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First modeling portfolio picture of a Tampa model on Tampa Bay Modeling. All portfolio photographs, unless otherwise noted, by C. A. Passinault, lead photographer for Aurora PhotoArts Tampa Photography and Design, as well as Director of Tampa Bay Modeling. C. A. Passinault is a top photographer, as well as a modeling expert.Second model photograph on Tampa Bay Modeling. Click on the image for an anecdote of the modeling shoot which produced this picture.In this third picture, you can see why the Tampa Bay area is one of the best in the world for modeling portfolio development work. Photograph by Tampa photographer C. A. Passinault.Image four of our online portfolio of another Tampa model. This photograph, if we are not mistaken, was taken on location in the Tampa Bay area. The best modeling portfolio photographs are location shots.This is another great picture. This is the fifth model photograph on Tampa Bay Modeling. Pictures featured in our thumbnail array may not be the same as those of models which are in our featured model section, but often, they are one and the same.Unmatched in any Florida modeling market. The quality of this image is excellent! Photograph by C. A. Passinault, our resident photographer and modeling expert.Another top Tampa model gets their look on. The best models can obtain a wide range of looks, as you can see when you look at other pictures of this model!Is it any wonder why more and more companies and art directors are booking independent models without going through an agency? Proof that you can be a professional model, with a lucrative career, without being dependent upon an agency to find and book modeling jobs!Another awesome photograph of a Tampa model by modeling photographer C. A. Passinault, lead photographer Aurora PhotoArts, and director of Tampa Bay Modeling.For modeling portfolio work in the Tampa Bay area, nothing beats location work. Studio photography is not nearly as cost effective, or appropriate, for modeling portfolio work.Keep in mind that this picture, for a modeling portfolio, was taken by a qualified modeling portfolio photographer, C. A. Passinault, for a specialized, professional market, which is modeling. A wedding photographer or a portrait studio will not be able to give models what they need for an effective modeling portfolio, as you have to know what you are doing!This is the 12th picture in our Tampa Bay Modeling online portfolio. Yet another Tampa model shows a marketable look in their portfolio. The best models are capable of the most looks, and are not locked into a single look!Agency model or independent model? It doesnt matter, anymore, especially in Tampa Bay. Professional models like this one can be booked without going through an agency, saving both the model and the job agency fees.Modeling portfolios need at least six looks, and by looks, we mean different looks. A composite cards needs at least five, on average, with a headshot on the front, and four different looks on the back of the comp card. This Tampa model is demonstrating a marketable look right now, in this photography. Picture by C. A. Passinault.



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1a. Am I model material?

1e. Modeling Photography and Exploitation Scams

Am I model material? - Modeling Job Scams - Model Placement Scams - Modeling Management And Modeling Agency Scams - Modeling Photography And Exploitation Scams

Well, we’ve already hinted that models whom are dependent also compromise, and allow others in power over them to take advantage of them.
Models are often exploited, and this is often a result of self esteem issues, insecurity, and ignorance. Sure, a model can be ripped off financially by being scammed, but an even greater danger to the model, and their career, is being exploited. You are, essentially, what you do; an individual is the sum of their experiences!
This is especially true in the field of modeling portfolio photography.
With high quality digital cameras now plentiful and cheap, and the costs of film and development, which actually served to keep the photography industry professional, there are a lot of photographers flooding the industry, now, and many of them do not have the best interests of models in mind.
Today, anyone can go out, buy a digital camera, take a lot of pictures of attractive women for free, and then claim to be a photographer. This doesn’t make it so, however.
Because of the low cost of entry to photography which digital camera make possible, there are a lot of people out there who claim to be photographers, but who do not belong in the photography industry. They have not paid their dues, don’t know what they are doing, and have motives which are questionable, at best, and dangerous, at worst.
As a model, would you feel comfortable working with a guy who goes to strip clubs to leer at women and objectify them, or the criminal who takes pictures up the skirt of a woman without their knowledge? How do you know that you are working with a professional? With anyone able to obtain a camera and shoot, how can you be safe?
As many as half of the photographers out there now, claiming to shoot models, are either lying, and / or are out to rip off models. Many of those are out to exploit women, and often, they will try to make money doing it.
Today, because there are a lot of amateur guys with cameras running around claiming to be professional photographers, it can be really difficult to find a good photographer. Or, is it?
Consider the following guidelines when you look for a modeling portfolio photographer.

1. Make sure that the photographer has invested in their career.
Make sure that the photographer has a professional web site, with a .Com or other domain name, that they have a printed portfolio, and that they are licensed.
We’ve heard the half-true advice that the best way that someone can tell if a photographer is a professional is if they have an occupational licence, so that they can legally make money as a photographer. This is just one part of the big picture, however, and it is certainly not the deciding factor, especially since anyone can go out, pay of an occupational license, and then say that they are a “professional” photographer. Remember that photography is not regulated in Florida like a modeling agency is. It is not regulated by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. All that you need to do business as a photographer is an occupational license, which can be purchased in the Tampa Bay area for as little as $22.00.
So, according to the logic of a certain photography association, all that it takes to become a professional photographer is an inexpensive occupational license? That’s it?
No. You are what you do. What a photographer does is what defines them as a professional photographer, and being a legally licensed business is only a small part of it.
When looking for a photographer, are you looking for some knucklehead to aim a camera at you and click off some pictures, or are you looking for experience; the experience which enables them to take great, usable pictures? Photography is far from an easy thing, and you only have to look at all of the cell phone snap shots cluttering the Internet to see that. The vast majority of pictures taken by consumers with cell phones suck, and they are useless for the promotion and the marketing of anything. It’s obvious that most consumers lack the experience, and the skills, to take professional pictures, regardless of what kind of camera that they are using.
We live in a disposable society these days, a society which, enabled by technology, has low standards. Technology enables anyone to do just about anything that they want to do, with no cost hurdles or investment required. Hell, people don’t even write letters anymore. They text each other crimped text messages which aren’t even spelled correctly. The cheap, easy way of doing things these days creates an environment where no one expects, or gets, respect. Few have any incentive to actually acquire skills, either, since they are content to do what everyone else is doing.
This disposable, irreverent society can be a good thing, however. You see, if marketed correctly, the work of real professionals shines even brighter when compared to all of crap that everyone else is doing. When you have signal, you can rise above the noise.
It’s just that the people who would be customers, who need great photographs, need to be educated about the value of investing in good quality. Aspiring models really have no choice but to invest in professional modeling portfolio photography, especially when they have to compete against other models for the same modeling jobs, and whom are using professional modeling portfolios to a market their careers.
With photographers, which of the following would you choose?

1. A photographer who advertises from craigslist, offering photography for less than $50.00. The photographer tells models that they have to have sexy pictures in their portfolio for them to get work. The photographer has a few mediocre pictures to show the model in person, and they are nothing like the pictures which were emailed to the model. The photographer also does not have a web site.
The photographer, of course, looks you over, and offers to shoot you for free if he can take some “artistic” nudes of you at his place.

2. A photographer who markets their business off of a freebie social media site like facebook or myspace. The photographer does not have a printed portfolio, but has plenty of awesome pictures on their profile. They don’t have a web site, either.
When questioned about modeling portfolios, the photographer replies that he takes great pictures of people, and that good pictures are all that you need.

3. A photographer who has a professional web site with a .Com domain name, a printed portfolio with great pictures which match the ones that you see online, has an occupational license, and has been in business for years. They also have references.
When asked about modeling portfolios, the photographers ask the model what kind of modeling market that they intend to work in.

4. A photographer who has a professional web site with a .Com domain name, a printed portfolio with excellent pictures, and everything else that the third one does.
When asked about modeling portfolios, the photographer tells you that he will give you a discount if you want to do nude modeling.

5. A photographer who has a portfolio with good work, and other things which make him a professional photographer by the book, but who offers to shoot you free of charge if you have sex with him. He promises that he will be safe, and discrete (and yes, there are photographers in the Tampa Bay market who do this!)

Obviously, the best photographer is number 3. Can you explain why?

Besides being able to show an investment into their photography career, and knowledge about what is appropriate for modeling portfolio photography, ethics also need to be considered.
For modeling portfolio photography, the following criteria must be used when evaluating photographers.

1. Make sure that the photographer has a real web site, a printed portfolio with modeling appropriate work, an occupational license, and references.

2. Make sure that the photographer has been in business for a while, and can show that they have built up a clientele. The longer that they have been in business, the better!

3. Make sure that the photographer is ethical.
Who cares if they are a member of a photography association or if they give to charity? We know of several Tampa photographers who have stolen content off of Independent Modeling, Tampa Bay Modeling, and Aurora PhotoArts. They plagiarize our content, and pass off our information as their “advice” and experience.
If you see any of our content on the web site of any photographer, please contact us about it. If they steal from us, what is to stop them from ripping you off, too? Do you want to go to the source of that information and experience, or do you want to sell yourself short by settling for a third-rate, counterfeit knock-off?

4. Make sure that the photographer knows what they are doing. Ask them questions. Make sure that their experience backs up what they tell you. If they show you a bunch of nudes or “sexy”
modeling pictures in their portfolio when you are in the market for a modeling portfolio, use caution. If they tell you that you need sexy, or nude, pictures in your modeling portfolio, walk away. Such photographers either do not know what they are doing or they are trying to exploit you. Either way, they are not good for your modeling career, and won’t be able to give you the modeling portfolio that you will need.
Likewise, if the photographer shows you a bunch of wedding photography pictures, or portraits of people, they probably won’t be able to give you the pictures that you will need for your modeling portfolio.
Make sure that the photographer can show work in their portfolio which is relevant, and appropriate, for modeling portfolios!

Which brings us to the main way that photographers exploit models.
Remember that pictures are permanent, and once taken, that you can never undo, or erase, them. We know of many models who have nude pictures all over the Internet, or pictures of them in “sexy”, provocative poses, and it has crippled their modeling careers!
If you are a new model, you have no business attempting high risk modeling. High risk modeling includes, but is not limited to, glamour, boudoir, nude, risque, modeling in skimpy bikinis, or modeling in provocative poses. These are specialized fields of modeling, and because of the risk, it is for experienced, professional models only.
Additionally, the best models have a wide range of looks which they can obtain. The best models are chameleons, and this flexibility in looks makes them marketable for a variety of different modeling jobs. AVOID anything which limits your range of looks!
New models should avoid anything which can limit their looks which includes breast implants, cosmetic surgery, and tattoos. Career-wise, this includes things that can limit your marketability and your eligibility for certain modeling jobs, such as nudes, glamour, and risque modeling work, ESPECIALLY if this work is photographed.
If any photographer recommends this high risk modeling work in the portfolio of any new model, thy need to be avoided. Find someone who knows what they are doing, and who cares about the integrity of your career.
If you are an experienced model, and you wish to specialize in high risk modeling work, you can do it, but remember that you will limit your marketability as a model. Once you do high risk work, you may never be able to work a mainstream modeling job again. Worse yet, if you do work a mainstream modeling job, and the company which booked you has invested in using your likeness to market their product or service, and they find out that you have high risk work out there which conflicts with their company image, you can end up sued!
Prevention is the best cure. Avoid high risk work if you want to maximize your marketability as a model.

Modeling FAQ - Return To The Beginning: Am I model material?

PUBLISHED 02/21/11

UPDATED 02/21/11






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