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Photographer
Luke Ryan Photography
Posts: 580
Santa Monica, California, US


I have talked to alot of models and read alot of models portfolios and they often talk about how modeling is a "passion" for them.

However, it seems to me that most models really only engage in modeling for 1-3 years and then stop.

Photographers on the other hand seem to be into photograpy for life.
Jan 30 13 09:57 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
ontherocks
Posts: 22,425
Salem, Oregon, US


i think models are influenced by the men in their life. whereas with photographers if the woman complains he just dumps her and finds another one!
Jan 30 13 10:01 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
CBAPhoto
Posts: 261
Sparks, Nevada, US


It's a "passion" as long as someone is telling them how great they look and how wonderful their photos look. As soon as those aspects start to taper and the facts of modeling start settling in, mainly that it's actually a lot of work, their "passion" is easily swayed in another direction.

Their problem is two-fold: They're not fully aware of what "passion" really is, nor are they aware of what modeling really is.
Jan 30 13 10:04 am  Link  Quote 
Model
brianne
Posts: 279
OTTSVILLE, Pennsylvania, US


Well, it hasn't been even a year for me so I'm just guessing.
I would imagine it's because they find it more challenging than they expected. Or maybe other things in their lives took priority.
Jan 30 13 10:04 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Abbitt Photography
Posts: 11,582
Oakland Acres, Iowa, US


Many factors I'm sure.

Another that comes to mind is that creating images as a hobbyist probably has more long-term variety and challenges than continually modeling as a hobby.  While many models enjoy modeling, It think many aspire to make money at it, and if that does not come to be, the hobbyist perspective of it, just isn't enough.
Jan 30 13 10:04 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Cherrystone
Posts: 36,519
Columbus, Ohio, US


twoharts wrote:
i think models are influenced by the men in their life. whereas with photographers if the woman complains he just dumps her and finds another one!

Well that's a well thought out answer. roll

Jan 30 13 10:05 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Cherrystone
Posts: 36,519
Columbus, Ohio, US


Luke Ryan Photography wrote:
I have talked to alot of models and read alot of models portfolios and they often talk about how modeling is a "passion" for them.

However, it seems to me that most models really only engage in modeling for 1-3 years and then stop.

Photographers on the other hand seem to be into photograpy for life.

Unrealistic expectations and ill informed to begin with.
Life is a metamorphisis and then move on.
Some models have a short shelf life.
Shit happens scenarios

This "maybe" list could go on ad infinitum.

Jan 30 13 10:08 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Aaliyah Love
Posts: 113
Los Angeles, California, US


define "most models." Are you talking about girls from Model Mayhem? Most of my friends are models who have been making their income off of modeling for years, including me.
But if I did most of my "modeling" off of this website, I would of quit a long time ago also.hmm I hardly get any offers that don't involve some sort of sex or other creepiness, or people expecting me to work all day for next to nothing $. Or people who only shoot a few times a year sending me patronizing/insulting emails like "you need to lower your rate honey, NOBODY is going to pay that."
If I didn't know how else to book jobs, I'd be super discouraged too. Just sayin.
Jan 30 13 10:12 am  Link  Quote 
Model
DonnaLee
Posts: 7
Paducah, Kentucky, US


Many female models want so much from life and they start from where they get the most of what they want.
Many of them on here are so self conscious about them self all they truely want is someone to tell them how pretty they are.
They grasp at anyone who will give them attention and once the attention is gone they move on to a different "passion"

Modeling is an interest of mine. I did a lot for my friends in high school and I treat my modeling more as a hobby than a passion.
It's something I love to do, but I know the reality is since I limit myself this is nothing to get too serious with.

Once girls on here seem to realize that they aren't going to become "The Next Top Model", they give up and move on.

Don't get too disappointed in the ones that give up, focus on the ones that care
Jan 30 13 10:17 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Alivia Autumn
Posts: 610
Albuquerque, New Mexico, US


Luke Ryan Photography wrote:
I have talked to alot of models and read alot of models portfolios and they often talk about how modeling is a "passion" for them.

However, it seems to me that most models really only engage in modeling for 1-3 years and then stop.

Photographers on the other hand seem to be into photograpy for life.

Have you ever had a hobby as an adolescent, say late teens and completely changed your interest?  I think we all have.  Also modeling does have a short life span.  You have to maintain your physical appearance, just like an athlete.  A lot of high school athletes don't go on to college or pro because they have to make money and they don't make the cut.

Same thing goes for modelling.  Once it stops paying the bills you need to do something else with your time.

Jan 30 13 10:20 am  Link  Quote 
Model
DonnaLee
Posts: 7
Paducah, Kentucky, US


Aaliyah Love wrote:
define "most models." Are you talking about girls from Model Mayhem? Most of my friends are models who have been making their income off of modeling for years, including me.
But if I did most of my "modeling" off of this website, I would of quit a long time ago also.hmm I hardly get any offers that don't involve some sort of sex or other creepiness, or people expecting me to work all day for next to nothing $

I agree! I have already ran into multiple photographers that want more than taking portraits.
I found this site by pure coincidence, and I am happy I have. It's so discouraging to me to think so many people are willing to stoop so low just to see a beautiful naked woman.
Congrats on your success. Don't let anyone define who you are or who you should become smile

Jan 30 13 10:21 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Shon D.- Homme
Posts: 3,196
Virginia Beach, Virginia, US


Small Fruit Pits wrote:

Unrealistic expectations and ill informed to begin with.
Life is a metamorphisis and then move on.
Some models have a short shelf life.
Shit happens scenarios

This "maybe" list could go on ad infinitum.

This. Especially if you're talking fashion models. Every season, a crop of new 14-year-olds show up and are being groomed to take YOUR spot.

Jan 30 13 10:23 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
William Kious
Posts: 8,841
Delphos, Ohio, US


- They get tired of desperate photographers hitting on them

- They get tired of the innuendo and forced sexual tension

- Another party influences the decision to quit (sluggo, boyfriend, etc.)

- They fail to meet set goals (not being published, making money, etc.)

- They wind up with hundreds (if not thousands) of pictures

- They grow weary of travel

- They didn't find the butterflies and rainbows they were looking for

- Or a dozen other reasons
Jan 30 13 10:26 am  Link  Quote 
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Model
Damianne
Posts: 15,975
Austin, Texas, US


I'm gonna say there's nothing wrong with doing something and loving it, then stopping when it's not fun anymore.

Modelling stops being as much fun the longer you do it and the more you age.

Photography is ageless.
Modelling completely based on age and look.
Jan 30 13 10:26 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
J O H N A L L A N
Posts: 10,073
Santa Ana, California, US


Because every 'pretty girl' thinks and/or is told, she should be a model.
And sites like MM or right there to capitalize on unrealistic dreams.
Then reality sets in.
Jan 30 13 10:29 am  Link  Quote 
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Model
Damianne
Posts: 15,975
Austin, Texas, US


I like all the responses deciding the reason is probably that bitches are dumb and dudes are totally radical.

roll
Jan 30 13 10:34 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Sourcelight Photography
Posts: 249
BOISE, Idaho, US


A better question would be, "why do most of them start," the answer to which would be because it seemed like a glamorous idea at the time.  Take them at their word: people who start something because they're "passionate" about it, rather than because it seems like a business opportunity with income-producing potential, will rarely have the discipline to follow through when the inevitable lull in the fun sets in.  I don't particularly want "passionate" models; I want professionally ambitious models who understand commitment, professional communication, discipline, and such mundane concepts as schedules.  Modeling for a living is hard  work, and for most people hard work is not consistent with their idea of a passionate pursuit.
Jan 30 13 10:40 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Dan K Photography
Posts: 5,450
STATEN ISLAND, New York, US


Guys (most photographers) are horny for life and even if that tapers off as they get older still enjoy looking at pretty young women/men.

Not the same for models.
Jan 30 13 10:42 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
DAN CRUIKSHANK
Posts: 1,786
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada


It's harder to be a model. People criticize a photographers photos, no biggie, people criticize a models appearance, more personal. I'm sure it gets old after a while and stops being as fun.
Jan 30 13 10:43 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
William Kious
Posts: 8,841
Delphos, Ohio, US


Damianne wrote:
I like all the responses deciding the reason is probably that bitches are dumb and dudes are totally radical.

roll

Pffffft... and any one of the "dumb bitches" could turn each guy into a drooling idiot with a single turn of phrase, flash of skin or batting of eyes. wink

Jan 30 13 10:49 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Drew Smith Photography
Posts: 5,209
Nottingham, England, United Kingdom


I'll tell you one reason that plays a part, something I was made aware of only this week:

Absolute scumbag photographers on this site that send inappropriate MM messages, emails and video clips of themselves.

And I'm talking about photographers that have gained a models trust over time.

I'm aware of two of these individuals that have been CAM'd this week alone.
Jan 30 13 10:50 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
William Kious
Posts: 8,841
Delphos, Ohio, US


Damianne wrote:
I'm gonna say there's nothing wrong with doing something and loving it, then stopping when it's not fun anymore.

This. smile

Damianne wrote:
Photography is ageless.
Modelling completely based on age and look.

See, I don't completely agree with this... age is relative.

Jan 30 13 10:50 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
William Kious
Posts: 8,841
Delphos, Ohio, US


Drew Smith Photography wrote:
I'll tell you one reason that plays a part, something I was made aware of only this week:

Absolute scumbag photographers on this site that send inappropriate MM messages, emails and video clips of themselves.

And I'm talking about photographers that have gained a models trust over time.

I'm aware of two of these individuals that have been CAM'd this week alone.

ONE model accidentally sees me pick my nose on camera and I'm branded for life.

*sigh*

I do think the overwhelming perv factor plays a big part. I had the good fortune to talk very candidly with a model friend recently and I literally had NO idea just how pervasive the perv-ness gets. I literally had... no... clue.

hmm

Jan 30 13 10:53 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Miroslava Svoboda
Posts: 555
Seattle, Washington, US


Damianne wrote:
I like all the responses deciding the reason is probably that bitches are dumb and dudes are totally radical.

roll

big_smile

Jan 30 13 10:55 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Angel Dreams
Posts: 43
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Maybe they get tired of seeing the same offers in their inboxes over and over again.  After your 50th offer for a caution tape, angel wings or train tracks shoot you figure it's time to hang up your smiling eyes.
Jan 30 13 10:56 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Paige Morgan
Posts: 4,058
New York, New York, US


Models have a much shorter shelf life in most genres, aside from commercial print, and most of the work to be had on MM isn't in that realm.

Your viability for castings and assignments declines as you age. Additionally, the constant freelance hustle (the bulk of MM's models) can also burn folks out pretty quickly.

You have to market constantly, cast constantly, keep a punishing road schedule and often also coordinate your own styling, locations or teams. All the while, keeping your head up in the face of the rudeness and rejection that comes with any kind of modeling.


Additionally, if freelancing, you have to be 3x as good and 10x as reliable (along with having at least basic hair/make up/wardrobe styling skills) to be considered remotely adequate.

Photographers can keep shooting as long as they can still see. It does not matter if you are 16 or 60, gorgeous or ugly.....as long as you can shoot the images the client wants.
Jan 30 13 11:00 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
KMP
Posts: 4,778
Houston, Texas, US


Luke Ryan Photography wrote:
I have talked to alot of models and read alot of models portfolios and they often talk about how modeling is a "passion" for them.

However, it seems to me that most models really only engage in modeling for 1-3 years and then stop.

Photographers on the other hand seem to be into photography for life.

Accomplishment takes work. Most people are too lazy or just not interested enough to do the work necessary to achieve the the results and goals they dream of.

Throw in the frustrations of misconceptions unrealistic dreams and just bad info, then you get a WHOLE LOTTA people who move on to other things..

I know a number of photographers, amateur and professional alike that have also given up shooting.
It's not just limited to modeling.

Jan 30 13 11:03 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Retiredmodel
Posts: 7,884
Monmouth, Wales, United Kingdom


Damianne wrote:
I like all the responses deciding the reason is probably that bitches are dumb and dudes are totally radical.

roll

lol

I was thinking the same but that sums it up better than I could.


By many models I am assuming the op is talking about the new models that come on to MM and don't stick around. In that case yes it is probably true that their expectations of gaining paid work here are too high so they lose interest when the offers don't flood in. But there are probably also hundreds of photographers who have 'dropped out' of the site when that happened too; or stayed around being grumpy.

The site is useful for networking but photographic modelling usually only accounts for a fraction of paid work and at some stage people have to make a living. Again the same goes for photographers - hence they end up photographing products weddings or celebs whatever to pay the bills. So the majority of photographers here are only actually shooting models part of the time in their spare time just like many of the models are doing it part time. Likewise models often do other kinds of modelling work - promo, art, fit etc which pay better and it's more reliable and nobody ever asks you to do TF. So just because models may not be 'active' on MM doesn't mean they aren't in modelling. A false assumption: often the most inactive profiles are the most succesful models who end up agency signed etc. so don't bother so much here.

Or they simply pursue another career which does take off. In most professions the older one gets and more experienced one becomes the better the prospects and pay, or avenues that open up in other ways that provide fulfilment. Often in modelling naturally at some point age kicks in and the demand will be less as younger women are generally more sought after (often with little experience). No value judgement that's the way it is: shelf life.

So when I started modelling at the relatively old age of 26 and took up a well paid position, I nevertheless gave my main modelling gig up after a few years to pursue an academic career. That doesn't mean I gave up on modelling because I was no good or it didn't live up to expectations - it just means that I only ever saw it as a temporary state of affairs...an interesting diversion. I always aimed long term for a geographical related career so took up a doctorate as soon as funding became available. I am sure many models are the same just seeing modelling as a side career to their main and when opportunities arise in those fields they leave modelling behind or do it part time.


Rather like sports people can't continue past a certain age. They may become coaches teachers etc but likewise many models take up photography themselves or become MUA's, designers, actresses etc. hence staying in a smiliar field. So I think the op should consider that too.

Jan 30 13 11:03 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
KMP
Posts: 4,778
Houston, Texas, US


Paige Morgan wrote:
Photographers can keep shooting as long as they can still see. It does not matter if you are 16 or 60, gorgeous or ugly.....as long as you can shoot the images the client wants.

Very true..Thank GOD I don't have to live off of MY looks!!! LORDY!

Jan 30 13 11:05 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
M Pandolfo Photography
Posts: 12,116
Tampa, Florida, US


Luke Ryan Photography wrote:
I have talked to alot of models and read alot of models portfolios and they often talk about how modeling is a "passion" for them.

However, it seems to me that most models really only engage in modeling for 1-3 years and then stop.

Photographers on the other hand seem to be into photograpy for life.

1-3 years? I think that's very generous if we're using MM as the sample. I think a vast majority of models say that "modeling is my passion" until they realize they're not going to get paid signing up for MM. Then...not so much passion. And those profiles go the way of the DoDo Bird...usually in well under a year.

I often wonder, with all the numbers people here, if anyone has compiled the actual statistics. As just a guess, I'd have to say that more than half of the models who sign up for MM are inactive or have deleted profiles within a year.

Jan 30 13 11:08 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
M Pandolfo Photography
Posts: 12,116
Tampa, Florida, US


Damianne wrote:
I like all the responses deciding the reason is probably that bitches are dumb and dudes are totally radical.

roll

Umm..that's bitches BE dumb. Not "are" dumb. Sheesh.

Jan 30 13 11:09 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Caitin Bre
Posts: 2,199
Naperville, Illinois, US


I have done modeling for 22 years very off and on. Sometimes you just take a break for a few years at a time.
Jan 30 13 11:10 am  Link  Quote 
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Model
Koryn
Posts: 36,554
Boston, Massachusetts, US


- It gets very stressful, because it's a constant hustle, and the stress to conform to other people's expectations, often while inadvertently giving up a significant part of your own identity, wears on you.

- By late 20s, you are not as marketable, even if you still look very attractive, because people will just assume you're getting "old looking," and not even bother to consider you for projects.

- After you've been stranded in at least 3-5 major US airports, at different times, for weather-related emergencies, flight delays, and other miscellaneous concerns, the travel aspect loses some of its appeal.

- As you mature emotionally, and your perception of yourself as a creative person expands, you start to realize that a lot of the work you really *wanted* to shoot was impossible, because (a) you couldn't find people willing to shoot that with you (b) your look wasn't suitable for that type of work (c) you couldn't afford to pay someone to shoot it with you (d) what you want to create is simply outside of your accessible resource zone. All these factors result in a feeling of unfulfilled frustration, and you decide you're burned out.

- You reach a point where you want a regular paycheck, and a way to connect with "normal" people again, but modeling often requires complete immersion of oneself in the lifestyle, so you find yourself totally disconnected with the "real world." Re-entering it can be alienating, disconcerting, and require a lot of time and patience.

There are lots of reasons. Those are only a few.
Jan 30 13 11:11 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Looknsee Photography
Posts: 21,375
Portland, Oregon, US


...  Models feel that their looks are fading?
...  Many photographers treat models like crap?
...  The images the models get aren't worth the effort?
...  They need paying work?
...  They get busy with other stuff?

Just guessing.
Jan 30 13 11:14 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Wynd Mulysa
Posts: 8,597
Berkeley, California, US


Luke Ryan Photography wrote:
I have talked to alot of models and read alot of models portfolios and they often talk about how modeling is a "passion" for them.

However, it seems to me that most models really only engage in modeling for 1-3 years and then stop.

Photographers on the other hand seem to be into photograpy for life.

Well, to me the obvious answer [though I don't believe there is only one] is that, after a few years, they are no longer getting work.  I for one used to model a lot more than I do now.  I didn't lose interest, but I got older.  I feel like photographers on this site search for models based on age, and often do not put in anything over 22 or 23.  I am 28 an regardless of if I look 22 or 23, those photographers will not see my profile.  And I do not feel okay about lying about my age.  But I did get a lot more offers for work when I was younger and less experienced than I do now, with thousands of shoots under my belt and a vast and versatile portfolio. 

So, in situations like this, it can be a combination of not getting any work--so not having new photos for that alone--and feeling discouraged about this and dropping out intentionally. 

Another thing I have noticed is that a lot of models turn photographers after a few years and model secondary to that.

Jan 30 13 11:14 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
testingphotography
Posts: 185
Seattle, Washington, US


My limited experience with models leads me to believe it is hard work! A good model must be fit, flexible and looking good at a moments notice; the photog can be tired, fat, hung over, in a bad mood, unshaven, out of shape, etc and still produce a good photograph. The model must be "perfect" and that requires constant watching of diet, working out, maintaining hair and nails. In addition they must run the gauntlet of drooling GWC's, rude pros, nasty art directors, casting calls and STILL maintain a positive attitude and winning smile.
If there is limited commercial return for all that work, it would quickly stop being fun and they stop modeling.
My hat's off to models, and I have really enjoyed the girls I've had the pleasure to work with from MM.
Jan 30 13 11:18 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Wynd Mulysa
Posts: 8,597
Berkeley, California, US


David Reams Photography wrote:
My limited experience with models leads me to believe it is hard work! A good model must be fit, flexible and looking good at a moments notice; the photog can be tired, fat, hung over, in a bad mood, unshaven, out of shape, etc and still produce a good photograph.

Also this.  Duh.

Jan 30 13 11:20 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Sophia Be
Posts: 6,353
Portland, Oregon, US


I can think of so many reasons, many already stated.

A few more I can throw in that having noting to do with boyfriends.

Having to stay out of the sun/wear long sleeves in the summer.

Constant up keep of hair, nails, skin, wardrobe.

Networking is very, very time consuming.

Most emails are guys hitting on you, or just wanting to chat (using the guise of a shoot), a bunch aren't serious, some want to push your limits or see what they can get in trade after you've already said no.

Naughty emails get old.

Photographers being inappropriate at shoots get old.

You have to travel at some point, which can be hard if you have children or other responsibilities.

Then you have cancellations or no shows (even worse when traveling)

And aging, that number does change things, even if you look the same.

And on and on and on
Jan 30 13 11:20 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Luke Ryan Photography
Posts: 580
Santa Monica, California, US


It seems like there is such a divide between models and their perception and expectations and photographers perception and expectations.

As a photographer I feel like everyday I can get better and learn more and be better and improve

However, it sounds like models feel the crunch of short career span due to physical appearance and kinda take the attitude that its "either right now or never".

For most it becomes never and they quit.
Jan 30 13 11:23 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Retiredmodel
Posts: 7,884
Monmouth, Wales, United Kingdom


Luke Ryan Photography wrote:
It seems like there is such a divide between models and their perception and expectations and photographers perception and expectations.

As a photographer I feel like everyday I can get better and learn more and be better and improve

However, it sounds like models feel the crunch of short career span due to physical appearance and kinda take the attitude that its "either right now or never".

For most it becomes never and they quit.

Not exactly - it means we pursue other careers and have less time for modelling; or we model more and more for those that pay well and regularly: designers, art institutions, promotion companies etc.
We still feel we get better and improve. But at some point we know there is a shelf life factor so we are often committed to other careers long term.

The ones that quit immediately generally didn't know what modelling entails and how to make a living from it. They were never models to begin with.

A great many models I know are also engaged in high flying careers or academic work - a great many models here for eg are doing degrees and masters and doctorates and see their long term career elsewhere, whereas the photographer likely sees it as his future. There comes a point where you have to ditch the modelling or do less of it. I can be a scientist at 60 but unlikely to be modelling so no way would I sacrifice the latter for the former. Sometimes however the photographer does it in reverse: he may take up photography after a succesful career/education elsewhere.

Jan 30 13 11:29 am  Link  Quote 
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