Everything You Need to Know About Commercial Modeling

Are you interested in becoming a commercial model, but are unsure of what it entails? Perhaps you’re concerned about the competitive nature of the industry? We’ve got you covered with an in-depth guide including all aspects of the commercial modeling world.

What Is Commercial Modeling?

Commercial modeling is a niche that spans across a wide area. Advertisements (both print and television), magazines and catalogues all fall under the commercial umbrella. Commercial brands hire models to promote their product to their target audience and therefore require talent that fits their vision.

Commercial models are required for campaign imagery, online product shots, billboards, TV advertisements and product packaging for fashion, beauty, technology and homeware; the list is endless, which means the type of models required is also vast.

Unlike high fashion, models in commercial modeling are usually more girl-next-door. Requirements are less strict as brands are looking for a model who connects and/or reflects with the general population.

Since the modeling industry has more readily embraced diversity, the commercial niche does include plus size, petite, fitness and body part modeling. However, these niches remain less in demand than the stereotypical commercial model.

The Requirements For Commercial Models

Typically, a female model must possess even, natural features, nice hair and a great smile. Men are charming, handsome and chiselled, though not overly muscular.

Most brands look for models who are accessible to a wide audience. There are some exceptions to the rule yet, generally, a natural and desirable look is sought after.

  • Height. There is less pressure to reach the heights that top fashion demands. Female commercial models are usually required to measure around 5’6”, whilst men should stand at 5’11”. Of course, petite clothing brands will hire shorter models.
  • Gender. Both female and male models are required by commercial brands to promote their products. Gender fluidity is now recognized in the industry, but only a select few brands are featuring transgender models in their campaigns currently.
  • Physique. A slender, toned body shape is most sought after in both male and female models. It is therefore important that both emerging and established models maintain a healthy physique through a sensible diet and exercise regime. Plus-size modelling is building a place in the commercial industry, but this also demands for models to look after themselves. While plus-size models can be a bigger dress size, they are still expected to have proportional measurements.
  • Age. Female and male models are typically aged between 18-35, but there is little discrimination in the commercial world, with child and teenage modeling being very present in the industry. Brands require models of all ages to showcase their designs and promote their products. Mature models do have their part to play, but are hired less often than the younger generation.
  • Race. Although the modeling world is accepting of different ethnicities, there remains accusations of racism due to the visible proportional difference between races seen in fashion. Fortunately, we are now seeing most brands taking steps towards inclusivity.

The Expectations At a Photoshoot

The photographers and organisers will have high expectations. The model’s performance must be good as the brand is paying a lot of money to advertise their products. It is therefore important that, as the model, you are well-armed with a selection of suitable poses to impress on the day.

It’s also imperative that you listen closely to directions and respond in a confident, positive way.

How to Prepare For A Photoshoot

To deliver at a photoshoot, make sure that you prepare beforehand. Practice poses that are suitable for commercial modelling to ensure that you feel confident on the day. If you are unsure what poses are considered appropriate, do some research.

Usually, brands like to keep the posing simple with focus on the clothing. Practice in the mirror until you feel comfortable with how you pose. Don’t forget to work on facial expressions, too.

The Competition

Commercial modeling is fiercely competitive with a high amount of hopefuls all striving for the same roles. It is a tough industry to break into with only the dedicated and committed succeeding.

Rejection is rife in the modeling world, with potentials being knocked back countless times for different reasons. It is important to keep going as your big break may just be around the corner.

The Portfolio

Building a portfolio is essential to your success. This helpful resource showcases your talent and experience to potential clients.

Always select high-quality photographs that look professional. Opt for either an online or printed format, ensuring that the portfolio includes all the correct information. Your portfolio should have a sleek layout.

Remember, this evidence of work is representing you as a model before you have met the client; this means that some interviews and jobs will rely solely on the content of your portfolio.

A Quick Guide to Commercial Modeling

  • Commercial modeling covers a wide area including advertisements, product shots, TV Commercials and campaigns.
  • Attend as many castings as possible.
  • Prepare in advance for a photoshoot to appear confident and deliver on the day.
  • Be flexible to travel and working hours.
  • Do not be put off by the competition.
  • Build a professional portfolio.
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