There are good habits that you should start to live by as you and your little model start your modeling career. By following some of the advice below you will set yourself up for success and hopefully get yourself invited back! These tips work for casting calls or bookings. Either way work hard to put your best foot forward and use this as a learning opportunity for your little model.
Be well behaved and respectful. Casting calls and bookings can be stressful on all of the staff that is involved. You want to make it easy on them and stand out.
Smile and be happy. To help present yourself and your modeling agency well being upbeat and smiling will definitely help. It is important to remember that modeling is a job and jobs can be a lot of work, so you may not always be in the best of moods, but while you are there, your overall presentation to the casting director and staff is very important
If your child is a little older, stress the importance of listening to the directions of the photographer, casting director, or staff. The more your little baby model can follow directions the better they will do in this industry.
Be on time and preferably a bit early. You should aim to be 10 to 15 minutes early to allow for finding the right room in the building and finding a restroom or changing a diaper quick if needed. This is even more important when you are at an open casting call. First impressions matter a lot in this industry. If you can make a great early impression on the folks that are making the decision, that will go a long way for your success. Compare that to showing up as one of the last few people there when they are all tired and just trying to make it through.
Always be respectful. Use your good judgement for those around you and those that are at work. Being quiet and sit still as long as you can. If you need to hop on a call or let your toddler burn off some energy, step outside a bit. It is a much better solution to be polite and respectful than be seen as the parent and model that is a hassle to deal with.
Have your little models stats – current height, weight, measurements, and clothing sizing on hand. Some auditions will still ask you for that info.
Always make sure you have your special shoot back packed. Purchase a lightweight tote bag (or large diaper bag) with the following items on all your casting calls and bookings. Your voucher, minor work permit, your coogan account information, a favorite attention getting toy or two, white shoes or booties, white diapers (babies), hats, headbands or barrettes. It is also important to pack non-messy stacks for you and your little model.
Be professional and courteous at all times. Remember it is a job and the people there are working. Modeling is a pretty different industry than most folks are used to. Remembering that it is a work environment will help keep things in perspective and generally on your good behavior.
It might make sense to have a few headshots with your agencies information on it. You never know what may happen and if they know how to book you at a later date all the better. If that opportunity came and you were empty handed you’d be kicking yourself later. Even companies that are just doing catalog modeling usually will also do commercials of some sort and your little model may be a great fit.
Be supportive of your child. Instead of being a crazy stage mom, it is important to capture as much learning out of the experience as you can for your child. Along with that is being supportive so they know they can pick themselves up and keep going. Parents play a large role in demonstrating that ability and teaching that skill to their children.
Always bring non-messy snacks and water. Waiting can be hard enough. Waiting when you are hungry and thirsty can be unbearable for kids (and parents).
If it doesn’t go well try to use it as a learning opportunity as we mentioned above. But keep it fun as well and swing by for a nice snack or something on the way home. If it isnt fun for your little one it won’t be worth it for them or you.
Don’t be “pushy” when you are at casting calls. Like we mentioned above, you never know who you’ll be interacting with and the decision power they have in your success.
Don’t be late. Other than being rude in general, it could put you at the end of the line. Which, depending on the day and your child could be a very bad thing.
A part of not being a stage mom is not taking it personally if your child isn’t selected to go forward. Modeling is a very subjective and finicky business. THe client is going after a certain look, not necessarily the “best looking” child. So try hard not to take it personally.
Only go to casting calls that your agency sent you to. Your modeling agency is looking out for your best interest and it is important that you only go to casting calls they are aware of when you are working with one.
Don’t let your children run around like crazy they are at a jungle gym. If they need to burn off some steam take them outside for a few minutes. There is an entire team of folks trying to get their job done, you should aim to make it easier, not harder.
When your baby model is on set with the photographer take his direction, don’t start directing things yourself. More than likely they will want your help to get your baby to smile or whatever. Your job is to follow their lead, not coach your child on what to do.