It is a true source of joy for parents to be told that their little one is adorably cute. It’s something to take pride in because such compliments indicate that they have this special ability to nurture a young human being who stands out.
But what some parents automatically get from declarations that their offspring is beautiful is that their child has an opportunity that is not necessarily available to others. Child modelling, for example, is one, and it is an opportunity to think about especially for strongly future-oriented parents.
Indeed, child modelling is worth considering if you are a parent and you want to save up for your child as well as tap into possibly lucrative opportunities for him or her. However, it is imperative to understand that the kids’ modelling industry requires so much more than just a pretty face.
As a parent, you have to brace yourself for the challenges that will inevitably come, and prepare your little one for the unusual dynamics of modelling. To help you with this, here are five of the child modelling career truths you should be aware of.
1. You need representation
Yes, your child is beautiful but you cannot expect modelling offers to just land on his or her lap. If you want a relatively easier way to launch your kid’s modelling career, you need to sign him or her up with a child modelling agency.
There are a lot of agencies to choose from and to secure your son or daughter’s future as a model, it is crucial to be meticulous about choosing an agency. These are the factors to look into when you are shopping for a child talent and modelling agency:
Look into the history, clients, track record, and feedback about the agency. You want to make sure that it is not known to operate in a rather dicey or disreputable way.
See if agency’s support personnel are knowledgeable about the industry and consistently helpful to their clients and talent pool.
It is always a huge advantage to have agents and other industry professionals who have been in the business for a long time. You can have the assurance that they can represent your child well and ensure your young one’s advantage in the business.
2. Professionalism is a must
It doesn’t matter if your child already knows how to read or count, he or she is expected to be ready to work by following simple instructions. This is the level of professionalism expected of a child model.
A good-natured child personality contributes a lot as well. So, if you have a moody child, work on behaviour training. A difficult child will hardly last in the highly competitive and demanding modelling industry.
3. It entails a “restricted” lifestyle
Your child’s good looks need to be preserved. This means certain activities can be big no-nos due to the risks of injuries that can lead to scarring.
This can prove to be frustrating for young ones, but it needs to be done if you are to preserve your child’s advantage. The restrictions can open their eyes to the reality that to be successful in achieving goals, certain sacrifices are required.
You need to uphold the responsibility of neutralising your child’s possible resistance and explaining the long-term value of the restrictions imposed.
4. There will be (a lot of) rejections
There typically will be more rejections than successes, especially at the start. This can be disheartening, more often than not, for the parents more than the child.
But to succeed in the business, you all just have to remind yourself that you cannot take anything too personally. You just need to move on every time your child gets turned down for a job. You also need to reassure your child that not getting a role or job does not mean there is anything personally lacking in him or her. Eventually, a perfect fit of a job will come around.
5. You will have to invest more in your child
Your initial intention may be to save up for your child’s future using the income from modelling but you will be using more of that money (and also your personal money) to establish your child’s career.
This is particularly true when things really work out and you can see that your child can be in it for the long haul. You may end up signing your child up for music, dancing, swimming, horseback riding, etc., as all of these will end up in their resumé or portfolio.
But if you still want to save for your child’s future, to cover college education or investments to further secure them in their adult years, learn how you can manage his or her income wisely.
Get some advice from financial experts (which you can have access to through personal banking services that include wealth management) so you make the right investments for your child’s career and, more importantly, for his or her future with or without an acting or modelling career on the side.
These five truths about child modelling can help you deal with the typical challenges that come with the “profession” you are considering for your little one. Hopefully, with these, you can avoid the many mistakes parents tend to make in handling their little one’s modelling career.
Adam Jacobs is the Managing Director of Bubblegum Casting, the longest running agency specialising in babies, children and teen talent in Australia. Bubblegum Casting works with some of Australia’s biggest brands, media properties and agencies to secure talented children to work in Television, Film and Modelling roles.