Model search

Hello ladies. Today I want to talk about the dangers of model searches. Model searches serve a purpose: they get potential models in front of agents they would never usually get a chance to see. That is all. The experience is a complete shot in the dark and not everyone is going to be selected. If you go into the experience knowing that, good for you.

I am addressing those that go for the agent's validation. These are the women who think an agent's selection makes them beautiful.

They are the women who come home devastated and second-guessing how special they are all because an agent didn't choose them. Well, I want to tell you a few things you should remember before you even think about it.

First of all, no one should hold that kind of power in your life. You should know who you are and feel good about that. Agents are at these conventions to scout beauty. So if they don't like your look you must be ugly? Wrong. An agent's job is to scout a model that has a sellable look. It has nothing to do with you personally. I know, I have been there.

I have been modeling professionally off and on since 1989. I have appeared in two calendars, advertisements and on many small runways in Europe and the U.S. I always wondered if I had what it took to make the big time so when I heard there was going to be a cattle call I decided to go. I was selected to attend a model search by New York Models in 1996, but didn't. However their motto stayed in my head, 'You'll never know if you don't go." When the agency's plus size division "Visions" came to town, I went again. I was selected for a weekend in Seattle. This time I decided to try it. I attended that convention with 215 other women from the Pacific region.

On the day of call- backs, 30-35 women were selected ranging from size 10 to size 24. I was not one of them. But I held my head high. One agent told me that I had potential and the reason I wasn't selected was because I was not tall enough (I'm 5'5). I said OK and congratulated the women who were selected.

Then I noticed the fallout around me. A majority of women were crying. They were devastated. Their tears were of disappointment, hurt and rejection. At first I did not understand why. Then I started listening to them talk and console one another and it hit me. They needed the agent's validation. Not being selected meant they were not as pretty as they had thought. I remember thinking 'Wow.' An agent's validation had never entered my mind. But these women needed an agent to say you are big and beautiful. I was blown away.

- Advertisement -

I immediately went into action. I told these women that they were awesome. Hey, they were selected to attend a weekend that thousands had tried for. That was something in itself. Then I told them to take all the things they had learned that weekend and put it to good use. Some women were receptive; others were not. Ladies, you have to remember a few key things when attending these kind of functions. First of all, never need someone else¹s validation of yourself. Attend a model search knowing who and what you are. Use the experience as a stepping stone.

Second, know that agents have a certain look in mind. They have to choose a face that is marketable. Rejection is not personal or about you. The woman selected by all eight agencies was a size 10 and looked like Malibu Barbie. She was gorgeous.

Third, models are a certain size, whether plus size or not. Plus-size models start at size 10. You have to be at least 5¹8 or taller. If you aren't tall enough maybe an acting agent might consider you. Lastly, always remember that you are beautiful. You have to know that from deep within yourself. No one can know that for you. So keep your head up and work it girl. 'Til next week be safe.