I think just about every model has a love/hate relationship with the industry. Probably the most frustrating thing about this business is that there are so many do’s and don’ts that you’re supposed to follow and yet there are still those exceptions to the rule that make things very unfair.
For example, I had a casting in San Francisco at 11:00am for a hair show. I showed up early and waited patiently with the other 30 models who showed up. The people holding the casting were presenting a new line of hair care products and were looking for models to showcase the new brand.
Luckily, they weren’t planning on cutting or coloring. The lady in charge thanked us for showing up early and on time and explained that they would be pulling girls up in small groups to evaulate their hair and that the rest of us could relax and wait until we were called.
The first group was about 7-9 girls with really long hair down their back. One of the stylists explained that some of the styles they needed required a lot of length. While they brushed, braided and played with the girls’ hair, the rest of us talked amongst ourselves.
Three girls walked into the casting 10-15 minutes late but were still accepted into the audition and were added to the group of girls being considered. While I and a number of the other girls thought it was crazy for anyone late to be allowed to participate, we kept our mouths shut. It is a business after all and you can’t let your emotions get the best of you.
After about 15 minutes, the lady in charge came to the rest of us and said, “Thank you for your time ladies, the casting is over and we have found our models.” Needless to say, there was a moment of shock, confusion and utter silence. Model to model glanced at each other as if to say, “Are they for real?” But as is custom, we gathered our things, smiled politely and thanked them (of course, all of us were cussing up a storm on the way out of the building!). The three girls who came late got the gig and two of the three girls had worked for the stlylists before. Goes to show that it is definitely who you know.
Of course I was very upset, as were the rest of the girls who wasted their time sitting in a room with each other while the stylists made their pick without giving any of us a chance. Honestly, if they only wanted girls with super long hair, that is what they should have told our agencies. To reward someone who is late to a casting is beyond me and I didn’t think it was fair that they openly announced which models had worked with them before (who ended up making the cut).
In my opinion, it was a waste of time and effort but that’s what happens. Life isn’t fair and neither is modeling. It just goes to show that no matter how well you follow the rules, there will always be instances where those who break them get the gig…but that doesn’t mean that you should do the same. It may not pay off right away, but stick to your good habits and eventually you will be rewarded. For every missed opportunity, there will always be something bigger and better.
Modeling 101 – A Model’s Diary
By Dania Denise