Hi guys! This is something that I get asked about a lot. Advice regarding legitimate agencies and how to get your child signed to one. This post will explain all of this, along with Mila’s experience so far.
How and why did I get Mila Into modelling?
One of my best friends Resha messaged me one day when Mila was about 9 weeks old. There was a post on Facebook regarding a company looking for a young baby for modelling. I joined the Facebook group, spoke to other mums regarding the child modelling agency and got into it from there.
Baby modelling is something I’ve always been interested in getting the kids into. When jai was first born I applied to some agencies, but looking back on it now they were definitely scams and I’m so glad I didn’t sign with any of them. As he was my first born, I was wrapped up in the whole motherhood thing as a whole and the modelling went to the back of my mind.
When Mila was born, and I saw how gorgeous she was, I definitely wanted to get her into it.
How do I apply?
Further down in this post you will find a list of all legitimate agencies. Head to their websites and apply! Never pay a penny to join an agency – this will be a scam. Some fake agencies can charge thousands of pounds for a portfolio that your child doesn’t need.
Did you know that for babies you need to update their pictures every month? Can you imagine how expensive that would be? All you need is your phone or a digital camera and you take your children’s pictures from home!
Further Down you will also find the guidelines for the photos you need to take to apply, and then wait to hear back. It can take up to 6 weeks for them to get back to you, and they only tend to do so for acceptances. Don’t be disheartened if your child doesn’t get accepted. Keep applying to other agencies and make sure your pictures are as described below. Feel free to message me the pics you have taken and I can let you know if they are suitable.
Which agencies are legitimate?
So below there are lists of legit child modelling agencies. They are separated into agencies in the North and the South. You really need to be based either in London and surroundings, or Manchester and surroundings – as this is where most castings and shoots take place. Some agencies will only take on children who live in these areas. However, some are more flexible and they are happy with wherever you live, as long as you are willing to travel, possibly very far, at the drop of a hat!
There are also two types of agencies. Sole and non-sole. If you sign to a sole agency it means that you can only be signed with them and only do modelling work through them. If you sign to a non-sole, it means you can sign to multiple non-soles at the same time.
There are pros and cons to both. We personally went with a sole as I believe some of the best agencies are sole (Ray and robin, Bruce and brown, Grace and Galor etc)
Just because you are with multiple agencies it doesn’t mean you will get more work, but just because you are with a top agency it doesn’t mean you will get more work. It’s a hard one. I think you need to go with your gut, try it out, and if you are unhappy you can always go from sole to non-sole, or vice versa.
North & south agencies – sole
Bonnie & Betty
Kids London/ Kids Manchester
So talented London
North & south agencies – non-sole
Model me management
South agencies – Sole
Bruce and brown
Grace and Galor
Ray and Robin
South coast Kidz
Daisy and dukes
South agencies – Non-sole
North agencies – sole
Boss model management
North agencies – Non-sole
What photos should I submit to agencies?
I can guarantee you that your child is beautiful – all children are. The thing that will set your child apart from the rest and get them a spot with a top agency is all down to you. Photos are everything.
– No hair bows!! No matter how tempting this may be, you will not get accepted if you apply with bows in your child’s hair!! I’m talking from experience. When I reapplied without the bows we were accepted!
– No dummies/ hats/ messy faces
– Hair should be out and natural
– plain clothing. A white baby-grow is perfect for a baby, and a plain white shirt for an older child.
– No filters or editing! Again, so important! Agencies will know and they will not take on your child.
– The lighting should be good. No shadows on the face. Clear white background, no clutter. In front of a plain white wall is ideal. Make sure nothing else is in the photo.
Please can you explain what happens at a casting and a shoot?
So a casting is basically an audition for a job. Prior to this, a company, for example; Mothercare, will give the modelling angency a brief of what they are exactly looking for. The agency will them present them with model cards containing photos of each child that means the brief. The company then decides who they would like to see at a casting.
Castings tend to be very last minute, sometimes you may even be told the night before. For this reason you need to be flexible and it is more difficult if you are working.
For Mila’s Next casting, we were given three days notice. We were told to be at the location between 09.30 and 10.30, and as I hate being late we were there at 09.25. We were second there, which means we got seen really quickly. 15 minutes later there were about 50 babies in the waiting room!
We got called in, given a baby grow to try on, and Mila was put in front of the camera. A photographer took her photos for a couple of minutes and she was done! As easy as that.
You generally hear back within two weeks. We heard back exactly two weeks after, and we were availability checked for a job the following week. (Availability checks do not necessarily mean they’ve got the job. You will be told soon after if you have been confirmed for the job.) Two days before the shoot Mila was confirmed. Yippee!!
At the shoot, the whole team were really lovely. There were other models there ranging from toddlers, up to adults. Mila was shooting for a Christmas range of family matching pjs. There was breakfast and drinks available on set and you were made to feel very relaxed. There’s quite a big team of photographers, stylists, creative directors and make up artists etc but it’s a great experience and there’s always someone to answer your questions.
Mila wasn’t great at this shoot as she was unwell on the day so very clingy to me. But she got through it and hopefully they got some great snaps! Looking forward to seeing her on the Next website at Christmas!!
The maximum hours for a young child on set is 5 I believe, and the child has plenty of breaks in between. All jobs are licensed by your local council, as a child is working. This is all done by your agency so not something you have to worry about.
Mila waiting to go into her first casting
What modelling work has Mila done?
So as above she has done Next. She has also been in a US tv series which is out in America at the end of July! This was such an exciting experience for us, as it was her first job. We were picked up in a Mercedes and taken to a hotel. Right outside the whole road had been closed for location filming. Eventually we were called to set and Mila did so well! It was really cold but her lovely on screen mum and dad kept her warm and happy. They had to do the 45 second scene about 20 times so it took a while.
We had lunch in the hotel and then was driven home. Such a lovely day!
I think that is pretty much all of the questions that we have been asked. If there is anything else please comment below or DM me. I’m happy to help!