If you are a regular reader, you know that both my boys do a little baby modeling. I often get asked how we learn about auditions and how we got started. Here are a few quick tips for breaking in.
- DO NOT spend money for professional headshots or pay any money AT ALL to an agent! Reputable agencies will never ask you for money, and one agency specifically asked for non-professional shots. It is standard for the agent to take 20% of the child's earnings, but that is taken AFTER the child has worked.
- When you send pictures to an agency, make sure the baby is looking directly at the camera, you see their full face, and they are not wearing a hat or holding any other props.
- After sending pictures to an agency, if you do not hear anything back after a couple months, try again. I was told by our current agent that they get thousands of pictures every month and only go through them once a month. When they do go through them, they are looking for something very specific. For example, the current blue-eyed, bald baby is getting older, so they need a replacement to send on calls for that "type" of baby.
A few things to know up front:
- It is not all "Toddlers & Tiaras". I have never seen fake anything on a child at any of the go-sees or jobs. All of the moms I have met are very down-to-earth and friendly, and most sets are very low key.
- Most print jobs pay $100/hr and last less than 2 hours, which sounds great, but you also have to factor in the time and cost of getting them to the job, the go-see, and sometimes a call back. Larger commercial or TV jobs require special permits, bank accounts, and much more time, but the pay is much better. And don't forget the agent takes 20%.
- EVERYTHING is done last minute. Most times we get a call in the evening about go-see the next day.
- We have never been able to keep any of the clothes or toys from a shoot. The best perks are the catering, but sometimes that is for the crew only.
- We probably have only seen 1/3 of the work JD has done. Sometimes a shot is used that he wasn't in, they re-shoot it at a later date, or they scrap the idea all together. Sometimes the shoot is for company materials and is never public or they are a foreign/out-of-state company. The agency doesn't know (or care) what the pictures are used for, and I am always hunting them down.
- You can always say no. One audition we showed up for wanted me to make JD cry. Another job asked if he could eat cake when he was just starting solids. You are always the boss of your baby!
|I searched for JD's face (or tush) in a Huggies ad for months before I tracked down somebody who told me these were his toes.|
|O had a ton of great pics in this wholesale catalog, but I can only see it online.|
I could write a book about the things I have learned from going to auditions and jobs, so please don't hesitate to contact me if you have any other questions.