How to Tell If Someone Is Serious About Shooting

This article is written by a member of our expert community. It expresses that member’s views only. We welcome other perspectives. Here’s how to contribute to MM EDU.

This advice is geared towards new models that use social networking sites like Model Mayhem to find people to shoot with. If you are new to Model Mayhem, you will get messages from other members about setting up a shoot. Here are a few things to consider to determine if they are “for real”.

Photographer: Shimon Karmel, Makeup artist: Nightshade Beauty, Hair stylist: Eriko vmx

1. They do not use text-speak

The original message should not read like, “Hey u. I luv ur work. Want 2 shoot sumtime?” That means that the person did not take the time to send a proper message. This translates to not caring, which is generally the attitude that they will take towards your shoot.

2. They give a description of the concept or project

They don’t have to write a long essay about every aspect of the shoot. However, they should at least state if it requires nudity, special props/wardrobe, elaborate makeup, or its intended usage. How can you say “yes” or “no” if you don’t know what is required?

3. They have worked with many Model Mayhem members (if they have been a member for a while)

If someone has been on Model Mayhem for four years, has only worked with five people, and only has four photos (with no website/other portfolio links), then chances are they are not serious. They might rarely shoot, have flaked on shoots, have not been active on Model Mayhem, or have some other reason for having few shoots.

4. They are up front about compensation

Whether looking for TFP or wanting to hire you, serious people will let you know what they want. If they want to hire you, they tell you how much they can spend and what they are willing to pay. If they would like to do TF, they also let you know up front.

5. They do not promise big things

The only things that are guaranteed are death and taxes. Even if you work with one of the best shooters or models, you are not guaranteed publication or fame.

6. They do not write anything sexual

That may indicate an agenda beyond wanting to shoot.

I hope these points will help you spot the B.S. when members approach you to shoot. If you have something to add to this list, please do so in the comment section. If you disagree with me, I would love to read what you think.



AvivaH has been a model for 2 years and track athlete for 6 years. She lives in Victoria, BC, and specializes in fitness, promotional, bikini, lingerie, and commercial modeling.

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