

1. Look at examples of where you see beauty shots in magazines and print ad campaigns, (you could also study commercials for skincare, beauty products and hair care), notice the ads, notice the angle of the model's face.

2. Go to the mirror and actually practice posing your face, notice what happens to it when the light hits different parts of it while you move it slowly side to side. Study your face.

3. What are your facial assets? Before you get infront of the camera, be a prepared model and smart model, first try to imagine the photo you want to capture.

4. Seek out professional photographer's, only those who know the craft of photography, and who know what a beauty shot is. Approach them by calling their photo studio or by email setting up a meeting in a public place. When approaching the photogapher send a headshot of yourself and also an example by jpeg of the type of beauty shot you are going for.

4. At the meeting, before you set up a photo-shoot, bring examples of the type of shot your are going for. See if the photographer gets the beauty shot you are going for, and if so work out a time to shoot.

5. Ask about makeup for the shoot, or suggest a makeup artist you know. It is worth paying some bucks for a good makeup artist, or if you are having a hard time, get your foundation down right by visting a cosmetic counter at a department store or Sephora a few days before the shoot and buy the foundation and apply it at the shoot, then add some mascara, curl your lashes, and some natural gloss or chapstick or lipstick, nothing too bold for lips and eyes, natural is the best beauty shot. Again you will see this when you look at ads and editorials in magazines in step 1. Bring these examples with you to the makeup counter or share them with the makeup arist ahead of time.

6. remember NOT to over-do the makeup, it should be natural, it should be the true you, not you coated in makeup. Think airy, flowers, garden, ocean, fresh, not clogging pores with cakey makeup yuck!

7. Bring hair clips and hair ties to the shoot, you may want shots with your hair down or out of your face and totally pulled back. Bring hair spray as well and a brush or comb.

8. Bring clothing! a selection of sweaters, dresses, and be aware of the front of the garment, and notice what part of the garment will be captured during the close up. You could have a pretty dress but if the front of it, when cropped and zoomed in on, looks bad it could ruin the shot.

A beauty shot could have bare shoulders but doesn't have to! So bring clothing. If you want to do something more about body, you could also bring a scarf to wrap around your bare shoulders. Stick to the style of the body and skincare ads you see in women's magazines.

9. A full body shot that is shot at high resolution could be cropped and turned into a beauty shot. Sometimes it is hard for a new model to get a beauty shot she likes if she is anxious and not experienced, so while at the shoot also take some full body shots, and later you could crop the full body into a headshot and use this as a beauty shot as well.

10. I love natural light, out doors light, and keep in midn that lighting is so important when you do a beauty shot, make sure your photographer has skills with lighting. You want the light to capture the best of you. It is not going to look as pretty if you have to photoshop the photo all day to get it looking nice. Focus on getting professionalism. Slow down and let the shots you need become a process not a race. You want the shots to be lasting, professional, beautiful and sell you well.

Creating Beauty Model Photos -some examples here

Working from example can be best so I wanted to share some of my beauty shots. Depending on the atmosphere of the shot, the lighting, the angle, you can create many different types of beauty shots. Some beauty shots have hair in the face even, with a beachy wind blown look, some are airy and light, some straight on, some at an angle or profile, but always make sure your skin and eyes are focus points.

shot by Robert Caldarone

Shot by Michael McCabe

shot by Michael McCabe

Shot by Robert Caldarone

shot by Robert Milazzo

shot by Robert Caldarone

A beauty shot can be super close up, or can be arranged in many styles, shoulder up, waist up, straight on to the camera, side profile, at an angle. The main idea is to capture your assets, highlight your skin, eyes, and facial features. Your hair is also something to consider, if have nice, healthy hair you should consider including your hair in the shot as well. However make sure you produce at least a few shots with hair totally OUT of the face.

Get inspired before you shoot:
Look at skincare ads, hair ads, cosmetic ads, perfume ads, and magazine covers as well. Notice the models facial expressions. A calm, natural, at ease facial expression is best.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

the computer our way to watch, learn, create and be

Somethings on my mind.

I think it will be interesting if TV becomes something we watch more than often on computers. Our computers are something we look at alone. Right? Am I right to say most people use computers alone, by them selves, not with friends huddling around one computer screen?

The history of television involves "families" watching TV together, so will families watch the computer together?

Will family time, become alone time?

You can watch movies on your computer and HULU and other networks let you watch TV, I wonder about our world and the advertising changes as the computer becomes more and more our way to "watch, learn, create, and be."

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Gotta get a Coca-Cola Mini

Have you seen the Coca-Cola Mini commercials? They have an Alice in Wonderland vibe, Ironic that in 2010 Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland is going to be in theaters. (going to see that too)

Well these Coca-Cola Mini's are so cute and I will say, usually I do not finish a whole can of coke in one sitting. Ends up being wasted.

I think more drinks should come in mini, size don't you?

Mini pride!

Monday, December 28, 2009

I watch Inside The Actors Studio for inspiration be inspired watch Inside The Actors Studio on Bravo. I love learning the early stages of those who are successful today. I love this channel, and it is very fun to watch to learn more about the actors craft and the journey of those we see on the screen. The journey of a persons pursuit, no matter their pursuit, inspires me.

A week of beauty on my blog and beauty model marketing tips

I am going to do a week of beauty tips on my blog based on marketing yourself as a beauty model, from photos to beauty upkeep. Also I will share some beauty tips for the "whole body" based on my own on the job lived through experiences.

Also on my podcast Model Talk Radio on Weds I will have a segment based on Beauty Model Advice for your compcard, photo shoots and marketing yourself as a beauty model this week. On the show I will be sharing insight on where beauty models are used and how you can get in the door with a modeling agency with beauty modeling. Using what you do have to get ahead. You don't need to dwell on your lack of height if you focus on your assets which could be your eyes, lips, skin, profile, and the natural glow in your face. :)

Also I will be sharing some of the videos I have made on beauty for AOL's as well and others I have created on beauty tips as well. (view some below)


Beauty Model tip # 1. SKIN, FOUNDATION, POWDER.

To work as a beauty model you need to know your face. Know what you will be marketing.

What are your facial assets. Do you have nice eyes, nice skin, a nice profile, nice lips, your hair (hair modeling) also notice your ears and neck for jewelry modeling which can also be considered the beauty area.

However, before you get a beauty modeling job you should know how to do your makeup, enhance your features and keep your skin clear...So to prepare a beauty model compcard, your skin, foundation and powder are # 1 to get right, before you get in front of the lens.

Above all, your skin should be your main focus when it comes to working as a beauty model. Taking care of it is major, and keeping it blemish free. Yes, even in this Photoshop age you do not want to use Photoshop as a crutch to your pimple. If you do not moisturize, tone or cleanse your skin daily you SHOULD and make it part of your daily routine.

Moisturizer is important. If you are on a budget don't worry, you don't have to go broke finding one. I have used: Aveeno, Origins, St. Ives, LUSH, Clinique dramatically difference moisturing gel, Vichy, --all which won't kill your budget and they last a long time.

In the shower for clean and cleansing: During different ties I have used Neutrogena Deep Clean, St. Ives Apricot Cleanser, LUSH rub rub rub (on my face actually)often in the shower. I like a rougher facial salt sometimes on my face and and recently started using a tiny dab of Sugar Body Scrub by C.O. Bigelow on my face and body(nice!) Again don't use too many pro, products on your face all at once. Pick a moisturizer, pick a cleanser, toner, and zit zapper! :)

((Here is an interview on my radio show that I did with the marketing director at Origins, and you might enjoy this:

Ok, back to the face, if I feel a zip coming on I try to zap it very fast, right at the start with Clean & Clear Invisible blemish treatment for at least 20 minutes if I am home or I will put it on that night, over night, and then use a cleanser when I take it off.

Putting on your Foundation or Powder, First Steps:

When creating your compcard for beauty modeling, if there is not a makeup artist you will have to do it yourself, and actually it can be very basic. Your skin should look soft and natural.

To start: It is actually best to do your makeup NOT in the bathroom. The lighting can be bad, especially when you consider what the camera lens will see. I would buy a handheld large mirror and go to a window or go outside to do your makeup. Try it, you will notice a difference, you will quickly notice how the light is difference and you can get your foundation exsact.

I like to do under my eyes and then in a circle motion put on my foundation on my cheeks, chin, forehead, and then go down my nose. I try to keep the foundation light, let it dry, and then I will add a light powder. I like i.d bareMinerals. I wear Media Beige. Also get a foundation or powder that is SPF 15 if possible.
Here is a video where I share some "putting foundation lightly" tips:

Later, when it comes to attending beauty castings and modeling jobs,- you are usually asked to come without makeup or very little on. Especially, it is best NOT to cake on the makeup for your castings, even for beauty, and I would say some mascara and "light" everything else is best. Light eyeshadow, light blush, go light not heavy or bold, for the lipstick. Get used to NOT wearing a lot of makeup and instead enhancing and highlighting your assets without heavy makeup.

Also foundation and powder tip: If you are really struggling to get the right color of foundation then go to a Sephora, or a cosmetic counter at a department store, get your color tone right. It is worth paying the bucks to get a brand that works for you, but many drugstore brands are very good as well, Revlon, Almay, even Wet n Wild. Spend time to get the right foundation for your skin color. (I test foundation on my lower chin or neck, and make sure the color matches the color of your neck, it looks bad if your neck is one color and your face is another. Not good.)

To get good beauty shots you have to take care of your assets, your skin.

Coming up next are examples of beauty shots to get you inspired. So I would start noticing beauty editorials in magazines, and also ad campaigns involving skincare, haircare, cosmetics and perfume. And I will share my favorite ingredients in beauty items.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas Day to my Petite Modeling Tips readers! :)

Did Santa come? I hope so. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas Day & let this be a day to appreciate the things we should.

Christmas time always makes me think of the things that happened during the year and all I've done, and the things I still want to do and I start to get very anxious for the New Year.

I don't know about you but I am a bit nervous to write 2010, (I think it will be a good year, I've got this feeling) it just seems so weird to write, and time has flown by. 2002, doesn't feel that long ago but it was! 2005, 2006, the years just go by.

Strive, grow, prospere,


Thursday, December 17, 2009

A reason to Watch 20/20 on Friday: Secret Designs

I want to vomit just thinking about how scamful the modeling business as become since the Internet-age. Or more like, how full of scams "the pursuit of being a model" has become. I made many mistakes as a model, but I thankfully overcame them and my self esteem and confidence and belief in my self did not alter.

I wrote about my early modeling pursuits in my memoir Almost 5'4" honestly and open because I think being honest can inspire girls who are pursuing modeling to skip the scams. I also touch upon modeling scams, and Internet scams and amateur modeling mistakes in my graphic novel Model Life: The Journey of a Pint-Size Fashion Warrior.

I can honestly say I am lucky to have survived some of the bad experiences I had during my early modeling pursuits.

Some things to keep in mind when pursuing as a model.

1. Don't be desperate to succeed, so much that you lose your dignity.
2. Don't think ONE person can make you famous or successful.
3. Don't think it happens over night.
4. Beware of online casting calls, scams lerk.

This Friday, December 18th, on 20/20 at 9pm there is a special hour featuring the Rise and Fall of Anand Jon. ((I had a friend who did go to a casting at his studio in NYC, and she was called fat and dissed by him even though she has a fab body.))

Here is the link for more info on the segment:

I suggest watching this feature on ABC 20/20, to hear the sad story of girls falling for the wrong fashion opportunity.

Many of Anand's castings were on the Internet, emails written, also the encounters stemmed from Internet social site communication, Myspace, etc.

The Internet has caused a lot of hype and interest among curious girls who want to be models,-they go to Google and search, upload photos and flaunt, but the truth is They Are Setting Themselves Up For Scams. I believe the Internet is NOT a way that aspiring models can get ahead. It is best to NOT promote yourself on a model on it on random social sites.

It might seem easy, convenient, and normal to find castings, and promote yourself as a model on the web but it is amateur and typically only brings amateur opportunities. I think the Internet is the totally opposite and wrong way to promote your self as a model. Scams and people like Anand are found on the Internet, and you should focus on professionalism and if you want to really find professional opportunities as a model they do not happen on the Internet, it is better to get a comp card made, mail it aggressively to print modeling and talent agencies and aim higher.

Modeling is not showing off, being pretty, or the right size, a model is someone who is "modeling for something" and in a professional environment consistently, and to do it you should not lose your dignity or think you have to sleep with someone to get ahead or put your self in a situation where your worth is tested.

Watch 20/20 at 9pm this Friday, December 18th.

Don't be obsessed with fame and being in the spot light that you lose your dignity. If you are looking for a short-cut, you just might find a scam or even worse.

Also keep in mind
1. you don't need to have sex with someone, make out, or date someone to get ahead.
2. it is possible to get a modeling agency and gete professional modeling jobs but you DO have to work hard for it.
3. Make sure you are comfortable at a casting, on the job, etc, if you are not leave the atmosphere, there will be other opportunities out there.

holding a conversation is still an asset to me

I love technology, esp. my Logitech camera, and I use tech in ALL I DO, however knowing how to hold a conversation is still an asset to me.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Modeling the more your put in the more you get

A received a comment on my facebook page that read:
can you PLEEEEZ do a segment on "NOT everybody can be a MODEL" short or tall. I feel like every since Top Model came out, everybody thinks they are qualified. I mean Ok the biz has changed drastically since the 90's when there was a sharp line between the average and the MODEL but I feel like these days people think it's for everybody and the reality is it's NOT! I'm not the one to tell someone they can't be anything but I think this particular business is just not for every girl I don't care if she is 5'11 or 5 feet tall. Thanks! and I mean that with LOVE of course.

My reply comment back:
Hey girl, I will try. For now let me leave this. Just "feeling" you are qualified doesn't mean you can professionally model, sure you want to believe in yourself, but just being cute or modeling for your ego is not a good way to go about it. Amateur modeling is something that has taken a boom on the internet, but it is not taken seriously in the "real" business of booking work as a model, but even amateurs know they are amateurs (I mean they are not in professional magazines and just shooting for the fun of it, not the seriousness of it), you are not a professional model until you are booking consistent work modeling for brands and magazines and "for something". Top model is very misleading. It involves a heck of a lot of hands on work to be a model these days, and a lot of that “work” that it takes is not spoken about. The more an aspiring model works on her photos, and creates a marketable comp card the better. For print modeling there are no open calls, no discovery waiting in a line, you mail by postal mail your comp card. And you are not babied or told how to model, you are expected to know, but more print models work non-exclusive with agencies, not exclusive and they freelance with more than one agency. There is a big difference between being the hottest ass of the week on the web and really modeling for a product, brand, ad campaign. You don’t get those opportunities unless you are prepared, professional and know how to market what you do have. Being pretty, having comments on your social site doesn’t make you a model. Showing off is not modeling, being cute or a tease or not modeling, you are not a model until you have been booked, hired, to model for something and those professional opportunities are not typically found on the internet, it takes working with a modeling agencies or being an extremely good marketer.

Modeling these days, no matter your height, age, ethnicties or size comes down to two things. Being ambitous, and being realistic.

Being realistic is major! Being ambitious is equally major. The will to try is the biggest part about striving as a model, working as a model and booking work as a model. The more you put in, the more work you do and realize YOU DO have to do the work the better!

The fantasy and the reality are really strong lines. Modeling is not glamorous actually, a lot that it involves is work and being attractive is just a very itty bitty part of being a model.

In every trade these days there are the professionals and the amateurs, it is not just in modeling. The fight of the the professionals and the amateurs is ever lasting, but if you can focus on yourself you will find that you will grow and that the higher you aim, the more realistic and ambitious you are, the better!

Top go-to Model items of 2009

During this episode of Model Talk Isobella shares the best go-to- items for 2009 for models including beauty, retail, printing, and just helpful things to use to get the job done, that stood out this year.

Almost 5'4" is her memoir about her own journey as a shorter model, and also recently published graphic novel Model Life can be found on her website:

Tune into the top model-go-to-items of 2009 and see if some of them are already on your list or if you might consider getting some of these go-to-items for your own pursuits:

Weds. 16th, 2pm EST Live, or listen to the archive anytime

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

At Apple Store 5th Ave right now

At Apple Store 5th Ave, getting weird looks cause have flip flops on, just got pedicure, have shoe modeling casting at 1pm, wish me luck.

The photo is not me right now, it is from a photo for Swedish magazine called Bon. And the other was in Mac Life magazine a couple years ago.

At the Apple Store today there is an iPod section and if you do not have needs to fix, buy or need help with your iPod then I was told to leave. It is ok. I still love the Apple Store, but beware not all of the computers are for guests to use.

Jeff Bridges in Crazy Heart and Invictus, Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon

On my to do list, see Jeff Bridges in Crazy Heart, movies that show striving and doing the best you can inspire me. Stories inspire me. Crazy Heart is about the hard life of a broken down country singer.

Along with seeing Invictus, an Eastwood's film about Mandela with Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon, I am sure it will rise all emotions.

What inspires you?

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Almost 5'4" my modeling memoir in UK Feb 2010

My memoir Almost 5'4" is coming out in UK in Feb 2010 through The Friday Project an imprint of HarperCollins. Saw the book this weekend, if you live in the UK I hope you can add it to your reading to-do check list. Check out their edition cover above.

Friday, December 11, 2009

I want sexy shoes Santa! Michael Antonio lights it up!

Shoes are a great Christmas gift don't you think!

Michael Antonio Women's Nicholas Knee High Boot

Michael Antonio Women's Macey Ankle Boot

Michael Antonio Women's Otavia Boot

Ankle booties a great stocking stuffer

Surprise your friends or loved ones with booties as a stocking stuffer. I am sure your Christmas will be Merry and Bright! Here are 2 from Bakers that have charm and personality and are a bargain.

This CHLEO bootie showed up at my Model Life book party on the feet of some fabulous petite models:

At Bakers the Caden bootie, with the chain, is looking whoa!

Inspired by Malcolm Gladwell, the age of success does not have a stopwatch attached to it

I believe that success & creating doesn't have an age deadline, until I am unable to blink my eyes I will to be creating & thinking, doing and making. Becoming who you want to be, doing what you want to do doesn't have an age limit. Coco Chanel designed until the day she died. I am not obsessed with retirement, I don't ever want to retire. "DOING, keeps me alive and happy."

Last night before I passed out around 12:30am I was reading Malcolm Gladwell's book "What the Dog Saw", the cover is a bit boring, just text,-- but what is inside has become very important to me actually. I read his book to welcome my mind to the stories inspired by his own curiosity make me curious. I wake up inspired and energetic after reading his stories. I also start doing ALOT of Thinking. I always have my journal next to me to write down thoughts that come to me as I read. His writing style and the stories of the minor genuius are something your mind should experience, as you create your own perception.

Last night I read this story called "Late Bloomers", it is about the popular conception that a person who finds fame later in life, a late bloomer, has spent most of his/her life a failure, however Malcolm shares great examples by using painters, writers, and poets, to show how the age of being successful is not something with a stopwatch attached to it.

Not everyone is young and successful or an overnite success.

I thought it was interesting when Gladwell shared the story of two authors, Ben Fountain and Jonathan Safran Foer, who each had totally different experiences writing and were totally different ages when their books became best sellers. Also the comparison of Cezanne(older when got fame and after death) and Picasso (young when got fame) was very interesting to me as well.

Even if it takes longer to have that success, having a passion, working hard, being available for self discovery, sharing an interest or experience, and growing while pursuing it is something to value.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

putting that modeling compcard to use and getting ahead

Here are some tips no matter if your live in a big city or smaller town on how to get active with some modeling and put your compcard to use!

If you live in a small city, mail print modeling agencies or talent agencies your compcard or headshot by postal mail, already being prepared with marketing material can get you ahead.

If you are very new to the word model then get ready to get active and become a good researcher, research local colleges research their photo department or a fashion schools who might need a model, try to reach local ad agencies creative department who might need a model for small jobs locally, mail your photo and resume and modeling interests and assets to marketing companies. And most important if your live in a smaller city don't think there are NOT opportunities there. Modeling is everywhere these days so you've got to get on it and be ready to take advantage of what might be in your town. Also many large brands are base in smaller cities where rent is cheaper so research to find out what brands, companies are based right in your city. Approach aspiring brands with your compcard, their might be a craft fair, tradeshow, a street full of boutiques, stop in, stop by, pitch yourself, and drop off your compcard. Be sure to write your phone number or email on the card but stray from exposing any amatuer modeling website profile links, (i would skip those all together) and only show professionalism no matter the size of your town.

In a bigger city such as LA, NYC, Miami, or Chicago, I would mail by postal mail 50 compcards, by doing so you are bound to hear back from at least one agency. The more your market you the better, of course you need quality compcard and photos and a portfolio for castings but the more you try the more you get. These days there are many smaller size agencies that have been around for many, many, many years, and who are professional to work with but just smaller in size. In a competitive city you must work really hard and be prepared for it. The magazines, top brands, and many agencies are found in bigger cities but a lot more girls these days want to be models and are working as models. Let it be inspiration but be prepared to work hard. You could and shoul submit to agencies of all sizes, the top commercial print modeling agencies, but also the ones that are smaller in size. Getting some experience by working with a smaller boutique size agency is not a bad idea, it is a GREAT idea, get some real professional modeling experience modeling for products or in a magazine and use that experience to beef up your compcard and pitch other agencies you might want to work with. IT really is a marketing game for a shorter print model. You should be active as well pitching your self to aspiring brands and designers: Currently in Union Square and also Bryant Park there is a Holiday tradeshow craft fair and MANY designers are there, if you do not have any experience working with a product, go on, pitch yourself and compcard to some of these designers maybe? Get some experience it leads to more opportunities. And actually getting the experience often means getting off your ass and getting out there, and not relying on the internet to make you a model. That route is typically the road to amatuer land and doesn't lead to real modeling jobs.Showing an agency you can model does involve hands on work of yourself. So get out there! Aim to work with professionals!

Here is an episode on my radio show Model Talk on why you need a compcard and how working non-exclusive with an agency is how it usually is for print modeling, despite reality tv and what you might hear about getting an exclusive contract, it is not the end-all, and many,many,many print models work non-exclusively with print modeling agencies. In fact for print it is very normal.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

4 things that count as a model

Modeling is a build, it is a process. It is not an overnight success. The more your give the more you get, and also here are some things that count:

1. What are your assets? Do you know what is marketable about you? Could you picture yourself in an ad or editorial in a magazine? What type of product could you model realistically? What type of magazine editorial realistically? What would an agency would think of your photos you send them, and again what types of jobs come to mind that you could do when you look in the mirror and show your personality? If you do not know, then you should think about this stuff before you pursue modeling.

2. Being available, it can mean getting a modeling job or not. Agencies want to know you are available for castings and bookings. Agencies will give you castnigs a week before, a few days before or on the day of.

3. Being prepared. Having your compcard, portfolio, yes, even in this digital age counts. At a casting you MUST leave a compcard and if you don't have these tools you might as well not even show up to the casting. Saying "go to my website" doesn't play out with professional modeling jobs. Also to get a modeling agency interested in working with you, you should mail your compcard through the postal mail. Then if the agency is interested they will ask you to meet them, or send them more compcards, which they will market to their clients, the agency might also ask you to email jpegs of more photos. HOWEVER, it is suggested to mail by postal mail your compcard or photos for the very first submission. Don't be a lazy model and think electronic submissions are best, they are not. We might live in a digital-age, internet-age but mailing your compcard in postal mail is best still for professional agencies.

4. Keep the spirit. Just because an agency wants to work with you doesn't mean all is perfect and done. No way! Most shorter girls will NOT get an exclusive contract and many print modeling agencies freelance or work non-exclusive with their models... working non-exclusive with an agency is a good start for aspiring non-fashion models, but it doesn't not mean the phone will ring every 5 minutes- you must keep working to improve your photos, and portfolio, and strive to gain more opportunities to build your portfolio. Having 'someone to work with' doesn't mean all is done and set. It isn't just about "Who you are with" but also about "what you have done" --- It isn't just about 'the contract' it is about "the right thing for you" and if you ARE getting work as a model with that agency. Focus on getting professional experience as a model. The more experience modeling for 'something' you have the better, and the more you can get. Keeping your positive spirit, energy and drive is a major part of getting opportunities.

MODELING is ALOT OF work, it is not easy, there is no short-cut, and many girls give up. Be realistic and ambitious and get more of what you want.

***********AIM HIGHER ***********

Exclusive and Non-Exclusive modeling agreement Podcast segment: which is best for your modeling pursuits?

Isobella answers questions from Facebook friends on what non-exclusive and exclusive modeling means and the future of working with modeling agencies. She shares how to know what type of agency agreement is best for you.

She will give tips on how to make a modeling compcard and why a non-fashion model needs one. Isobella is the author of Almost 5'4"- her modeling memoir, and her graphic novel "Model Life: The Journey of a Pint-Size Fashion Warrior, both can be found on or in stores, or on Amazon. For more on Isobella visit her website:

Tune in here at 1PM EST live or listen to the archive anytime, along with other segments:

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

When I spent my Christmas gift money on model compcards

I remember being in college and I would use my Christmas gift money on buying new compcards come the New Year. I remember not spoiling myself with those cute shoes, and buying new compcards instead. Before the cheaper opportunities you can find at places like there was basically one option, going to a printing company office and paying $100- $150 for 100 cards. You started with a place where headshots were also printed.

There wasn't the option to buy only 30 or 50 cards. It was 100, that's it! So you had to make sure you were printing something you wouldn't later regret spending your Christmas money on. At the start of my pursuits I made many compcards, many before I even started working with agencies. I was testing out what card would work, and also understanding my look as a model and how to promote myself and what I did have to offer print modeling. Trial and error was a big part of it. I think you grow from learning from mistakes and trial and error with printing compcards was a big part of knowing how I could fit into this modeling business, while being so darn short.

Usually around this time of year was when I would try to produce something amazing. Something that could be marketed and used until the summer. I would print the cards adn then spend the following weeks mailing and research agencies I could freelance with, and trying to get opportunities. Approaching better -more professional photographers, working on creating better images, so that I could again produce a new compcard and try again. It was a lot of trial and error and growth during those years.

But after I ended up working with a photographer which lead to getting my first tearsheet and after submitting my compcard inventively to photo-editors at magazines and trying to approaching aspiring brands, I got some credit, some proof I COULD model well. That I was a good model, and gave the agencies I would later end up working with the belief that I could, despite my height.

When making a compcard it is a good idea to be selective over the photos you put on your compcard and it is better to show two great images that are marketable, than a handful of just ok ones, to fill up the back of the card with 4 photos. It is better to show less-if it is good quality- than show a bunch of not so good images. You might waste your money.

Also I think it takes a creative mind, an energetic personality, and up beat approach to get ahead as a model. Showing up, being pretty, skinny, whatever, is not enough.

Work = rewards for the hustling model

The image in the media of what it takes to model and what IS a model is often wrong.

Being discovered is over. It can be hard to tell the difference to new aspiring model eyes between the scams and the professional, the internet age or having a website doesn't make it any easier. Working as a model, modeling for brands, product, with an agency takes work.

An open call is not something a shorter girl attends, and for print it is all about the postal mail submissions, but when it comes to WHAT to submit, WHERE to submit, and the work that goes into getting your marketing material together (compcard, or a headshot) it could be months before you even mail a modeling agency, then another few months before you hear back, and then you could end up feeling rejected, not good enough, and like you wasted your time.

But hang in there!

Modeling, no matter what you hear elsewhere is WORK, a lot of it. Especially for a girl who is not fashion height and especially in this present day. A very small amount of girls could call themselves models ten years ago, but today modeling is more than fashion, and the commercial print modeling world offers opportunities for all sizes, but it is WORK.

To get the opportunity I believe it takes ALOT of self work, managing your own photography, knowing what you need photographed, making a marketable compcard, mailing it to the right agencies, and it take a lot of time, effort, and study of ones self.

Ten years ago you might not have had to be a marketer, but today a model must be one.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Signed copies of Model Life

There are 5 signed copies of my graphic novel "Model Life" at Barnes & Noble in Union Square (NYC), graphic novel section, you will love Jazmin Ruotolo's illustrations inside! P.s: Union Square shows up in the book as well! Also signed 2 in-store copies of Model Life at the Tribeca store this weekend, if you like signed books. :)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Victory and Victoria from Bakers Shoes

Aren't these cute!

This is Victory:
This hot sequin shoe would be perfect for a holiday party or spicing up some skinny jeans.

And I am diggin the color tan or camel for shoes (Bakers calls this color ice), so I am liking these suede pumps.

The shoe is called Victory.

To see something in the distance coming closer

I think setting goals is one the most important things to do in your life. Having a goal, allows your mind to open. To see something in the distance coming closer is an amazing thing to experience but you have to make your self available for your own success, and take that chance on yourself.

Faith in your goal and focus, they are the daily medicine.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

no one can cut you down to size

When you believe in yourself, no one can cut you down to size, no matter your height.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Victoria's Secret Runway show comments

I am happy to see that the girls are not bone thin on Tonight’s Victoria’s Secret Runway show, and that they have some thigh action going on.

I understand the image factor and that a customer likes the fantasy but I don't buy it personally. I understand it for marketing but I think advertising can often affect a girl self esteem, and suddenly she forgets her mind, and only thinks her cleavage and ass matters in this world. Sure, I am blessed with thin thighs and years of being a competitive track runner has kept me thin for many years, but I am also very active, high energy and try to eat well and proportionate to my size, but I like compliments on something I did, something I created, did, with my mind, more than on my ass typically. Yes I have gotten modeling jobs based on my curves and bootie, and I try to keep in shape to my proportions but I am not defined by my ass.

I also noticed and liked how the girls on the Victoria’s Secret Runway Show tonight are not too busty, not flat as a board, but not overly busty, not all implanted. When it comes to bust size, for future sales I think all intimates collections should design for petite and plus sizes girls. This area gets ignored often.

Heidi looked hot! Hot mamma, and the balloon angel wings are creative! :) But didn't like all the crotch camera angles...ummm.. :(

Maybe for men it is different; would they would rather see David Beckham in an ad in underwear than a man with a belly? Would it matter?

capture the marketing you as a Model podcast 12/2/2009 at 11:00 AM

Capture the marketing you as a Model podcast 12/2/2009 at 11:00 AM

Hold the date, and save the link to tune in here. 12/2/2009 11:00 AM

not settling for the so-called model life

Today on Bella Petite Radio I spoke about how the goal of aspiring models should be to get infront of the right agents, the right brands, and especially the right professional photographer.

I have had my own share of struggles and write this blog to advocate from what I have first-hand learned and experienced, and my memoir Almost 5'4" and graphic novel Model Life also are a form of sharing insight on overcoming the odds.

Having a profile page on a social site, even on a so-called Model Site, is not professional and will not help you appear professional. It is just a show-off tool, not something respected agents and professionals use.

I do not use my website to market myself as a model. I use it because I am an author and for my brand, for inspiring my readers and those who want to model.

Most of my readers are new to modeling and the best thing I can advise is NOT to use the Internet to promote yourself as a model. To be professional, to get a compcard, headshot, to mail to an agency and to strive for more, to aim higher than the "show off" factor. To really model, to really call yourself one you have to "model" something. A product. A brand, for something.

Unless the editorial in the magazine is about YOU, you should be focusing on modeling "products" and really modeling if you want to.

A website alone will not help your modeling pursuits, most agents still use compcards, or their own website to feature their models, and unless the photos are only professionalthe do-it-yourself method and only using your website, can lead you stuck.... If you really want to model, think about how you can use what you do have to modeling something, and create a compcard that is marketable towards brands and agents, which then leads to modeling jobs.

I wrote about the modeling opportunities I have found through the Internet, and a few were helpful, but mainly looking for work through the Internet castings can be a waste, for me, the REAL quality modeling jobs did not come from the Internet at all.
They come from my agent, or by myself approaching brands and working with photographers who are professional and work with clients and brands and magazines.

They came when I left the Internet behind and focused on marketing my assets to agents and brands. I've been in ad campaigns and product ads by marketing myself with a compcard, and headshot, to the right agents, or approaching the brands when I did have experience and over time built my own portfolio. It is not an over night thing, it comes from pure work, pure effort, pure trying. Knowing what is marketable about yourself and capturing that in photography you use to market yourself. If you are trying to model without a compcard you will not be going far, you need these tools, it is a MUST to work with agents and book quality work.


full day, an interview, writing, pr, and engagement

I will have a full day of pr mailings to newspapers and mags I want my graphic novel "Model Life" to be featured in, and an interview on The Bella Petite Hour on at 1:00pm EST if you are around to tune in, and will be preparing for her other book pitches, writing a screenplay, and mailing my engagement announcement cards, between now and Christmas is madness, I am sure you can relate!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Bella Petite Interview and Model Talk, too short for what?

Tomorrow December 1st I will be speaking on's radio show about modeling as a shorter girl and my journey, sharing tips and advice and insight on self promotion and marketing as well.


1:30 pm EST

10:30 am PST

Tune in by clicking this link to the Bella Petite Hour radio show:

And, come up this week, on Weds. 12/2/2009 at 11:00 AM - I will be sharing moments from my own modeling pursuits when height didn't matter to model. And I will be suggesting ways to create a compcard that will capture and show off the marketable you, that has nothing to do with your height.

Hold the date, and save the link to tune in here. 12/2/2009 1:00 PM

Sunday, November 29, 2009

can you live without your cell phone for 7 hours

won't be checking my email for 7 hours tomorrow while on the train (no charger for phone and it is on last bar), it will be a test to see if it can be done without a spaz attack. I will be writing though, and preparing new projects and my journal should be very full when I arrive back in NYC tomorrow. No calls, no email check, oh my!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

A chat with on modeling, books and striving

Enjoy this fab interview with Jennifer of I talk about the journey of striving as a model and how being indie and creating your own is possible, along with sharing insight into my memoir Almost 5'4" and my graphic novel Model Life, which I also hope you enjoy!

Or your can find the interivew on or Youtube.

Isobella Bella Petite interview December 1st

On December 1st I will be on Ann Lauren's BellaPetite hour radio show. is a magazine and home for the real petite, (5'5" and under).

Bella Petite's motto is “never underestimate yourself."

I'll be talking on the show about just this, and how aspiring models can use what they DO have to get ahead, no matter their height and how modeling is more than height and inches if you know how to market what you've got.

Tune in Tuesday here:

Friday, November 27, 2009 asks me about modeling and books and my biz here's Katherine Chen asks me about modeling and books in this interview, asking "In a nutshell, what advice would you give to models who think they are “too short” to make it in the fashion industry? " I answer that and other topics among models and my books, follow the link. Aim high!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

On the Morning Media Menu podcast here

On Weds morning I did an interview with Media Bistro, the media outlet that first broke my story of writing my first book, my memoir Almost 5'4" at the Apple store while striving as a model, I also talk about Model Life my graphic novel, and the how-to-modeling book I am preparing currently which is based on this blog and my own radio show podcast where I gives tips and insight on being a model daily.

Here is a link to insight on FishbowlNY to the podcast interview on self promotion and my journey as a writer and model:

And this is insight on Galleycat that shares insight from the interview on how to use Google to grow your brand as well, I hope it could be helpful for any business, person, brand:

No matter your pursuit, your own will matters SO much, your own positive attitude and what you put in.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Who wears the clothes? Fashion's Reality Check WWD

This morning I wanted to clench my fist and scream YES, YES, YES! While reading an article by Nick Axelrod and Venessa Lau, in WWD, called Who Wears the Clothes?
At last! An article about how fashion needs to “give up the fantasy and grow up into reality.” At last! I never thought, growing up in Syracuse, NY, that I would know who Oscar de la Renta was or Roberto Cavalli or Donna Karen or Michael Kors, Marc Jacobs, and many others who are in the magazines and newspapers each day. Growing up I only knew DEB, JC Penny. H&M didn’t even come into my hometown until I was in college.

And yet you don’t have to be born with it, for “it” to creep up on you. As I have reached my adulthood “fashion” has seeped into my veins and as Advertising boosts to all media formats, I realized the amount of knowledge I have gained on fashion, the names, people, the history, and I didn't go to fashion school. I especially notice it when I pack my bag for Thanksgiving in Syracuse, NY and purposely try to bring items that are NOT as fashionable. I don't even own a black turtle neck anymore!

Going home always reminds me of how I was fine and dandy not even knowing these labels growing up. I appreciate fashion as an art, a craft, but because I didn't have it when I was younger, and found passions (running, art, writing) beyond it, I don’t obsess or cry if I don’t have this seasons shit. Also my mother wasn't a fashion freak, so perhaps that is why I do enjoy fashion, fashion magazines, clothing, shoes, but I know these items are items, not something that should define a person.

Yet I will admit, when my fiancĂ©e presented me with my first pair of Prada sandals this past summer, I couldn’t believe it. OMG! OMG! OMG! And jumping into his arms.

Despite the excitement, the obsession of fashion in our nation has made women emotional upset and mad. The fantasy has become too much of a so-called reality in the minds of designers. They have this unrealistic mindset of what is real and sellable.

But this is not new news to me, I have always felt this, fashion should be what the word suggests, something wearable. Something to cover our naked bodies. Something that makes us feel attractive, something that WE like, and that it should be designed for PEOPLE, for the customer, NOT just an ego or fantasy. It doesn’t take a Brain Surgeon, to figure this out. Why does designing for American women have this “boring sound” to it, like the words average, normal, and “for all sizes” sting the sewing machines. The reason is because the image of the clothing, the ad, the appeal is bitchy, rude, FU! And with it comes this thing we as people have created called Prestige. The "I am better than you because I am wearing this shit persona."

And also, since I mainly advocate on modeling currently let's go there too: the model in the ad today, is not related to the customer. (Grab all those fashion magazines and take a look, it might be pretty, well crafted, pretty makeup, styling, but does it make you want to buy the clothing, or just frame the image?)

I don’t think the customer would mind if the girl modeling the clothing, shoes, jewelry, were someone she could better relate to?

Models were not always 6 feet tall. Look at the 60’s, 50’s. The models were more realistic to the customer. Why this changed is a mistake in my mind.

I liked the chart in the article that showed an illustration of the heights of the customers of designers these days. Yet it isn’t like women’s bodies have changed THAT much, I mean why were designers always designing for the “actual bodies” of the customers always? Let’s talk about Queens and Princesses, they first led fashion and not all of them were itty bitty small…or tall.

I am not tall, I am petite, and although I am fit and have a trim body it is HELL sometimes shopping. Pants too long, and going to the tailor time and time again is a true pain in the ass, most of the time. I am always hunting for “SHORT” sized pants. Usually they are gone.

Basically I think the article was important in not just Fashion Terms but for how the change and realistic mindset of designers will begin to affect the rest of the retail industry and the psychology of it’s customers. Let’s just simply start with Height.

The Average American Women is:
5’3” or 5’4”

That alone should inspire some changes.

Let’s just face the facts. The customer can handle seeing how the garment would look on someone her size.

So not only will designers sell more, but also the customer will feel welcome no matter her height or size.

Thank you for this article, it is long past due! :)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Model Life feature in the NYDailyNews!

Yay, I wanted to share a feature in the New York Daily News on my graphic novel "Model Life: The Journey of a Pint-Sized Fashion Warrior," and my Illustrator Jazmin Ruotolo, and my self. I hope you enjoy it and check out Model Life :)

Saturday, November 21, 2009

my twitter quote

In this self-made world, you have to be picky about how you handle your options, or create a better option 4 urself.

Models that jump or hang.

When I lived near Water Street I was shocked when model Ruslana Korshunova, 20, jumped to her death. Even recently, when I go to FED Ex on Water Street I feel slight chills thinking about it. Recently I read that South Korean Supermodel Daul Kim hung herself.

It makes me wonder and sad that if under the makeup and clothing the girls do not have love for themselves? To model, I think that it takes confidence and one has to have very,very thick skin. This sad news makes my head tilt down as I type this, these girls are walking the catwalk but are they not mentored? Do they not feel they can share things with their agents, especially if they are depressed? The highs and lows of working in a fast pace industry can take a toll on the mind and emotions. What do you think about this?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Short Model Support podcast radio show on self promotion

At 9pm EST 11/18/09, Isobella shares a recap of ANTM cycle 13 and shares a recap from her Model Life book party on her podcast radio show, along with tips for self promotion and marketing yourself as a model. And how visiting the magazine section in a bookstore can help you be the model in the magazine.

Tune in live at 9pm, or listen to the archive anytime you'd like:

The Models of the Model Life book party photo-shoot

Most book parties allow the author to mingle with their readers, for the Model Life book party it was an interactive experience where guests were able to watch live petite models model shoes from Bakers. It was an amazing time, and here are some of my favorite shots of the girls from the photo-shoot shot by Robert Milazzo at MercBar in SoHo.

Guest also enjoyed sampling some of my favorite "petite" fashion and cosmetic brands. We had the participation of Sweet Petite's, Lula Lu Lingerie, LUSH, Michael Antonio shoes as well, as Styli-Style cosmetics!






Model Life shoe modeling photo-shoot winner is...


She modeled the shoes in a great way that represented what a shoe ad looks like, (I would have liked to see a bit more of her personality), see below for a couple of my favorite shots of her, she has won a $75Gift Certificate from Sweet Petite Apparel.

Airbrush lingerie experience, it is a favorite!

Yesterday I did some airbrush body art. Typically I stray away from body art, it can look often untasteful and unless it has an advertising feel, or editorial beauty type feel it can "just be a cool shot" but it might not help your pursuits as a model, unless very WELL done.

Yesterday it was VERY well done. The concept was to paint lingerie on me to look as real as possible. A piece of beautiful lace was put against my backside, then the airbrush was sprayed against it. What was left was a beautiful, real looking pair of panties, it was really impressive. I had a gold base on my legs and I put on a pair of black fishnets and the artist then airbrushed black against the fishnet. Then the fishnets came off and omg, it was so beautiful. And real looking.

A line of burgundy sequins made the top of the thigh highs and more lace was airbrushed on to the top of them to give that real appeal.

I hope to share some pics soon.

Monday, November 16, 2009