What every parent should know about child modelling.
It can be every parents dream to open up a publication or look on the internet and see their child in an advert smiling back at them. But the reality is that it often takes a lot of hard work from both the parent and child to get them there. Child modelling is a highly competitive industry, clients will see hundreds of similar looking children at castings and picking your child depends upon a variety of factors; Firstly your child's behaviour on the day, the reality is children get bored, shy, have a bad day and don't always want to be photographed.
Quite often the child is given a number, called up and asked to stand in front of a screen with bright lights and strangers staring back at them and may be asked to do some simple tasks like smile, turn around, maybe change in to a test outfit - This can be quite daunting to most children.
Modelling should be fun - Nobody wants to work with a distressed child on set.
If your child is particularly shy and would find this overwhelming then the reality is that child modelling is possibly not for them. This may sound harsh, but the reality is a shoot producer and photographer simply do not have the time to be waiting whilst the parent tries to get their child to work.
Not all castings equal jobs
In the beginning, especially, you can attend several castings at your own cost with a lot of waiting around and not hear back because it is a highly competitive industry and work is never guaranteed. However, sometimes work can be sourced from photographs. Once a child has an established portfolio they do tend to get repeat jobs with the same clients, especially when a photographer finds they work well with the model.
But my child is beautiful, why have they not had jobs yet?
Your child may have attended several castings but not been shortlisted for jobs. As a parent you need to be objective and put yourself in a casting directors shoes, they are looking for a child who will take direction well as they are working to a time scale and time costs money!
For example, some children will straight away walk on set and cuddle another child they have never met before, if your child would be hesitant at this or reluctant and take a long time to warm up into things then they possibly are not suitable for commercial modelling.
We see lots of children who are beautiful and very photogenic but do not have the confidence and personality to work in this industry. Please think about how your child may respond in a studio type situation before applying.