Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Photographer to Model Tips: How to Get Paid Gigs within the Freelance World.

I'll be clear, bluntly honest, and may repeat myself to emphasize certain things I am about to mention. Plus I may piss you off!

I'm a freelance photographer for about 4 years now. I've paid models for about 1-2 years to model for me to build a solid collection of photographs to resale in any way I see fit, but right now I primarily use them as poster sales. The modeling types that I have a chance to sell must be of female models that are nearly naked, in tiny bikinis, lingerie, implied nudes or actual nudes. If you want to get paid, and work in the freelance modeling world... one or all of those types of modeling may be the ONLY way you can earn any money from freelance photographers. I know most models want to get paid and be clothed as much as humanly possible, this will not happen unless it is outside of the freelance world where you are working with modeling/talent agencies.

Body Image and Looks

The looks are vastly important... soo important that without "a look" that people want to see, you will NOT be hired or rarely hired. A look that is honestly generally hired are somewhat athletic to very athletic female models. Male models, even athletic will be rarely hired in the freelance world. Of course you can increase your chances in bigger cities around the world/county you are reside in, but generally in most areas (outside of those cities) you will not be hired for paid work. I'll give you a few samples of what is generally paid based on looks alone...

Now you have solid samples of looks that I personally have hired for.

I know these above looks are the likely looks that are generally paid in the freelance world and not numbers from porn & fetishes. And when I say "porn" I mean anything not "artistic nudes" and further... research it further if you still don't get it.

Being good looking or "having the look" isn't the only requirement, but of course it is a very big part of to being paid as a model in the freelance world. There are many other aspects which are mentioned in a 4 part series of articles here.

But to add to that just keep a quick note, skills are huge part of actually being hired over and over, and over again... so keep that in mind. If you do lack it and you simply sold JUST your looks, most photographers will not be happy to have you return again on a paid basis at least. I personally no longer hire unskilled good looking models due to the fact I know I should be paying for the look AND skills of a model, not just looks.

Be sure to keep in shape, maintain your LOOK that you have convinced photographers to hire you in the past, heck improve on them even! 

Having tattoos and not having any tattoos are a HUGE difference from getting some jobs to a lot more jobs. It's just how it is... Especially in the agency modeling world. Just be sure to think about this before getting a tattoo. Heck even if you have tattoos please be sure it is an appealing tattoo, a bunch of words on your skin is not appealing in any form no matter what they say, it may mean a ton to you but it will cost you a whole lot of jobs in most cases. You may be able at best is be a niche model in the alternative modeling world, but again keep in mind WORD tattoos are NOT APPEALING to anyone but you and your personal loved ones who know what it means to you... Hence why professional (freelance) photographers will ask you to remove any jewelry, especially wedding/engagement bands! Why you may ask? Because the photo is NOT about you personally it is about the fantasy of your look or/and products you are showcasing, again not about your husband or boyfriend when people look at your photos.

Other Skills
Have very strong communication, reading, and listening skills. You'd need to READ a lot of contracts which may or may not take all of your rights away when being hired for paid gigs. If you don't then when your photos are being used in areas you do not want like porn or offensive advertising campaigns and you already signed away all your rights without restrictions then you have no say in how they are used after you signed those rights away.

Disagree or Agree to the above content? Make comments here with questions, comments, concerns, etc. or send them to my email at and I'll respond to them as soon as possible. Thank You and much appreciated!

Like this article? Did you learn anything, want more? Check out related articles in the following blog series articles... Photographer to Model Tips and Models and Photographers Tips

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