Here's an update ever since then...
First I've decided to look into talking to college I'm already attending and possibly contacting the drama club advisor and/or instructors. I got into contact with the drama club advisor which was as well the acting classes instructor, so he introduced me to his classmates very well and I got a one response (poor, but it's better than no response as I used to get at that time). This response was the aspiring actor Tim, which dramatically helped me get some nice starter portfolio photos added to my model photography portfolio and has increased my response levels on Model Mayhem because I didn't have any good quality portfolio photos to show on MM.
So, if you were in my situation check the college you're attending and get into contact with drama/acting class instructors and/or drama club advisors or/and club presidents. It has worked out very well for me and I'm sure it should work out for you. But if that doesn't work for you or nothing at all I highly recommend buying a wireless shutter trigger because after I did Tim's Headshots and did myself a self-portrait with the same quality level I honestly couldn't tell the difference if it was shot on a tripod or not. Last resorts to get a portfolio started is getting some good quality self-portraits shot.
After being on Model Mayhem since late May I've met maybe about 10-15 models, but only shot about 4. So, don't hate yourself just expect that many (especially female) new models are going to not be serious into modeling as you're into model photography.
Being on MM for about 2 months, I've exhausted my TF models pool, which is pretty big pool such as 50mile radius from my home location (Hazleton, PA), so living in a very big city will help you dramatically to having a much bigger pool of models. I've had about MM 15% response (via MM messages) and over 5% I've shot from the amount of models I've messaged. It's not much but I require all models to communicate via cell phone/text and many don't want to communicate within that method, as well many other reasons such as not so serious models, immature/unprofessional models, or models who think I'm too serious into photography or too organized. This is not a rant I understand some people can't work together for whatever reasons, we all move on, of course many models (most) won't tell you in plain English and loud and clear that they lost or not interested. It is very rare to see a model on MM being professional, mature and has good communication skills, so when you see it respect it I know I respect those models that are professional, mature and has good communication skills.
So those who've read this update I hope you guys have learned something from my experiences but now I officially have experienced with many models from MM and currently I have 4-5 shoots this week alone, this month maybe 6-8 shoots in total, and more coming because I have 10 different pre-production meetings with models this week (in 1day of course). But I'm loving it, just of course the bad will always be there and it will always sting keep that in mind. Another thing is expect cancelations or re-scheduling, which are understandable, just those photographers reading this expect it and plan backup models to call on for you won't lose a planned day of shooting.
Here's some simple tips I've learned from PhotographerandModel.com podcasts and my experience working for the past two months when working with models...
- Communication is Key!
- PITCH! - When messaging models have a set and well developed "pitch" message with creative concepts with specific details on everything you have in mind, especially with wardrobe if possible. The more details you have (relevant information) the better for serious (professional/mature) models. This should increase your response from the models. But this would also depend on your portfolio so ensure you have properly selected the photos displayed in your portfolio.
- and be organized!
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