Starting a baby in the modelling and/or acting business is difficult at best. All parents think their child is the most beautiful, talented, and adorable baby in the world. It's difficult to assess your own child with a critical eye. But if you think your child has that certain something, there are some tools that will help you get started.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
Things you need
- Adorable baby
- Portfolio of photographs
- Head shots with measurements and child-specific information
- Business cards
- Agent (possibly)
Take your baby's photograph in different kinds of clothing, with different lighting and moods. It's usually best to have three to four different settings for a portfolio to show your child in a variety of situations. After you have taken the photos, develop them in 8 1/2" x 10" size and put them together in a professional looking portfolio. Black leather is standard.
Order head shots online or from a company that specialises in producing them. At the end of this article, you'll find a website that specialises in modelling "comps." These are complimentary promotional items that you give to prospective clients. You will need to select your child's photo (or several photos) that you have taken or own the copyright to. Then, select the information you'd like displayed on the head shot. Most commonly this is weight, age, height, eye and hair colour, shoe size, shirt and pant size, and any distinguishing marks. This information can be placed on the back, bottom or side of the photo. Many agencies will tell you need professional photos of your child. This is not necessary so long as the photos are of good quality and show your child in a variety of settings.
Order some business cards with your information and that of your child displayed clearly. You can give these to prospective agents and/or clients. Head shots are expensive, so you only want to give them to clients with a serious interest in your little one. Business cards can be purchased for the cost of shipping from several online retailers.
Visit a local talent agency listed in the yellow pages under "talent agents." You may find it best to visit several in one day so that you can get a feel for those that are available within your market area. Give them a look at your child's portfolio and a head shot if you feel they are legitimate and have a good track record of booking jobs for child actors and models. Many agencies will promise, but few truly deliver. It's important to check the references of the agency and ask for specific examples of their clients and recent material that has featured their talent.
Remember that you need not have an agent to get your child started in baby modelling and acting. You can be your child's agent, but this takes a lot of patience, time, persistence and determination. You have to be willing to face rejection.
Tips and warnings
- Be wary of companies that send e-mails entitled "America's Baby Model Talent Search" or "Seeking Talented Baby Actors and Models." This is almost always the hallmark of a photography scam where a company lures you in by promising to publish and/or market your baby's image. The companies usually get your business and photos by paying you a very small one-time fee. They then publish them in a keepsake book which they try to sell to you. The same company will then receive money without your knowledge by distributing your baby photos marketed to their prospective clients for twice the price.
- It is highly unlikely to find a reputable and successful talent agency outside of the major markets--Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and, some say, Denver. If you do not live in one of these major market areas, it is best to travel to them and/or seek agencies that may be willing to work with you long-distance. This is not unheard of and in fact, may be the ideal situation for those located in remote locations.
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