Fitness Model

How to become a model in Australia

So… you want to be a fitness model! You’re not alone, the fitness model industry in Australia is booming and fitness models are in high demand. However, just like any other niche of modelling, be prepared for a lot of hard work. In fact, you might be surprised just how much hard work goes into it!

Getting discovered
To work as a fitness model the first thing you need to do (just like any other type of model) is get discovered. You may wish to attend open calls or contact modelling agencies – however nowadays, many self-represented models are finding less traditional paths to starting their careers and building a following on Instagram, which then can lead to booking some big jobs. Other models also hold down second jobs as yoga teachers or personal trainers – which can lead to other opportunities in bikini competitions, bodybuilding competitions and other similar events. At these events, talent scouts are routinely lurking in the audience and looking to discover the next big name in modelling!

A day in the life of a fitness model
The day you become signed as a fitness model, that’s when the hard work really begins! Shoot days are gruelling and fun all at once and on days that you’re not shooting you may also be holding down another job like many other models, and as mentioned above. So what can you expect on a shoot as a fitness model? Like other models, expect an early start and a late finish. When you arrive at your shoot, hair and makeup will take a good couple of hours (although fitness models are often portrayed hard at work exercising, it’s still imperative that they look attractive and beautiful on camera!)

Following that, you’ll visit wardrobe and then before you know it, you’ll be on camera! As a fitness model, a shoot will usually inform performing some sort of exercise and unlike other sorts of models who may simply stage activities, you’ll likely actually be performing the exercise – this may mean that your days will be very physically taxing and you may get sweaty and require multiple touch ups during the day.

Plus aside from the physical challenges you’ll face, many fitness models also face the self-esteem challenge of their body always needing to be camera-ready.  Needless to say, if you’re a fitness model, you’ll need to take great pride in your physique and absolutely love exercise! Even so, the constant comparison and rejection that is rampant in the modelling industry can take a mental toll so it’s important that you have a thick skin and develop confidence. After all, just like other models, although your body is one the of the biggest parts of your livelihood, having a great personality will also do you huge favours.

Remember as well that as a fitness model, it’s not simply about looking stronger than other people… you must also be stronger. The long hours of shoots and the exercises you’ll repeatedly perform require you to have great endurance.

But, although it’s a tough line of work – fitness modelling can open up some incredible doors for the rest of your career. You’ll meet a lot of interesting people and if your passion is fitness, fitness modelling can open up doors to personal training, gym instruction and other lines of work that you might not have considered. If you’re a fitness model on Instagram, you also have an invaluable opportunity to provide great content that not only shows your passion, but helps and inspires other people to  become fitter and healthier too… what a great chance to leave a positive impact on the world around you!

Fitness models also frequently find themselves being offered television appearances and other speaking opportunities, which is great for skyrocketing your image.

In summary, if you want to become a fitness model…
Our number one piece of advice? Make sure to take care of your body and always remember that although it’s part of your job to look a certain way, it’s not all about the aesthetics. As they say, if you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life. And modelling is hard work so to be a successful fitness model, if you love what you do then your passion for fitness and the modelling industry will always show in what you do.

Just like any other model, also take care to build a strong portfolio that shows your versatility and if you would like to be agency represented, you’ll need to get out there and network!

But, however you choose to model (whether agency represented or freelance), this is ultimately your career and in a sea of fitness models – you need to stand out, so be creative with your portfolio and let your personality shine!

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Spotting a Scam

How to become a model in Australia

Considering becoming a model? Unfortunately, as the modelling industry in Australia (and indeed, internationally) is largely unregulated, there are many scammers and scam agencies who seek to rip off and profit from the hopes and dreams of young, aspiring models.

Here are the four biggest scams to watch out for and how to spot them:

Scam #1: The Fake Agency
Beware any agency that claims to work outside of Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm! This is when most legitimate agencies work and many agencies that ask models to attend after hours castings, open calls or talent reviews are scammy. Be sure to double check their license from their website or researching their business name, as all agencies must be licensed. And, at the agency, be aware of your surroundings and what’s going on around you.

Scam #2: The Photoshoot Scam (THE most common modelling scam!)
A photoshoot scam will make its money by sending models to photographers on staff to shoot expensive photos (or by taking the photos in house and charging a fee). Be suspicious of any agency that wants to force you to shoot with a particular photographer, as there’s a chance it may be a scam. A legitimate agency will always give you a testing list, or a round up of good photographers that you can pick and contact at your own discretions.

Scam #3: The Online Portfolio Scam
The Online Portfolio Scam sees online modelling agencies attempting to sell budding models their online website – that is, models pay a fee (yearly or monthly, usually upfront) to host an online portfolio with the agency with the promise that the more they pay, the more work will come their way. This sadly isn’t the case and these sites make their money by taking your credit details, not by booking you legitimate work. Many models will never see any work come from these paid portfolios.

Scam #4: The Parent Scam
All parents think their children are adorable, but sadly many scam agencies will prey on this. Talent agencies that charge exorbitant fees and make big money after you’ve paid for your child’s photoshoot sadly are all too prolific these days, capitalising on parents desires to make their children famous. Often, these agencies will have a stall at children’s expos and conventions. For example, the US-based Premiere Group claim to be “the leading global specialists in launching young talent” and frequently host “evaluation” sessions in Australia and abroad that claim to give young people a foot in the door to working in the very lucrative entertainment industry. However, internationally, Premiere Group has come under extensive fire for hard sells, very high fees and low return.

Spotting a reputable agency is easy – so long as you do your due diligence and research any potential agency that you’re considering signing with before you sign on the dotted line. Any reputable agency in Australia are unlikely to conduct mass recruitment sessions or make excessive promises.

Our number one tip is this – if you ever feel like an agency is fishy, suspicious or you just get a strange vibe from it… trust your gut. At the end of the day, there are plenty of agencies in the world that are legitimate and would love to have you on their books, so don’t risk your reputation or put yourself in harms way. There are better ways to build a portfolio than to compromise yourself with dodgy dealers!

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How Much do Models Earn?

How to become a model in Australia

From the outside, a model’s life looks very glamourous with expensive clothes, makeup artists, jet setting across the globe, beautiful photoshoots and parties every week.

The reality can often be different, though.. and it’s a reality that you need to be prepared for if you wish to break into the modelling industry! This article is not to discourage you but instead to make sure that you’re prepared for the work ethic that you need, as many potentially great models have been discouraged and given up when they realised that “the model life” wasn’t as instantly abundant as they thought it would be.

In reality, modelling is hard work and long hours and especially for aspiring models, the pay isn’t always as high as you might assume.

So, how much do models earn in Australia?
Working on an editorial shoot, models are paid a day rate. The average day rate for an editorial shoot in Australia is $180. If you’re a self-represented model this goes entirely to you however if you are represented by an agency, they will take a commission (which can vary) for referring the job to you. An average agency commission can be around $80 out of a $180 day rate in Australia, which leaves you with $100 for 6-8 hours of work.

This seems very little… however, the day price of an editorial shoot is the same regardless of whether you’re a rookie model on her first shoot or a seasoned pro like Miranda Kerr.

As most experienced models will tell you, models take on editorial work cheaply at the start of their career as that’s one of the easiest and fastest ways to build up a portfolio (which you’ll need to get you most other forms of modelling work). For models who set their sights on advertising jobs as the end goal, establishing a quality portfolio through editorial shoots is a great way to build up their portfolios quickly and then book some advertising jobs, where real money can be made.

For an advertising campaign, a model in Australia may be earning anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000 a day – depending on the model.  And that’s for a lesser known model… those who make it into the big time earn significantly more.
In 2017, Kendall Jenner was the highest earning model at $22 million, followed by Giselle Bundchen who earned $17.5 million. Prior to 2017, Giselle had been the top earning model since 2002 however, with social media influencer popularity rising, stars like Kendall Jenner are now overtaking. For many aspiring models who take to Instagram to rapidly build up a following, they may find their incomes rising along with their follower count (much like Kendall!

Other high income earning models are Adriana Lima ($10.5 million), Kate Moss ($5 million) and Taylor Hill ($4 million). Gigi Hadad earned $9 million and with 22.2 million followers on Instagram, her bank account and exposure grows each day. It was also reported in InStyle UK that Karlie Kloss at just 23 years old was earning roughly $300 for a single step on a catwalk.

Alongside earning big money by being booked for jobs, models can also earn a significant amount of money through endorsements. Aspiring models will need to work their way up by endorsing smaller brands first – but work hard, build your portfolio and you might just be discovered by a big brand!

And, interestingly, child models can also earn a considerable amount! In 2014 Fairfax Media reported that child models in Australia can earn up to $50,000 per year or up to $10,000 for a single job.

The opportunities and prospects are great, but it’s important to be aware of the pitfalls of the industry. Realistically, not every aspiring model makes it. Some never go as far as they’d hoped, others struggle to book jobs and for others, the pressure of long hours gets too much. Many aspiring models who struggle to make it may find themselves giving up on their dreams to pursue a day job with greater financial stability while for others, the thrill of competition and not knowing how great their next earning may be excites them.

Some models are also paid in “trade”, whereby they accept free clothes, jewellery and products as payment for their services whilst they build up a portfolio.

There are very few models who earn the big bucks – and although models can make a decent living, it’s crucial to make sure you’re getting into the industry for the right reasons and not solely chasing millions. Models are not on a salary or a regular wage and in Australia (and abroad), modelling is a largely unregulated industry. Being paid per job often means that you won’t be paid the big bucks until you make it big so if you’re expecting to get rich quick, you’re ultimately setting yourself up for disappointment.

It’s well known that at Fashion Week, unknown models can barely break even… however, if they have the right look that a brand is looking for, the exposure can be enough to skyrocket their profile and land them some very well paying jobs. Models looking to make some quick money will often book jobs directly with designers in the lead up to Fashion Week testing looks for the upcoming shows. For jobs like this, some models can make up to $1,000.

Models must also be friendly and personable – the industry can get a bad reputation as being catty, however many models will tell you that other models are lovely people. In fact, to save money, many models choose to live together in “model houses” where they split the rent and bills and can all share the experience of chasing their dreams whilst sharing advice with each other.

Of course, modelling is still a competitive environment though as everyone wants to book the best jobs!

To be successful, models must be hard workers, perfectionists and flexible to the needs to their directors/casting agents, as well as open to taking feedback to help them grow and improve (so that ultimately, they can book bigger and better jobs).

Ultimately, how much models earn will vary on the specific model type, the agent and the job itself… so models must be prepared for not every job to be the same.


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Modelling Classes

How to Become a Model

There is more to modelling than simply standing around looking beautiful, there is also a quite a bit of skill involved that can be developed over time or through lessens. Although no former training is required to become a model, many aspiring and working models do find themselves enrolling in modelling school to give themselves an edge over their competitors.

Modelling school can provide


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Doing the Research

How to become a model in Australia

Taking the modelling world by storm is no mean feat – in fact, it’s an incredibly ambitious career move that is certainly not for the faint of heart. As an aspiring model, you’ll need to develop a thick skin as taking feedback (and sometimes criticism) on board from your clients and agencies will become a part of life… this may seem harsh, but this feedback is what is going to help you grow as a model and ultimately, land bigger, better and greater paying jobs that will increase your profile and help you build a great portfolio.

Like actors, artists and musicians, there can be many years of auditions, casting calls, rejections, highs and lows. That’s why – before you start your dream – you need to make sure to do your research and understand the ins and outs of the industry so that you can make the most of the opportunities that come your way!

First of all, it’s important to understand that especially at the start of your modelling career, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Many models change niches over their career and some models decide that modelling isn’t for them. As such, we recommend keeping a second job at the start of your modelling career to ensure that you have enough money to pay your day to day living expenses without relying solely on sporadic modelling work. As it can take many years to break into the industry (if at all), you’ll need to be realistic about your initial income and the amount of work that it may take to “make your big break” in as a model.

Often, making it big as a model can echo the age old saying, “It’s not what you know but who you know”. Plenty of successful models have extensive connections to directors, casting agents, photographers, designers and other models; all of whom can help them work their way up the ladder as a budding model…. So, get out there and network!

Many models these days are also the children of celebrities, such as Iris Law (daughter of actor Jude Law), Kaia Jordan Gerber (daughter of model Cindy Crawford), Amelia Gray Hamlin and Delilah Belle Hamline (daughters of actress Lisa Rinna) and Gigi Hadid and Bella Hadid (daughters of TV personality Yolanda Hadid).

As such, understanding that it’s not just about looks but connections and personality also comes into play. It’s critical to learn early on that you will not always be the right choice for every casting, and that’s okay! You must be able to deal with this rejection and develop a thick skin. It can be easy to take rejections personally but remember, just because you are knocked back for a job doesn’t mean that you can’t/won’t be successful. It’s all contextual!

Also, sadly not everyone in the industry will have your best interests at heart even if they claim that they do. This is a harsh reality and one that many will struggle to learn (as it’s natural to want to see the good in people and, as an experienced model, take the advice of anyone in the industry more experienced than you) but you must be cautious. For instance, unethical photographers may take advantage of your lack of experience and try to charge you higher rates to take your starting portfolio shots. It’s also important to know about maintaining your health as a model… the modelling industry has a notoriously bad reputation for coercing models (especially young models or inexperienced models) to change their body shapes to fit the industry, but this can come at a cost.

Know and understand your chosen niche, your suitability for that niche and what you’re willing or not willing to do to be successful. Remember, changing your body shape drastically to suit the industry is not only unhealthy (and can lead to lots of health problems later in life) but also doesn’t guarantee you work as a model.
What will assist you to get modelling jobs is to be friendly and personable, work hard, network, be courteous and make the most of the opportunities that come your way.

Lastly, always ensure that you research your chosen agency before you sign up… google them, look for reviews and if possible, ask other models that are signed to their books for their opinions on the agency.

If something doesn’t feel right, then the agency might not be the right fit for you.

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