Sometimes, all it takes is one opportunity to change the life of your child forever.
In your quest to help your tot excel, succeed and prepare for the future, have you considered child modelling as a valuable option? From financial incentives to opportunities for socialization and connection, it can be a powerful way to position your child for achievement.
While there are certainly stories of agents discovering child models on a whim, most of the time, parents will take deliberate steps behind the scenes that lead to this partnership.
Today, we’re sharing our advice on how to get your child into modelling. Follow these tips and you could soon start sharing their radiance and beauty with the rest of the world.
Ready to learn more? Let’s get started!
Step 1: Make Sure Your Child Wants to Model
Think about it. When someone makes you do anything against your will, do you give it your best shot?
The same applies to child modelling.
If your child isn’t interested in this industry and doesn’t want to pursue a future in modelling, it’s best to waylay these plans, at least for the time being. Pushing the idea too much can lead to long-term resentment, and that’s never a recipe for success!
On the other hand, you might be referencing this article because your child is enthusiastic about the idea and wants to pursue it. If this is the case, it’s important to do a little reality check before moving forward.
While the perks can be great, make sure your child knows that modelling can also be hard, time-consuming work. If they’re still up for the challenge and ready to move forward, you can move onto the next part of the process.
Considering Personality Type
Although you might wish that your shy wallflower could blossom into a baby supermodel, it’s important to keep their personality type in mind.
In the end, both their mannerisms and their look will determine whether or not your child gets a modelling job. They should also have age-appropriate communication skills and be able to focus on the task at hand.
If your child is unwilling to laugh, smile or showcase their charisma, chances are slim that she’ll suddenly blossom in front of the camera. In this case, consider your motivation for pursuing modelling in the first place.
Of course, the opposite also holds true. Your child could be as extroverted as they come and still not be a great fit for the modelling world, and that’s OK. Even if it seems as though your child gave you the green light, remember to check back in often and make sure the interest is still there.
Sometimes, initial enthusiasm can give way to boredom as the day-to-day work sets in. In addition, someone who has no problem posing and performing in front of family members might later find that they feel uncomfortable or unhappy doing the same around strangers.
Rather than trying it out and hoping for the best, it’s smart to be as prepared as possible before moving forward. Find a recruitment agency that will take the time to speak to your child before thrusting him or her into the spotlight. If there’s genuine passion there, it will show (and vice versa).
Step 2: Agree on the Basics
Once both you and your child agree that this is a route you want to take, it’s important to make sure you’re on the same page.
You might be interested in modelling for kids because you’ve heard it can generate a substantial payout. At the same time, your child could be looking at it as a way to make friends and try on cool clothes. Unless your goals align, it’s likely that one party will end up feeling slighted at the end of the day.
Talk to your child about the outcomes that you want this experience to generate. Make sure these are agreeable and align with what they were thinking. Also, be sure to explain the actions that each goal will require.
For instance, do you have an older child who is looking at this as a segue into adult modelling? If so, he or she will need to approach the venture with a little more dedication and seriousness than a three-year-old playing dress-up.
The same goes for you as a parent. You’ll be the one behind the wheel, driving your child to auditions and modelling gigs. And, some of these opportunities could pop up at a moment’s notice.
If you work full-time or have a ton of commitments, this could quickly turn into a burden. Make sure you’re ready for the work you’ll have to put in, as well.
Step 3: Growing Thick Skin
We get it. Children are sensitive! Young boys and girls alike experience a range of emotions that can change in an instant.
At that age, even the smallest circumstance can snowball into a major meltdown. This is especially the case when you add judgment into the mix.
The unfortunate reality is that the modelling industry can be notoriously difficult for individuals who take rejection as a personal offence.
While no one wants to hear that they didn’t make a callback, it’s critical to prepare your child for that experience. And, remember to prepare yourself, as well.
The key point to keep in mind is that this is a business. That means decisions are made from purely a professional standpoint. No outcome, good or bad, is directly connected to your child’s talent or appearance.
Sometimes, a role or a gig is better suited for another individual and there’s one down the road that will be ideal for your child! In most cases, agencies pick models based on the specific size or age requirements that they need to fill. If they’re looking for a 2T baby boy, your 5T toddler girl won’t make the cut, no matter how dynamic she is.
Keeping that perspective can help your family weather the ebb and flow that will inevitably occur.
Step 4: Team with the Right Agency
A quick Google search on “How to become a kid model in Australia” will prove one thing: There are a ton of likeminded agencies out there.
The only problem? Not all are created equal.
To protect your child’s best interests, it’s important to do plenty of research. Read online reviews and feedback to create a short list of agencies that meet your initial requirements. You can also speak to friends and family members who have used a local agency in the past to hear how their experience went.
As you conduct this due diligence, remember to keep a wide perspective. No, one bad review or negative experience doesn’t mean a particular agency is bad. However, if you’re noticing a trend in one direction or the other, follow your gut and parental instinct.
Once you’ve narrowed your list down to three to five agencies, it’s time to delve a little deeper. Begin by taking a look around their websites and browsing their social media channels. Often, agencies will post stories and updates about their work online, and this can be a great way to gauge the way they do business.
After you complete your digital sleuthing, you can make your search more personal. Call each agency and schedule a phone interview or in-person consultation where you can learn more about their approach.
In addition to asking about fees, you should also learn the answers to the following questions:
- What is your process for signing kids to your agency?
- How many child models do you have on your books?
- What measures do you have in place to ensure my child’s safety?
- How much experience do your agents have in this industry?
- Can I see samples of your models’ work?
- Are there any other associated costs involved with joining your agency?
If an agency presses a membership fee before responding to these inquiries or divulging more information, continue your search in a different direction. Once they collect their money, these agencies could quickly turn unreliable, which can be heartbreaking for your child.
Before signing with any agency, try to connect personally with people who have partnered with them in the past. It’s helpful to learn firsthand experience from someone who’s already walked in your child’s pint-sized shoes.
Step 5: Create a Portfolio
When you’ve found the perfect agency to partner with, it’s time to get to work on a portfolio! Your child’s headshot is what the agency will use to land gigs and new opportunities.
This is another way you can separate the cream from the crop and find the best agency around. While most will be happy to put you in contact with local photographers who can take these portraits, a top-tier agency will take care of the logistics for you. Some will even include the cost of this session with your membership fee.
As your child grows, their face shape will change and other features will emerge. As such, it’s reasonable for an agency to schedule follow-up photoshoots to keep your portfolio fresh and accurate.
Step 6: Secure a Work Permit
In Australia, any child under the age of 15 must have a work permit to be employed. The employer (in this case, the agency) must file this permit with the consent of the child’s parents or guardians. Your child’s school may also have to approve the permit.
Before your child can begin work, this step has to occur. This applies whether the job is paid or unpaid. Each state will have its own specific guidelines to follow, so it’s best to check with your local government to make sure you know what to expect.
This permit is designed to protect your child’s safety and well-being, and it’s a necessary and important part of the process.
Keeping It Real, Keeping It Fun
While child modelling can expose your tyke to endless adventures and help them earn some serious big-kid cash, it’s important to remember how short this season is. At the end of the day, your child should love showing up for shoots, trying on outfits and learning from other industry mentors.
If at any point it stops becoming fun and starts feeling like real work, it’s time to have an important conversation. Remind and reassure your child that you support them no matter what, and give them the opportunity to take a step back if they want.
We’ll Show You How to Get Your Child into Modelling
Does your child adore posing for the camera, playing dress-up and flashing their pearly whites? If so, you could have a budding model on your hands!
Before you jump all in and commit to this journey, it’s important to understand how to get your child into modelling the right way. Talk to your child about their interest, understand the realities of the job, find an agency you adore and complete the necessary paperwork needed to land your first gig!
Looking to partner with the best child modelling agency around? That’s where we come in.
In addition to being the go-to child talent agency for some of the biggest brands in Australia, we’re also the longest-running child modelling agency in the country. We’ll walk you through every step of this process so everyone in your family knows what to expect moving forward.
For parents of children 18 and older, we welcome you to contact and learn more about our adult modelling agency, Hunter Talent. Let’s connect!