Even models who are with an agency may need to or want to find jobs on their own. Freelance models need to find their own work because they have no (or limited) representation. Agency models may want also look for their own work. It is typical for an agent or agency to represent many models. While agents are looking for work for you they are also looking for work for their other talent. There may be times when they are not booking you for the type of work you want or you may just be getting skipped over. Finding your own work will also keep you on top of what is going on in the industry. It may also help you to see if your agent is doing what he or she should be doing.
A couple ways to find out about jobs are:
- Word of mouth
- Social networking sites
- Classified ads
The first may come in the form of a phone call or an email from another model or actor. This a good way to find out about reliable jobs. This means a job probably actually exists and it is probably paid. Be careful going to a casting that someone's agency sent them to and this is why. I once went to a casting for a major department store's fashion show. I saw a few models at the casting that I knew. They told me they came because their friends told them about it. When my agent sent me to this casting she told me that all the female models for this show would be chosen from our agency. Later I found out that all the male models were promised to another agency. That was not the last time that happened. Know that if you are getting a casting notice from someone who got it from their agency you may be waisting your time.
Social networking sits may be a good place to make reliable connections. There may also be a section for job postings. Making connections this way has a high reliability factor. Here is an example of a scenario that would happen all the time. Jack would send me a public or private message on a ModelsModes.com about working on a project. If I was not interested I would say 'Thanks but no thanks', in a professional way. If I was interested I would start cross-referencing. I would go to Jack's profile to view their public correspondences. There I see that me friend Stacy has posted to Jack's profile a couple times. Then I would contact Stacy to say that Jack has invited me to work on this new project. Stacy person would either tell me that Jack was weird and unprofessional or she would sing his praises. Jack might offer his own references but it is better to find a reference that you know and trust. If a project is posted in a forum or a job board you can follow the same steps. Some of my favorite social sites for models are Model Mayhem and Lodel Launch
This post is getting a little long so let's continue later!
To Be Continued...