Modeling Portfolios | Steps to follow
Getting a Portfolio is your first step toward your career as a model. It starts with choosing a good photographer who can be entrusted with the task.
If you have chosen to go ahead with Munish, half your battle is won, well almost.
On a serious note, its a team work and everyone plays a crucial role in ensuring that the portfolio turns out to be the way you want it to be.
Its easier to work with Munish as he involves everyone in the process and that makes the task all the more smooth. A lot of people are under the impression that once you choose a good Photographer, your job is over. It's not like that. You know yourself best. You have hired a photographer to bring out the best in you and this is only possible if you are as involved as he or she is.
Evaluate yourself honestly and set your goals.
We are all different and fall in different categories. Make an honest evaluation of yourself. You are good-looking, beautiful and attractive? Maybe none of these but still put across yourself very confidently and have something that appeals to a larger audience.
You need to understand your weaknesses as well as strengths. Do not try to do something which does not flow very naturally with you, unless you have groomed and molded yourself to suit that way.
Some people are not very photogenic but still, they have that charisma on stage or on Ramp. If you have made a true assessment of yourself, you can head in the right direction instead of going stray.
So, instead of getting a standard portfolio, discuss your goals with your photographer and customize everything as per your requirements and objectives. What kind of assignments are you seeking? Which areas do you wish to explore? Print modeling, TVCs, Films or web-series? Amongst the modeling categories, which one do you fit in the most? would like to model for Sports and fitness, Glamour, Western, Lingerie and swimwear, jewelry, Indian ethnic wear..... the list is endless but you should consider what you relate to the most.
The kind of roles you wish to play should come through and show in your portfolio as well.
Meet the Photographer
It's very crucial to meet the photographer beforehand to discuss all these points in person. However, if you have time constraints, you can always discuss this via a video call as well. Visiting the studio and meeting the photographer helps you relax and be more comfortable on the day of the shoot.
Practice the Poses
There is no end to the amount of time you can spend in front of the mirror to practice and improve your poses and expressions, while at the same time, ensuring that you are not over-exaggerating your body language.
This exercise really helps in being yourself with your body especially when you face the camera. certain poses may even look odd as you are not used to it but these look great in the photographs. You may not always stand or portray yourself in you day-to-day life like that but then you are exploring this ever-evolving world of glitz and glamour.
It also depends on the eye behind the camera, as to how he/she composes the whole thing in the camera. The pose may look odd otherwise but may look great in a photograph as only a certain part maybe show in the picture. The posing adds to the whole dynamics in the photograph.
Plan and choose your wardrobe.
Even if you have hired a stylist for the purpose, it's never a bad idea to discuss everything beforehand instead of leaving it to chance, for the last minute. There is no substitute for good fitting. Share your exact measurement with the stylist, so that he or she can pick up the right stuff for you. Of course, you can manage with clips and pins, but that is only to a certain extent and being close to your statistics is always good.
These fine details may not always show very prominently in the photographs but do make a huge difference in the overall quality of your portfolio.
Relax and Sleep well
Do not stress yourself before the shoot. You day before should be relaxed and sleep early so that you begin fresh on the day of the shoot. Start early so that you have the whole day for yourself to explore. If things don't well on the day of the shoot, the photographer will have enough time to help you improvise. on the other hand, if things are going great, it will be an opportunity to explore and try out new and innovative things for your portfolio. So, both ways having more time at hand is always better to avoid a rushing situation.
Makeup and Hair
Follow the guidelines if any, to be followed before the shoot. It takes about an hour or so for the makeup and hair. which is why it helps to start early so that there is ample time for the shoot. We always hire the most professional and talented makeup and hair stylists on our shoots. If you have any points to discuss and are allergic to any cosmetics, it's better to bring this to our attention beforehand. Sometimes, certain brands, however, reputed these may be, do not suit certain skin types. Let us know so that we can make appropriate arrangements.
Discuss all your looks. You don't have to tick everything as a checklist for the sake of it but do what looks great on you. The makeup artist being a professional has the expertise to do corrective makeup to highlight the best features of you face and to conceal the flaws.
Go through the Photographs
Now that everything is shot digitally, Munish, ensures that he shows the images to the models as these are clicked. he guides and helps them improve by pointing out the positive and negative aspects of both the poses and the expressions. it helps in quick self-assessment and performance improves drastically.
Further, if you notice that something is not working out the way you expected, do let it be known as at this point of time, everything can be changed and molded as per your brief. However, its a combination of your brief and the photographer's vision to put it across in the most creative and pleasing manner.
Be Open to Explore
many poses and ideas suggested by us may not sound very appealing in the first go but certainly do turn up great in the photographs. Be Open to new ideas and styles. Everything adds to it and compliments your photographs. The idea is to have a good showcase of your versatility and not just plain simple shots.
Since you are not used to it, it may be quite demanding and challenging physically to keep posing, smiling and following to the tune of the camera for the whole day. No, it's not a herculean task either but be prepared for a long day ahead. :-)
Cover different kinds of Looks to portray your versatility and also to ensure that your portfolio is not restricted to just certain areas of interest. Ofcourse leave aside what you definitely do not wish to venture into but cover whatever is there in your aspiration as a model.
It's always good to let the photographer decide on the final images that go ahead to be a part of your final portfolio. You can of course give your input and these are always welcome but do not underestimate the eye behind the camera. One who has shot you would know the best, which ones to keep and which ones to discard.
Less is More
There is always this temptation to add more and more photographs to your final portfolio. keep it to the minimum and relevant to your objective. If you are approaching a prospective client of Indian ethnic wear, it makes little sense to add images shot in swimwear. So, your portfolio should carry less photographs and should change as per your objective. You can always remove or add photographs while sending to a particular client.
Our Web Portal
All the selected and retouched photographs are uploaded on one of the galleries on our website protected by a password or open to the public as per your request. You can share this simple link directly with your prospective clients which may be Modeling agencies or Casting Directors from the Film industry. You may also upload these to one of your own Google drive or on your own website if you have one.
Prints, coffee table Books or just Soft copies.
Based on your budget, whichever way you go ahead with, it should look professional and organized. We give you soft copies as a part of your modeling portfolio package but can surely assist you with the books and prints. There are both pros and cons. In a book it is not possible to change the sequence of photographs. If you put these prints in a neat folder, you can not only change the sequence of photographs but remove and add photographs as well. Start with your best photographs so that even if someone does not see all, would at least see the best ones. Observe the feedback of your Modeling and casting Agencies so that you can tweak the sequence. Those which are liked more should ideally be placed first.
Your portfolio should carry more specific photographs when approaching a specialty client who is looking for a model or an actor in a particular category. Closeup shots may carry more weight for jewelry advertisements whereas Full-length pictures are a must for ramp modeling.
Presentation matters the most. Keep everything handy, just in case you need to show additional photographs of a particular style. When showing online, ideally show the portfolio on your own device so that you are sure about how these appear on your laptop or tablet screen. Your clients may not have too much time, so being organized helps in achieving more in the limited time frame.
Now the portfolio is ready. What next?
Reach out to different modeling agencies and casting directors. Email them your photographs or as the case may be. Guidelines should generally be mentioned on their websites. Do not send hundred of photographs but only the limited selection which we have mutually decided to go ahead with.
What if there are no Assignments?
If your Portfolio is good and you are confident about it, it's only a matter of time before you start getting assignments. There is no magic wand to get the work faster. Make sure that you are reaching out to as many people as you can. This increases the probability of getting more assignments. Of course, you should send photographs only to people who matter. Make sure that you have your resume attached and your contact number is easily accessible. Sometimes, you may not fit any of the assignments which may be open or available at a particular time. Keeping tracking.
How to handle Auditions?
Once you are shortlisted for a Television commercial, web series or film, you will be called for an Audition or asked to submit an Audition online. This is where you have to apply your acting skills but do read the brief very carefully and go about doing things exactly a asked for. Do not overdo or underplay your performance. Keep the lighting and camera angles appropriate if you are doing it yourself. Wide angles on you camera phone are not very complementary and should be avoided. Highlight your expressions and dialogue delivery as per the script given to you. The objective of an Audition is to further shortlist the actors based on your acting skills and to check if you relate well to the role in question. So, if you have come this far, it is because of your portfolio and beyond this, it will be your talent in acting that will help out.
Once you get your first assignment, do it to the best of your capabilities. Do not forget that a Bad word spreads faster than a good one. Be punctual, professional and committed to your job. All these factors will help you get more recommendations and get more work by word of mouth. Of course, there are always the chances that the production house may want to repeat you in their other projects as well, if satisfied by your performance.
we may or may not take new models in our own shoots
It all depends on what is going on at that particular time. As a photographer, an assignment may land up with me at a point when everything is already decided. At times, the requirements may not match your profile. So, it is always better to be more dependent on a modeling and casting agency as compared to an individual photographer for getting more assignments. Otherwise, if there is an opportunity, i do prefer working with my own models if you have the right talent.
Getting paid for an Assignment.
This is a very relative term and would vary from project to project as well as your own talent. Do keep in mind that anyone who gets you work is entitled to a commission which may range from 30% to 40% and may differ from Agency to the agency. So you will either get the money after this deduction or you will be paying it out of your fees when paid.
It does not always work out in modeling and Films.
No, despite the fact that everything worked favorably for you, it may still not work big time in the glamour industry and there is nothing to be disheartened about. You may stay persistent and continue with your efforts to achieve your goals or move on. But there is no way to predict the same and unless you try it out and go through the journey, you won't know.
Do Remember, even if it does not work, you do end up with a lot of great photographs of yourself and the fact that you did try.
On the other hand, if you are talented, no matter what, keep moving ahead confidently and you should be able to meet your goals.
Update your portfolio if required.
Modeling portfolios have quite a long life provided there are no drastic changes in you. If you have changed physically, you certainly should update your portfolio as well to keep pace with the change.
Portfolios of Kids and teenagers need to be updated quite often as there are definite physical changes as they grow with time.