Here are 10 tips to becoming a successful fashion model.
1. Get some snapshots taken and approach a local fashion modeling agency. Agencies love to see snapshots. Use natural light. Have a friend shoot a roll of film and pic out the best ones. Call up the modeling agencies in your area and ask when their open call times are. Open calls are times that agencies set aside to see new models. Dress simple and nicely and be prepared to ask any questions they have of you.
2. Move to a major market. New York is "king" when it comes to fashion modeling. Try and get signed by a major agency there like Ford, Elite or IMG. Most of the major cosmetic and advertising contracts come out of New York. If you are living in the United States Los Angeles, Miami are also great alternatives. If you are living in Europe consider Paris, London or Milan.
3. Be thin. Hire the services of a professional trainer and nutritionist if you have problems keeping the weight off. Agents routinely measure and weigh fashion models. Many models are dropped from their agencies for not having the correct measurements.
4. Network. It is important to work with the best photographers you can. Hire them. Get amazing pictures. It is your job and although agencies may assist you with this ultimately it is your responsibility. The images photographers give you will make or break you. Be nice to them and test as frequently as you can. Unless you are Heidi Klum of have books loaded with amazing tearsheets, keep testing.
5. Show up. It is very important to be on time. If you have a fashion shoot the next day do not go out and party. Look your best. Photographers are in constant contact with the agencies and will let them and future clients know if you have a bad reputation. When you are on set be courteous and stay off your cellphone. It is important to focus on the task at hand.
6. Become friends with powerful people. Editors like Anna Wintour of Vogue can make you famous. Superstar photographer Steven Meisel can launch your career instantly. Be nice to them and other industry professionals. You never know which assistant will be the next fashion editor or star photographer.
7. Date celebrities. Gisele Bundchen dated Leonardo DiCaprio before moving on to quarterback Tom Brady. Kate Moss was romantically linked for years to Johnny Depp and then became involved with British rocker Pete Doherty.
8. Brand yourself. Heidi Klum has a jewelry line. Gisele Bundchen is in talks with H&M about representing her lingerie line. You can buy Kate Moss's clothes at Top Shop.
9. Have the right measurements. Although they fluctuate between markets the ideal measurement is to stand at least 5'9" barefoot and weigh between 110 and 120 pounds. If you are a lot smaller consider commercial modeling and approach acting agencies. They need all types and sizes.
10. Be photogenic. The industry is fickle and what is hot one year isn't necessarily hot the next. If you are photogenic and have that certain "je ne sais quois" (something special) you will attract modeling business. (By Robert Voltaire)