Holland State Park Modeling Session

How To Start Your Modeling Career | Grand Rapids Modeling Photographer

November 12, 2017

It’s no secret that modeling is a tough industry to crack into. But what if there was a way you could start working on the dream even if you haven’t had that big break yet? I’ve worked with a few models over the past two years, and I’m here to expose to you some of the things they’ve done to kick start their careers.


How To Start Your Modeling Career



I’m not just throwing around business terms, but you are indeed selling something: you’re selling yourself… (my inner child laughed and then my inner adult questioned if I should leave it.) It’s true though, you are selling your talents, and the number one rule when selling anything is to know who you are selling to. When you know who it is you’re trying to sell to, then you know how to structure you’re portfolio and give them exactly what they want. You wouldn’t want to send fashion photo’s into a fitness magazine right? I know it seems like common sense, but in the very beginning, you want a consistent portfolio so that you seem like a master of you’re trade. Later, you can start to dabble in other areas. Moral of the story, choose the type of modeling your heart loves the most first!

I love sitting down with my models and helping them identify not only what niche of modeling they want to peruse, but also how they can affectively target those agents. 


Now that you know who you are trying to target,  you can start building a portfolio of images that represents said portion of the industry. Im not going to lie, doing this can be costly. This is why when you book a session with me, I go above and beyond to make sure that we get a diverse set of images that give you a kick start into the industry. I also include a hand made portfolio that you can bring with you to modeling calls or show potential agents.  You can inquire more about sessions HERE.

I always include a free album with every modeling session, and reduced price updates on future portfolios so that you have a head start. 

Grand Rapids Senior Photo by Sidney Baker-Green



In addition to building your initial portfolio, you’re going to want to expand on that portfolio. The initial investment can be costly to some; however, the expansion doesn’t have to be. The world of social media, especially Instagram, has allowed many models to not only gain strong relationships with photographers, but also get some images on the house. (Some photographers are probably going to hate me for saying that.) It’s true though, and it benefits both parties. If you can come to a photographer with an idea for a shoot that benefits both of your portfolios, then chances are they are going to work with you as a collaboration, and not a sale. And who doesn’t like saving money?

I always work with past clients on the house in order to help them expand their portfolio. You’re not just a client: you’re are a friend. 

How To Start Your Modeling Career | Grand Rapids Modeling Photographer



“Who’s your modeling agency? Instagram?” Damn straight. It was always a running joke until Instagram started making peoples careers. The world we live in is changing, and the industry recognizes that. Once you have built a brand and a following through your modeling, you’re then able to start reaching big gigs because of your social media power. You like gigs which equate to money, and agents like models who have a large following, because that leads to exposure for them. Think about the Kardashians, they get almost any exposure they want because when they talk about it on IG, people go back to the source and give the big guys some publicity. WIN WIN.

I always include social media coaching to my models in addition to their photography services because I want you to be the best you can be. 



Naomi Campbell is already taken. David Beckham has himself on lock. This is your story, and although these people may be your inspiration, it’s important to create your own unique name. That my friend is your most valuable asset. No one can do you like you. I know it’s hard, especially if you don’t really know who you are. I too was in your shoes. I let the voice of others drown out my inner self. I let the thoughts of who society said I was supposed to be drown the person that was. I was able to break free from the plague, and you can too my friend.


One of the most beneficial things my models get are free branding sessions. I help you identify what it is you stand for, and more importantly how you can convey that not only though your modeling and social media, but also through your words and actions.