Different agencies will have different particulars in mind, and there might be different requirements depending on the project, but here are some general guidelines that can help.
For the most part, slender and tall are still the two qualities that rule the catwalk. That’s just the way things are—the industry will project the ideal body type that makes the clothes look good. One doesn’t have to be reed-thin or well-built, but looking at models dominating the catwalk at fashion shows or plastered on spreads in magazines should provide a fair idea of what the industry wants.
A great physique surely helps, but success in the industry also lies in knowing one’s body—from knowing one’s angles to having full awareness of how to work one’s body, these are all vital tools that will help an aspiring model get bookings.
This attribute can be taken in two different ways: there’s attitude on the catwalk or in front of the camera, and then there’s attitude behind the scenes. Attitude while doing the modeling work per se involves personality and projection, the kind that best reflects the brief and shows off what one is modeling for.
The other type has to do with how the model goes about his or her business while preparing to go onstage or when dealing with the different production people. Things like coming on time and keeping up with multiple commitments are some of the things that agencies will expect models to be able to do on a consistent basis, because these will show just how reliable and dependable a model is.
In order to pull of the most stunning and the most out-of-this-world articles of clothing, it’s definitely important for models to not just work the shoots or fashion shows—they have to live and breathe fashion. This entails wearing clothes that reflect your fashion sense, and even if they don’t really look like something normal people would wear, the important thing is to be able to pull off the look.
There’s really no easy way to describe it, but agencies will look for that special thing that sets a candidate apart from the rest of the wannabes. It can be a physical feature that’s just too appealing, a particular quality or attitude you exhibit. Call it uniqueness, if you will. This is all up to the agency’s preferences and requirements, so it’s not going to be that easy to pinpoint. You’re going to have to bring the whole package—and then some—to get agencies to notice.
It’s not easy to land bookings, especially if you’re still new to the modeling industry. Of course, if you know beforehand what is required of you and you know you have what it takes, then landing a spot with an agency should be just a matter of time.