If you’re like 99% of parents, then you’ve probably daydreamed of seeing your kid’s face on a billboard or watching them star in a commercial on TV. It looks so easy, the money’s probably good, and besides, your kid is the cutest ever.
Unfortunately, getting your child into modelling isn’t quite as easy as you might expect. Both parent and child have to put in their fair share of work which is often the biggest stumbling block for aspiring young models.
You see, it doesn’t matter how much you want your child to be a model, they have to want it for themselves.
So you need to ask yourself this question first…
Does your child really want to be a model?
As an agency with decades of recruiting child models under our belts, there’s one thing that we’re sure of; kids that are pushed into modelling NEVER succeed and those who are genuinely interested have the best chance of success.
This is why at Bubblegum we always interview kids before signing them up. For us, it’s just as important to gauge a child’s enthusiasm for modelling as it is to see how they perform in front of the camera. In fact, we’d even go so far as to say it’s more important.
So talk to your child and make sure they understand that although the rewards are great, there will be hard work involved. This means that they’ll need to follow instructions, and perhaps even wear some clothes that they don’t like (yes, that has been an issue before!)
Once you’re sure that you’re making the right choice for your child, then it’s time to set the ball rolling.
Below we’ve outlined a few steps on how to get your child into modelling.
Set your goals
What do you want your child to gain from this experience? Is it just about making a little extra cash for your child or do you hope that this will be a springboard from which they can launch a successful career?
Either way, you should talk to your child about this and make sure that both of you are on the same page. Kids who want a long-term career in modelling might have to work that little bit harder so again, make sure they understand that it will take some effort to achieve their goals.
Prepare your child for reality
Rejection sucks. We hate it, parents hate it, and we’re pretty sure the kids hate it too. But the truth is that it’s an aspect of the industry that you simply can’t avoid.
Prepare your child for rejection by making it clear to them that not every role they audition for will result in a job and that this is in no way a reflection of their talent or looks.
And parents, it’s just as important for you to remember this too. Sometimes a photographer or casting director has something very specific in mind. If it’s not your child, don’t worry; there’ll be plenty of other opportunities.
Find a reputable child modelling agency
There are plenty of child modelling and talent agencies out there so finding the right one can be tough.
Do your homework on each agency and take advice from friends who may have used agencies before. You can also check out some reviews online or in parenting forums but try to keep an open mind. One bad review doesn’t mean the agency is untrustworthy.
Call those that you think might be a good fit and have a chat with one of their agents. Make sure to ask about fees and their process for signing up kids. If they’re eager to sign you up over the phone, then be wary. Agencies that do this usually have hundreds of kids on their books, and the chances are they’re just after a signing up fee.
Create a portfolio
Once you have found an agency that feels right, it’s time to get your portfolio sorted. It’s important to note that agencies will require a professional portfolio as this is what they will use to put your child forward for jobs.
Most agencies will have a few local photographers that they can recommend, but the really good ones (that’s us!) will arrange your portfolio shoot for you. These shoots can set you back hundreds of dollars so at Bubblegum we go one step further and include your portfolio shoot in your membership fee.
Support your child
Everyone needs a little support now and then, and this is especially true for kids. As a parent, you’ll want your child to see that you’re just as invested in child modelling as they are. So practice posing with them, help them with their smile, and above all else always be ready and willing to talk to them about their auditions and jobs.
You should also be their number one fan and their cheerleader. Having you supporting them in this way will boost their confidence and as a result improve their chances of landing a role.
Most important of all you should always make sure that your child still has time to be a child. Don’t let them miss out on the regular stuff that they love doing, and even the stuff they don’t love like homework (they’ll love you for that). But above all else, they need time to have fun.
If you and your child are serious about child modelling, then why not apply now to Bubblegum. Just fill out the application form, and we’ll be in touch. You never know, this could be the start of an amazing journey.