The Basics To Signing With A Modeling Agency
Updated: Feb 21
1. Research agencies in your area.
Search for modeling agencies in your area. It's important to remember that every modeling agency is looking for something different. For example, modeling agencies in the Pacific Northwest are in an athletic based market, with Nike and Adidas being some of their biggest clients. So it's safe to say that Portland, Oregon and Seattle modeling agencies are often searching for athletic models to fit the athletic jobs needed their area.
On the other side of the United States, Miami is known for being in a commercial and swimwear market. This market includes huge clothing companies, bikini boutiques, and jewelry shops go to hire models for campaigns.
New York City is known for their high fashion international market. Runway shows are very popular in New York, and so every model has to be around the same height and same build, with unique and distinct features.
Agencies in different markets not only look for different looks, but they also have different requirements. One being that most agencies prefer female models to be between 5'7"-5'11". Make sure you check the agency's website to see if you qualify for all of their requirements. If you don't fit every requirement, it would still be worth going to an open call to meet in person. So while you can get signed in any area with any look, it is beneficial to know what agencies are looking for what look before visiting.
2. Follow modeling agencies on social media.
Social media is a very common way for modeling agencies to scout online. Following an agency on Instagram may help you get noticed. Though this isn't a foolproof method, agencies often go through their followers to find new faces to sign.
3. Use agency hashtags.
Using agency hashtags on social media is a super simple and effective way to get modeling agencies to see you! Agencies use hashtags to easily scout models who are interested in being signed to their agency. Make sure you have a public profile and that you are not on private. Hashtags won't work unless you have a public account.
*Here are a few modeling agency hashtags:
4. Find out what days the agency has open calls.
Open calls are a popular way that agencies like to meet with people they are considering signing. An open call is where you go in and meet with someone from the agency, take head shots, and tell them about yourself to see if you would be an ideal model for them. Look on the agency's website to find their open call dates. If they are not listed, try searching their Instagram and other social media platforms before emailing/calling.
5. Prepare for your open call.
Once you've narrowed down a list of agencies you love and qualify for, you should be sure to prepare for each open call. Make sure you are drinking lots of water, washing your face, and making sure your skin is as clear as possible. It's very important to most agencies that their models have clear skin. This is so that when the models book jobs, less retouching can be done. It's also super important to meet your agency with as natural of a makeup look possible, preferably with no makeup. Agencies want to see you completely natural.
If you have your hair dyed an unnatural color, it's recommended that you should get it dyed back to a natural color before going in. Having your hair a very unique color makes it more difficult for agencies to book you jobs. Make sure you also go into the open call with your natural hair. If you have straight hair, wear it straight. If you have curly hair, wear it curly. This will just show the agency how you look naturally.
Natural colored nails with no acrylics are recommended.
What to Wear
You should wear something that is form fitting. The most common thing to wear to an open call is a black tank top or black short sleeve shirt, and black or blue jeans. This helps the agency know your body shape.
Don't forget to go in with a positive attitude and a smile. Agencies look at personality as much as they do looks. Be yourself and have fun.
I hope these tips help you build the strength and knowledge to get signed to an agency. If you have any questions, feel free to message me on Instagram @briplewphotos. Good luck! :)