Plus-size modeling promotes ‘real’ body shapes where models wear a size 12+. Their work encompass every aspect of the modeling industry: from fashion shoots and major campaigns promoting products on skin care, make-up and hair products to lingerie and swimsuits.
With over 60% of women being size 12+, curvy models are in demand and plus-size girls now forge fabulous careers and travel the world working for international clients.
** Why consider a career in plus-size modeling? **
Think of the clothes, the fun, the travel and an opportunity to work in a glamorous and exciting industry. Plus, it’s really rewarding to represent a new, and more representative, body type where ‘phat’ has a whole new meaning!
But first thing’s first, don’t give up your day job. To develop a career and earn a lot of money from modeling you need a great portfolio filled with a diverse range of photographs and tears sheets (pages from a publication you appeared in). Getting your portfolio together can take two years but the experience is worth it.
Plus-size models have the opportunity to work internationally and make a good living. The more successful ones make it their business to work with their agency to learn the industry and plan their career. These professionals understand that highly lucrative jobs are scarce and there’s fierce competition to win the job. In most cases the client will use the same model for back-to-back campaigns (think Kate Dillon for Marina Rinaldi, Carolyn Murphy for Estée Lauder or Kate Moss for Calvin Klein). The modeling world also revolves around seasons so for many months there can be little or no work.
By learning about the industry models aren’t deterred, just realistic. They plan their down time and enjoy the jobs they book when things pick up and opportunities arise.
** What Companies Use Plus-size Models? **
As the population gets curvier, more companies feature bodacious babes in their advertising campaigns and editorials: Ashley Stewart, Marina Renaldi, Delta Burke, Jaclyn Smith, My Size, 1626, Maggie T, Cover Girl, Cosmopolitan, Family Circle, Glamour, Jane, Marie Claire, Cleo, Woman’s Day, Chatelaine.
** Success can come when you least expect it **
There are times when you will go to casting after casting and don’t book one job. This is usually when new models become discouraged and start re-considering their decision to pursue a plus-size modeling career. Then guess what happens? Persistence pays off and things start falling into place.
It usually takes a good 12 months for models to start booking regular clients. Agents often tell their models that being with a plus-size model agency is a WIP (work in progress). It won’t happen over night, but it will happen.
Being professional and prepared at all times and really working at being a plus-size model will make it happen. It sometimes only takes one photograph for the model’s career to skyrocket and that’s why it’s very important to keep testing and trying different photographers to get that ‘one’ shot that will make all the difference.
Our agency had one model that was doing ‘okay’ and then had a test shoot with a funky new photographer. This guy got ‘the shot’ that took her career from strength to strength and she is now working overseas as an international model.
It’s an important lesson, modelling isn’t just about you. It’s a complex collaboration between your agency, the client, photographer, stylist, make-up artist, hair stylist and a whole bunch of other people. Work it to wow!
** Famous plus size models **
When BGM Director, Darrianne Donnelly, started her career she was the lone ranger. Fortunately for you, plus-size models are everywhere from America’s Next Top Model to the pages of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.
Famous plus-size models include:
· Model and spokesperson, Emme
· Kate Dillon
· Allegra Doherty
· Toccara Jones from America’s Next Top Model
· The Biggest Loser’s Tracy Moores
· Actress and model, Carrie Otis
· Symantha Perkins
· Mia Tyler
· Plus-size superstar, Natalie Wakeling
· Singer, Queen Latifah
· Sophie Dahl
· Barbara Brickner
· Liis Windischmann
· Pippa Jefferys
** Could I be a plus-size model? **
Here’s a simple run down of the criteria agencies are looking for:
– Height between 5′ 8” (172cms) and 6″(180cms)
– Wear a US size 12/14 as this is usually the client’s sample range
With over 60% of women being size 12+, curvy models are in demand!