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Building a great modelling portfolio is a nightmare if you don’t know where to start. Don’t panic! Here are 6 types of shots you need to include in your modelling book:


1. Headshot

One of the first pictures in your portfolio should be a clean headshot. This allows the model to display her natural beauty to an agency or a client. It is important to make a great impression, highlighting your facial features and skin tone with light make-up and a nice hairstyle. Make sure to avoid heavy make-up.

TIP: Hiring a professional make-up artist will help you emphasise your beauty at best and increase your possibility to create the perfect modelling portfolio.

2. Full body shot

A full body and 3/4 length shots are also essential for showcasing your body type and proportions. Make sure you wear something simple and body-hugging like jeans and a T-shirt. Avoid long skirts or jackets that cover your curves. Layers could impede your client to see if you have the qualities they are looking for in an ideal model.

3. Swimsuit/lingerie shot

If it is against your religion or cultural beliefs, this is not a must-have shot. However, if you are over 16 and you are conformable to do so, then it’s a good way to show versatility and includes variety into your commercial modelling portfolio. When taking a picture in a swimsuit or lingerie, remember who is your audience. Be sexy but not sexual, especially if your goal is to sell something to a female public. This will show that you understand what your client wants from you.

4. Commercial/editorial shot

Once you have chosen your modelling path, you may want to include one of those shots in your resume.

For a commercial modelling career, you should display your ability to act in front of a camera. Creating a scene and expressing emotions like crying or laughing will help your future employers to understand if you are a great fit for a specific commercial or a catalogue. Besides, engaging in poses or expressions that promote a particular product will highlight your ability to merchandise. The rule is to be creative and have fun!

As with commercial modelling, an editorial model should show her/his personality and versatility.

However, editorial models represent a brand; therefore, they should express the brand’s ideas and style.

They also must have a great ability to tell a story throughout a picture. Adding a variety of shots with different poses (static or in movement), angles, expressions will feature your creativity and flexibility.

Nonetheless, an editorial modelling career is quite a prestigious landmark and clients are very selective when it comes to choosing their models. So, if you aim at a particular magazine, make sure to send them a “book” that consistently feature a specific theme that represents your client.

Having a set of tear-sheets is quite advantageous in this case since it shows you have been hired by a known brand and published in a magazine. The more tear-sheets you have, the greater is your chance to be represented by the best agencies and obtain the most lucrative jobs.

TIP: The middle part of your modelling portfolio is a place where you can exhibit your peculiarities. Indeed, if you have a particular skills, then this is the time to free yourself! If you have trained as a ballerina, having a picture where you do a split or stand on pointe will help your book to stand out from your competitors and enhance your possibility to get hired.

Smiling shot

This type of picture is essential, especially, for a commercial model. If you think you haven’t got a perfect smile, don’t worry! A client wants to see what they are working with and make sure to feature your outstanding qualities.

Closing shot

This is your last chance to make a great impression. Usually, people remember the first and the last part of a resume. Therefore, save one of your best work for last. Another great headshot is perfectly fine but make sure is different from the previous ones.

For more tips, check our blog next week to find out “HOW TO BUILD A WINNING MODELLING PORTFOLIO”.

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