Baby model - Your child as a model, what is involved?
Most parents are at the birth of their baby under the assumption that they have produced the most beautiful creature in the world. Before the birth, a new photo camera is quickly purchased so that they do not have to miss anything of their new shoot. Snapshots for the photo album, grandfather and grandmother and for Facebook are being made full. Some parents take it one step further: their baby is a model!
Dressed up girls
Perhaps this evokes images of American scenes in which small dressed-up girls stare in front of themselves during hours of auditions. With parents who give their offspring clues as if their lives depend on it! Is this image correct with reality or is it very different in practice? Maybe you want to register your baby at a modeling agency but you do not know how to approach this. Which desk is reliable? Does such a job fit in the life of your baby? Is it a nice experience or is there a danger of contracting a trauma? In this article the answer to the question: my baby as a model; peace, cleanliness and regularity or outright disaster?
You can register your baby from birth at a modeling agency. Practice shows that the age of registration is around 4 to 5 months; putting your newborn baby in the limelight is labeled as 'not choosing' by most parents. Yet there is demand for newborn models. They are often found in the adult photo models that have recently given birth and are already familiar with modeling.
Is there a photo model in every baby?
You can find your baby, with the ears of grandfather and the nose of your favorite aunt, so beautiful, it's all about what the client wants to see with the product for which the assignment is being carried out. For newborns it is easy: if a commercial is made with Surinamese parents, then a dark baby is cast, the parents are white, then a white baby is sought. Yet it does not seem easy to indicate which models are popular, says Marcel van Oostveen of Casting- and Modelagency The Kids: 'Not all children who are registered with us are regularly booked; the children who often receive assignments apparently answer the beauty ideal.
King or queen of the average
The child must be the king or queen of the average. For all children, so also for babies, it must be a beautiful child, where externalities such as ears or nose may not be too conspicuous. In addition, babies with little hair are booked more often than those with a huge head of hair. '
Selected to size
In addition to the appearance, babies are selected for their sizes; there are many assignments for children with clothing sizes 68 and 74 and from size 104. In other words: there is enough work for babies and toddlers. The 'toddler sizes' 86, 92 and 98 offer less perspective. There is simply less advertising for this target group. An additional aspect is that children in this age are hard to record on the sensitive plate. 'The parents think their toddler is great, but with a dirty nose, food remains around the mouth, flawless hair and last but not least, a strong will (terrible two!) Are less suitable for the modeling profession. For assignments with toddlers, we usually book 2 children per assignment; if one person does not feel like it, then we will continue working with the other child ', says Marcel van Oostveen.
Parents who take the step and want to register their child, end up in a forest of modeling agencies, agencies, casting agencies and other companies with names that appeal to the imagination. There are agencies that specialize in working with children and there are those who work with models from 0 to 100 years. How do you know if you are dealing with a reliable party? First of all you can rely on membership at the BMCB: the Trade Association for Modeling and Casting agencies. Affiliated companies guarantee a professional approach. Offices that are not members of the BMCB are not necessarily unprofessional; after all, not every office feels called to join such a body. What else can you pay attention to when selecting a reliable modeling and casting agency?
Limit the investment: professional agencies invest in their models and do not charge or hardly charge registration costs. As soon as a high registration fee has to be paid, it is a good time to continue looking.
Do not make an expensive portfolio, or a folder with photos: most modeling agencies take care of this themselves for their models. They arrange the photographer and indicate which photos are needed. A contribution is required for this, but that is usually a contribution towards the costs.
Location: filming or photographing professional desks on location or in a studio. Photosessions in hotel rooms are strongly discouraged, or the hotel must be the client!
How can I register my baby?
On the websites of modeling and casting agencies you will find information about a registration and often also a registration form. You are usually asked to send a number of photos of your child.
Tip: also read the general conditions on the website, then you know exactly what your child and the office can expect from each other!
Hundreds of registrations
Does filling in a registration form and sending photos mean that my child receives assignments? Not in most cases. Marcel van Oostveen of The Kids: 'Potential models are invited to our office for an introductory meeting: a picture of a child on a pearl-white beach, with setting sun on a tropical destination is difficult to assess, everyone is a model of photography. Then we decide whether the child will be included in our model file. '
Should there be some time before contact is made, remember that some agencies will receive hundreds of registrations per week that have to be assessed on model potential!
On the set
Your baby has been chosen to record a commercial. That is exciting enough! How does this work in his work? What if my baby gets a cry? Is the rhythm of my child taken into account? Vincent Wats from De Casting Studio - this agency casts models for, among other things, commercials - tells how a baby is treated on the set: 'Filming with a baby can cause unexpected situations. Unlike adults, babies have their own rhythm that we need to take into account. The filming is tuned as well as possible: there is filming in the morning, just after a diet or at another time in consultation with the parents. A quiet environment is provided: during the filming there are few people in the studio. Everything is prepared to the last detail and prepared so that the baby does not have to wait and is immediately on the turn.
Filming must continue
Of course it is important that the commercial is recorded: the filming has to continue. Because filming with a baby is an uncertain matter, usually several children are cast for an assignment. The customer can then give preference to a particular baby and choose a number 2 and 3. If, for whatever reason, the first baby does not succeed, the next child will be filmed. The client is aware of this working method and has full understanding for this. In fact, it always works in this way: a good preparation, with sufficient rest and patience. '
Does it still yield?
The modeling section for babies and children is quite lucrative: children receive a daily allowance and the type of work also influences the income. Fees of around 250 euros for a day per baby are normal. Even if your child is present as a reserve, which happens regularly in babies, and eventually does not come into the picture, you still receive the daily allowance. Other model agencies apply an hourly rate of 22 euros on average, which also covers the travel costs incurred. If your baby is chosen to become the face of a brand for a certain period of time, it is common for your child not to commit to another brand. This is called a buy-out and there is an attractive remuneration for this. Newborns are not eligible for this because their appearance changes so quickly and the recognisability of a baby is small.
What can you expect?
My child is registered with a modeling agency: what can I expect now? A story from practice!
Jade Fafieanie, now 16 years old, has already had a career as a model and actress. She was discovered when she was 2.5 years old, by modeling and casting agency Mother Anne. It was not necessary to create a portfolio yourself: the agency took care of the photos and created a portfolio. Jade, with her red curls and freckles, is also a striking appearance when she was little, and soon became a model for Oilily. She has been a model for the summer and winter collection for 3 years. In doing so, she did an ad for the Chipknip, among other things, and posed with Tompoucen van de Hema.
Her mother Saskia relates: "As soon as Jade was in front of the camera, something happened, she was very photogenic and had fun. She was often chosen for assignments and then we went on the road. You were present on the set for a whole day, but it was really a holiday! The children were kept busy in a fun way and there was plenty of time to film the commercial or take pictures. '
How often she is chosen
'How often your child works depends on how often he or she is chosen. You can also go to auditions for commercials yourself. You can go to an audition every weekend if you want and there are parents who do that. I myself have always adapted the work of Jade to the schedule of our family. If Jade had a birthday party, she would go there and not to an audition. I also always looked if she felt like it, if it was not too far away and if it was a nice product. With an audition you are busy all day long and then you have to wait and see if your child is chosen. How is it dealt with children who do not feel like or do not cooperate? It is often the parents who come up with 'sanctions' as: 'Tonight you will not get a dessert if you do not cooperate!' I never did that myself. If I thought it would take too long for Jade, I determined when we went home. A photographer obviously did not like that, but the interests of my child always came first. '
Jade also played in a feature film by Cirque du Soleil: Alegrí-a. The recordings were in Berlin. We have very positive memories about that. We were in a luxury hotel and everything was arranged for us. Here, too, I guarded the boundaries. So Jade had to take a night scene and I refused. A child belongs in bed at night and not on a cold, dark set. The scene was then taken up with another child.
Do you have tips for parents who want to register their child as a baby model?
'Your child is placed in a world where it does not really belong. It is therefore important that you yourself guard the limits of what you find acceptable. It is important that your child likes it. Your child will be treated carefully, but if a child does not want to, it becomes a struggle. You decide how often you go to auditions and you can control the work. When your child is chosen for an assignment, you are, as it were, obliged to accept the assignment. That's logical, that's how it works in adult models too, but it's important to realize that. '
Does it yield something for the baby model?
'Yes, taking pictures produces several hundred euros and a commercial of course more. You can be a better model than having a newspaper district! "
Why did Jade stop?
'When she was about 8 years old, we noticed that she was being chosen less and less. The preference was for younger children. Jade did not like it anymore and the time was right to stop. '
How do you look at it now?
'It has been a fantastic experience and as long as your child likes it, and you yourself stay on the ground with both feet, there is nothing to worry about.'
You can register your baby with confidence at a reliable modeling agency.
Keep an eye on the boundaries
The peace, cleanliness and regularity that a baby needs is taken into account as much as possible. Do you like parents with both feet on the ground and keep an eye on the limits of your child, then the modeling experience can be a fun experience! It becomes a disaster when your baby does not feel like posing and does not enjoy it. In that case, you better put down that your child is simply not suitable as a model! But do not worry, that offers other perspectives. Perhaps there is a professional football player in your baby, or a singer, or a ...
How much can a baby work?
The Working Hours Act stipulates that children up to 7 years of age are not allowed to work. Nevertheless, there are a number of exceptions. These can be read on the website of the Labor Inspectorate.