Fashion models promote clothing and accessories to fashion buyers and customers. They appear modelling items in fashion shows or in photographs for catalogues, magazines and posters.
Models may work as:
Show models - who work through an agency. The agency takes bookings from clients who need models to display clothes at fashion shows. They might also work at fashion exhibitions, walking around to showcase clothes to visitors, and could demonstrate or display non-fashion items, such as cars or furniture, at product launches and exhibitions.
Photographic models - who are photographed in the studio or on location. Models follow the photographer and stylist’s directions, holding poses or facial expressions. Only a few top models work in high-fashion women’s magazines; more opportunities exist modelling clothes for mail order catalogues, advertisements, newspapers and posters. With experience, they might work in TV or cinema advertising. Models with exceptional features such as teeth, hair and hands, can sometimes specialise in this particular work.
Fashion house models - who are used as live models while designers drape, cut and pin fabric and clothes on the model. They show finished clothes to buyers from shops and wholesalers, to fashion journalists and to individual customers. Models might show the collections at fashion shows, and might have other duties, such as greeting visitors or answering the phone.
There are no set working hours, but days can be very long.
Working conditions vary - models may work indoors or outdoors on various locations. Fashion models may be required to work in different types of weathers, depending on the type of shoot. The work is physically demanding as models spend most of their time on their feet. Depending on the type of job, you may also be required to walk in fashion shows too. They usually travel away from home for long or short periods, either auditioning or for shows and photo sessions.
To be a model you should be:
Models are mostly self-employed and get work through a modelling agency.
Competition is strong and work can be difficult to find even after being accepted on an agency’s books. There are very few opportunities for permanent positions with wholesale and retail fashion businesses.
There are more opportunities for models based in and around London. However, the number of agencies based outside London is increasing. Prospects improve by gaining experience, contacts and exposure, and building an impressive portfolio. Once established, higher salaries and more interesting assignments are possible.
Most models finish their career before 30, although older models may be needed for specific assignments.
It may be possible to move into related areas, such as running a modelling agency, fashion journalism, or sales and marketing.
If you would like to know anything about Fashion Model that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.
Association of Model Agents
122 Brompton Road
Tel: 020 7564 6466
(Please send an SAE for information)
Alba Model Information
31 The High Street
Tel: 0871 717 7170
Northern Ireland School of Modelling
954 Antrim Road
Tel: 028 9443 3626