Models Stop Agency Ripp-Offs for Photos
Model Portfolio 2 Looks for Nick Gavin demonstrates the promotional energy and creativity that can come even from our basic model portfolio session at Church Street Studios. Models and their friends and family need to understand how to recognize quality photography along with truly helpful representation by real model agencies. They especially need to be on the lookout for scams when it comes to the creation of a model portfolio.
The most important rule of thumb is this: if you are paying an agency for your photography, you are getting ripped off. The agencies that are for real, and actually make their money from bookings of their models, do not sell photography. If a model needs photos the agency will usually have a list of vetted photographers that are trusted. The model is often told to check out the web sites of the photographers on the list and perhaps schedule an appointment to meet with them and see their studio work space. The model then makes a decision based on their best instincts. And most importantly, when the photo shoot takes place, the model pays the photographer for the photo session, not the agency.
When you pay an agency for your photographs it means that the agency is making money from the photography. Such agencies are typically making the bulk of their money from photography, classes, comp cards and model conventions rather than from bookings. The way they do this with photography is simply by hiring a student or wannabe photographer who is struggling to find business, paying them a couple hundred dollars or less to shoot your portfolio, and charging you a small fortune.
This is not a good thing for you as the model for two reasons. First, If the agency is not making the bulk of their money from bookings, it means that you, as a model, are very unlikely to get booked through your affiliation with the agency. Second, it means that you are overpaying for photography that most often is not up to professional standards. You may not realize it at first because you are not used to the wide variation in levels of quality that abound in the new wild west of professional photography, where there are far more amateurs posing as professionals than there are actual professionals.
There is only a handful of real model agencies in the Philadelphia area, and only a handful of real photographers. Take your time to sort out the wheat from the chaff. You can’t afford to waste your time and money.