The Model Handbook – The LifeStyle

     As a model, your professional life is never certain and although there are endless benefits to effectively being self-employed, you don’t have the security of a mapped out career path, a cosy office or a guaranteed annual salary. What’s more, your social life is just as flippant and plans can change at a client’s whim. Friends, partners and family can become tired of your lack of commitment and some may even appear unsympathetic. Remember, to many, you have a life they can only dream of; jetting off to sunny places and being paid to appear on magazine covers hardly instills empathy. Therefore, have a few tricks to help you avoid disappointing your nearest and dearest whilst allowing you to maintain a steady flow of work.
Book out
Firstly, book out with your agency well in advance as this not only ensures your availability for your special social occasion but also to prevents clients and your agent being messed around. By booking out weeks ahead of time you can even decline casting for jobs shooting on that specific date. However, this should be done sparingly as every casting is an opportunity to be grasped.
Of course, if a direct booking comes your way or a shoot date is moved, it can be very difficult to turn down a lucrative trip or campaign, resulting in last minute cancellations and the feeling you’re letting down loved ones. These decisions are always tough but as someone with an inconsistent income, it’s not always feasible to turn down jobs. Explain that and hope they see your point of view.
Tomorrow, tomorrow
Even making plans with friends on a daily basis can be tricky because booking confirmations tend to happen the day before the shoot. It’s hard not being able to greet your friends with a positive response when asked to attend something as simple as an afternoon coffee. Similarly, shoots can either finish well ahead of schedule or run over considerably making after work plans just as troublesome. Our advice is to simply communicate with your friends and whilst you shouldn’t spend the whole shoot day on your mobile, little updates to your best buds are always appreciated.
wine, drink, party, model

Just say no: alcohol affects sleep
Party people
There are yet more scenarios that could lead to problems: a night out on the tiles, for example. Not being able to drink on a night out is commendable, but even so, there can be peer pressure “join in”. Having to repeatedly explain the need to be fresh on camera for tomorrow’s shoot (or even the day after if you are working first thing Monday morning) can be tiresome. However, whilst some can function with a stinking hangover, 3 hours sleep and a Neurofen; models need energy and enthusiasm to produce great shots. Remember, it’s your reputation and bank balance on the line when on set.
Workaholic! But would they turn down this amount of money for me?
Over the years, a successful model will miss weddings, christenings, and birthdays to name a few. Assess each situation and take your current financials into consideration along with the photo shoot’s perceived prestige. Ask the question “Which is the most important long term?” Once you are more financially secure and established, you could perhaps put social events first, but even then, there are no guarantees in this world. Stay focused at a young age and that work ethic will see you through some hard times.
It’s just life
During your career you will have to make some difficult choices and you’ll often have to put professionalism before your friends. It’s something you learn to balance and the people close to you will gradually adapt, understand and accept it as the nature of your job. That constant feeling of always having to be available at a moment’s notice can result in you forgetting to let your hair down, so use the time with your friends wisely. Be patient with the people close to you and if they are real friends, they will come to terms with your professional situation. Make sure you don’t cancel unless you have to; your friends/partner will gain faith in you as a result and will forgive you when you have to let them down once in a while.

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