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Types of Modeling  

OK, to quote Derek Zoolander, you’re totally great-looking. So now what? Being a model means a lot more than just standing around looking beautiful. To be happy and successful in your chosen career, you need to find the specific type of modeling that’s right for you.

If you are going to make it as a model, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the following types of modeling work:

Runway Modeling

Without a doubt, high fashion runway modeling is one the most glamorous (and rigorous) types of modeling. Runway models generally possess a very particular body type (long legs, fierce walk) and have developed their own signature style of “working the catwalk”. While you’re likely to see crossover with other types of modeling, the runway model is a truly unique animal. Runway models begin their careers at local fashion shows – with the best of the best moving on to international events such as Fashion Week in New York - where models can earn thousands of dollars per runway event.

Quick tip for success: Watch footage of the greats! Take some time every day to watch footage of top models walking the runway. Study how they carry themselves. Use their established styles to help craft a walk that is unique and your own.

Commercial Print Modeling

If you have ever seen a 600+ page issue of Vogue, you have a good idea of why there is a constant demand for fashion print models. Simply put, there’s almost no limit to the number of apparel companies spending large amounts of money on their print advertising campaigns. Successful print models not only master a variety of looks, but also have a wide range of emotions and body positions that can call up on a moment’s notice as the job dictates. Print models are able to evoke strong emotions in two dimensions because of these skills.

Quick tip for success: A great portfolio goes a long way in the commercial print realm. Models who have a selection of beautiful and unique photographs at the ready are most likely to wow the client and get the job. Be sure and fill your book with photos that go beyond the standard head shot. Show your creativity!

Commercial Catalog Modeling

Catalog marketing affords the greatest opportunities for models of different heights and sizes. Since every store or clothing line appeals to a different demographic, the standards set by the rest of the modeling world are a bit more relaxed here. You still need to look and feel great, but there is a little less emphasis on the concept of perfection.

Quick tip for success: When creating a portfolio, base your chosen shots on powerful, effective catalog photography. Grab a stack of the best catalogs available. Then cut out the shots that you would like to create. Your portfolio should represent a “best of” compilation of shots in a variety of clothing styles and poses.

Swimsuit Models

Female swimsuit models are less likely to be the small-sized types that generally have success on the runway. In the swimsuit modeling world there is a greater emphasis on a woman’s curves – with physical fitness being of the utmost importance. Men’s swimsuit models are also asked to be in prime physical condition. Toned muscles and tight stomachs are the order of the day for men hoping to get the best available work as a swimsuit model. Many swimsuit models employ a personal trainer to stay in top condition throughout the year.

Quick tip for success: Show your dedication to the swimsuit modeling category. If you REALLY want to book swimsuit work, then create a portfolio with only swimwear-related photographs. This will show the potential client that you are not simply “dabbling” in this end of the business – but truly want to “own” the category.