FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
GENERAL MODELLING QUESTIONS
WHAT IS A GRANDMOTHER AGENCY?
A Grandmother Agency is a Scouting Agency that allows a secondary agency to act as a Mother Agency to the scouted talent. A Grandmother Agency will primarily focus on scouting and development however will not be placing the talent. The Grandmother Agency will be doing a split commission with the mother agency.
WHAT IS A MOTHER AGENCY?
A mother agent oversees a model's career, usually the agency who started the model in the business. Their role is to place models with agencies around the world and guide their career while allowing the overseas agencies to obtain work for the model in their market. Book Management works with international clients and modeling agencies to place models overseas with other agencies. Any inquiries from international agents are directed to the head booker.
IS A MODELLING AGENCY AN EMPLOYER?
Book Management is not an employer. We do not issue T4s or W2s and we are not responsible for paying any taxes or other deductions on model's pay cheques. As a model you are entirely self-employed. It is your responsibility to keep an account of hours worked and the hourly rates you are to be paid. You need to keep records of your own taxable income and expenses. We strongly suggest you have someone with accounting knowledge guide you in the practice of self-employment.
HOW DO MODELLING AGENCIES MAKE MONEY?
As an agency, we take 20% of the model's income as our standard agency fee. this is our primary source of income. Only when a model works do we earn income. Income derived from workshops and promotional materials is limited so we can keep costs as affordable as possible for the model.
WHY DO MODELS HAVE TO BE SO TALL AND SKINNY?
The modeling business is based on the clothing designers' need to show their clothing. Each season, designers create collections of clothing to show to perspective buyers and fashion editors. The women’s collections are designed in standardized sizes according to their branding. Additionally, designers make one-of-a kind outfits to show on the runways; whichever model they choose to wear their clothing has to fit the one-of-a-kind outfit. Designers like male models to be 5’11 or taller and a 36 -42 suit size with a 31 average waist and typically, girls who model have to be 5'7 - 5'11 and have different size categories.
HOW DO I GET MODELLING JOBS AND WHAT DO I GET PAID FOR DOING A JOB?
First, Book Management is an agency who is the liaison between the models and clients. a client calls us to hire a model; at which point the booker suggests people or arranges for a casting for the client to choose the models they want to hire. then rates per hour and usage of the photos are discussed. if it is for a fashion show; a show rate is determined. The agency will determine the rates for the models. rates vary from job to job. higher rates or rate increases are indicative of a look, experience and usage.
CAN A PARENT TRAVEL WITH THE MODEL?
It is a great experience for parents to travel with their teen. It is an opportunity for the parent to not only get a first-hand look at the business of modeling overseas and meet the international agency staff, but also a prime opportunity to learn about other cultures and cities. Our parents who have traveled with their teens have had amazing trips to places like New York, Tokyo, Milan and Greece. It is up to the parents to cover all costs associated with their trip. the international agency will generally arrange for both parent and model to stay together at their residence or apartment, unless the parent chooses to make other arrangements.
WHERE DO THE MODELS LIVE WHEN AWAY FROM HOME?
Each agency provides accommodation for the models they represent in their city. Usually this is shared accommodation like an apartment. It may also be a hotel, depending on the city. Models from the same agency will share an apartment.
A BRIEF OVERVIEW OF CITIES OVERSEAS
Traditionally, the big markets for models were the cities that hosted the major fashion weeks, New York, London, Paris and Milan. However, over the past couple decades many regional markets have grown, and some of these rivals the originals in work, pay and even stature with the traditional markets.
Most notable are the Asian markets. Beijing and Tokyo are huge markets that attract many top designers and are bustling with work. Hong Kong has lost a little of its luster to mainland China but still has a lot of work as do Singapore, Bangkok, Taipei, and to a lesser degree Seoul.
In Europe, Berlin has come on very strong, Sao Paulo continues to be a growing fashion hub for South America, and you can’t ignore Dubai which is fast becoming another world class capital for fashion and another strong market for models from outside the area.
SOME OF THE BENEFITS OF MODELING OVERSEAS
- First there’s a ton of work overseas. New York does too, but it’s so competitive, and making money can be very challenging; especially for newer models.
- Most models amass a ton of tear sheets when working overseas. Print and magazines are still very popular in most other countries; you’ll walk away with a book that helps you get work almost anywhere.
- Most models can make a lot of money overseas.
- Lastly, it can be a lot of fun. You experience new places, make new friends, and the most cities are vibrant, beautiful and exciting places to live in.Height qualifications In Europe, most of the female models follow the same editorial guidelines as here in the States; they prefer models that are 5’10”, with exceptions down to 5’8 for special cases. However, in Asia, a beautiful girl who is 5’6 can be quite successful depending on the market. Although most cities are gravitating towards taller models
- Also, unlike Europe, Asia can be more forgiving regarding your book. You can be a fairly new model and get a contract to model in Asia if the agents there like your look.
- China: As the leading country for manufacturing clothing for North America and Europe, there’s a lot of work in China. The combination of having the range ready sooner there and lower production costs causes many U.S. and European brands manufacturing there to produce their catalogues right in China. The lines being marketed for the Chinese market commonly get introduced with runway shows and television commercials. This means a lot of work for models, especially catalogue and point of purchase materials.
- Thailand: If working in Thailand you’ll probably be doing a lot of television commercials and they pay very well. They love Eurasian looks.
- Taiwan: like the Thailand market they gravitate towards younger models and again, Eurasian looks are popular for television commercials and catalogues.
- Singapore: Singapore is not a big money market but a great market to get tear sheets and magazine work. You go there to build your book for the other markets. It’s a great place to start for many other reasons: It’s easy to get around, most people speak English, and it’s extremely safe and clean making it a great introduction to Asia.
- Japan: Japan is a very mature and competitive market. Only the best models with strong books get work there. They prefer younger models and if you qualify there’s a lot of catalogue and other work. Japan, most notably Tokyo is also the most expensive place to live in Asia and not a place to venture without an agency solidly behind you.
WHAT’S THE WORK’S LIKE IN ASIA?
The amount of work differs based on the time of year. During the busy season you can easily go on 5-8 castings per day! The work that pays the best is catalogues and television commercials. A good thing since that’s the majority of the work in most Asian countries! You may also do occasional runway work and occasional showroom jobs. Expect to stay busy. If not, you’ll probably get sent home. The working conditions are almost always good. Your agency handles almost everything for you. They arrange for a place to live, pick you up and drive you to your jobs, and feed you when working. They really want to make you happy while working there.
Across Asia, the culture demands respect and commonly men still dominate the business world.
As a female model Agents will want you to act cute, fun and feminine. You don’t want to challenge anyone, pout or act dismayed. It doesn’t go over well there at all. For the most part respect is given back, but you may not notice that in traditional ways. Communications are different; don’t expect someone in a position of authority to be willing to massage your ego. Some models get homesick, more so at first. However, there are always plenty of other foreign models living with you and it’s easy to make friends if you want to. The work ethic is also different. The days can be long, especially when doing catalogue shoots. It can take a little getting used to, but the good news is you’re working!
The key to enjoying yourself and dealing with things you aren’t accustomed is to communicate with your agent and your mother agent back home. We are constantly in touch with models we place overseas. Usually, it is good news and going over work, but I do deal with the occasional homesick model, and in some cases (thankfully not often), problems.
TIPS ON MODELING IN ASIA
The relationship of your U.S. agency with the foreign agency is extremely important: There aren’t many placement agencies that are connected with the right agencies overseas, having a good mother agent is important. You want to ensure you are being placed with the top agencies in Asia, it makes all the difference.
Before leaving overseas, get a Skype account and learn how to use it effectively. It’s a great tool to keep in touch with family and can dramatically reduce communication costs.
Always remember that being in a foreign country is different than being in the States. Communicate with your mother agent regularly about things good and bad and heed their advice. Because of the time change, email will be the predominate method of communicating.
Move around from market to market. Some models decide to stay in Asia years at a time, they work in different countries, not just to break things up, but the busy seasons can vary. Coming back to the States often can get expensive but moving from one Asian country to another is much more affordable. I highly recommend being open to working in Asia 6 months or longer if you decide to go.
If an agency REALLY wants a model to come to their market, they may offer a guarantee. Japan is best known for doing this. Guarantees are usually in US dollars despite the origin of the model or their mother agent. The guarantee is a model’s assurance he/she will make a certain amount of money during their term in the foreign market. The higher their guarantee, the more incentive the agency has to promote the model.
In most countries, the model is considered self-employed, and the agencies work on their behalf. This is the case in Canada. To be more plain, the agencies work for the models. The model is usually required to pay their own taxes in their own country. It is extremely important to keep track of your expenses and income. How honest you are is entirely up to you. We recommend you at least try to understand Canada’s taxes as they relate to modelling.
All models under agency representation have the option to utilize special documents known as modeling vouchers. This is a unique document that makes sure you receive timely payment. A modeling voucher is, fundamentally, a receipt that is marked by the model and the client after the model finishes a job. Modeling vouchers give you a breakdown of the job you’re doing, unlike a model release form.
Whether you’re doing a photoshoot, acting gig, or something else, you’ll be required to fill out a modeling voucher.
You should be able to print a pdf sample on the website.
If you are using vouchers, you should bring a modeling voucher to every job you are booked for. If the voucher is missing any information, neither you nor your agency can get paid, so make sure that you are familiar with all the information that must be filled out and double-check it before you leave. If your client has forgotten something, make sure they fix it because you may not have another chance to get in contact with the client again. Vouchers are filled out as soon as the job is over, and it’s very important to check and double-check that everything is filled out properly and in its entirety before signing the voucher. If you hand in a voucher that’s incorrect or incomplete, your agency will have to chase down the client to fix it, which really slows down the billing and payment process.
If you have a Modelling Voucher booklet and not a Pdf version, they usually contain carbon copies underneath that are different colors. Usually, the top one is for the client to keep, the second for the agency and the third for you to add to your records. If you run out of vouchers, contact your agent and let them know you need more. For the pdf version you can just make a photocopy of the filled voucher for agent and the client.
WHAT’S ON A MODELING VOUCHER AND WHAT INFORMATION WILL I NEED TO FILL OUT?
On a typical modeling voucher, you will see the contact information of your agency on the voucher. There should be room for you to put your name and signature, as well as an area where the client will fill out their company information, address and contact info. The voucher becomes a binding contract when the two of you provide your signatures, In fact, most modeling vouchers are branded with the model agency’s name and address, so you may not even have to worry about filling in those details. All you really need to do is read everything over and write your name and sign your signature. You should only fill your voucher out at the end of the shoot, when everything is wrapped up. Usually, the person you want signing the voucher is the producer on set. It is always good policy to have everything filled out and ready to go so when they get the paper in hand, there isn’t anything to do but sign.
The good news is that the client is responsible for filling out most of the details, including the company name, address and contact information, as well as the time you started and finished, the duration worked, the job details (such as the type of job and what role you filled), and the rate of pay.
WHERE DO I GET MODELING VOUCHERS?
You’ll most likely be issued a big book of modeling vouchers as soon as you sign your agency contract. Your agent will go over all the details and will tell you how to fill them out and who to give them to. If you run out of vouchers, your agent should have you come by the office to pick up more, or they may even email you a blank voucher so you can print your own copies. You should use a different voucher for each job. If you have two jobs lined up in one day, then bring two separate vouchers. If you forget to bring a voucher to your booking, contact your agent to send you one by email and print it.
On the Book Management website, you can print vouchers. Downloadable as a PDF.
WHAT DO I DO WITH A VOUCHER AFTER MY JOB?
After your job is complete, all you have to do is drop off your voucher with your agent or email them a copy. The voucher system isn’t imposed anymore however it is a good way of keeping track of your hours and rate Your agents will let you know where exactly to leave it. It’s best to submit your voucher immediately to your agency after your job is done. Hand over your completed voucher as quickly as you can- preferably within the same day to avoid any delays. After all, both you and your agent will want to get paid as quickly as possible. If you are unsure if your agent received your voucher, call your agent to make sure that they got it. Many agencies, especially larger ones, may be too busy and may not realize that they don’t have your voucher until days or weeks later.
APPLICATION FORM FAQ
MY SISTER/BROTHER/COUSIN/FRIEND WOULD BE PERFECT BUT SHE’S TOO SHY TO TRY SOMETHING LIKE
Unfortunately, no. If they’re going to become a model, they will have to participate eventually. If you think they have what it takes to get noticed, we suggest you keep encouraging or trying to convince them to apply.
WHAT DO I DO IF I DON’T HAVE PROFESSIONAL PHOTOS?
We’re not looking for professional photos. What we really want to see is fresh, natural snapshots of you that any friend or family member can easily take on their smart phone.
SHOULD I AT LEAST WEAR MAKEUP?
We want to see your natural look – clean, beautiful, and makeup-free.
No, we don’t have open calls.
SO I CAN REALLY GET DISCOVERED HERE?
Take a look at our roster and you’ll see our models truly do live and come from every corner of the world. Our online application process allows us to see the next great talent no matter where you are
Fresh faces are exactly what we’re looking for. In this business, being new can be an invaluable advantage.
There should never be any cost to you to apply anywhere.
WILL I HAVE TO DROP OUT OF SCHOOL?
We recognize your obligations to your studies and we always say modeling is a hobby until you finish high school. We take care to tailor schedules for all of our young talent around school vacations and summer holidays.
Unfortunately, due to high demand we aren’t able to reach out to everyone. However, if we feel you’re right for us we will surely be in touch. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t hear back from us. Remember, you might not be the right age or height, or it just might not be the right time. Believe us, things change quickly in this business so feel free to apply again in the future.
Please use some common sense. The internet is a great tool – however – it does allow people to masquerade as something that they are not. Anyone that is promising you that they are going to boost your career, make you famous, introduce you to all the right people, etc. – is NOT someone that you want to be dealing with. This business does not work that way. Ask anyone that contacts you via the web to provide you recent references or to contact your agent if you are already represented.