Sunday, January 15, 2012

Five Things You Must Know When It Comes To Sed Cards

Starting out with runway modeling? One of the beginning things you definitely must do is create a comp card. So what are comp cards, and what ought you know about them? Let me share five things that any up and coming model should know about comp cards.

5. What Are Comp Cards?

Comp cards, also often called comp cards, are in a way a headshot for runway models. It includes a group of pictures from the model's work, and it lists the model's important stats. Comp cards should also identify contact numbers for the model or for the group of which the model is a part.

When you get down to it a comp card is a starting point between the model and a hoped for employer. Any time you go on a casting call, they will expect you to give them a comp card - like a performer would drop off a headshot or a average interviewee would leave a resume.

4. What Kind of Images Go On a comp Card?

A comp card is kind of a small, focused portfolio. You have to catch the eye of your hoped for director, and also show a little range. A comp card often starts with a headshot or similar tight shot on the first side, and a set of a few photographs on the other side. The other side of the card should display some variety - different kinds of make-up, modeling, hair, etc. Here is also a good location to include head to two pics, in lieu of the close up on the face of the card.

3. What Stuff Should Go on a Comp Card?

The information on the comp card has two goals - to share size and measurements and to list contact numbers. You should list the expected sizes like chest/bust, waist, hips, height, and weight. You could want to list eye color and hair color, yet this is less pivotal if it changes from time to time. You could also decide to include shoe size.

For the contact information, that's something for you to decide. You normally include the best way for the person to reach you. If you maintain a website or online portfolio, you would want to include that. If you have a dedicated phone number, you would want to include that too. I would probably include an e-mail address too.

2. How Large Is a Comp Card?

Designers will show you plenty of different sizes, but the normal size of a comp card is 5. 5" x 8. 5". Comp cards were at first designed on A4 sized paper (~8. 5" x 11"), but this later became A5 size (~5. 5" x 8. 5") in the seventies. The designer might offer you a slightly smaller\different size (~5" x 8") to cut back on paper and make the cards more cost effective. It's better to stay with the normal standard, however.

1. What Quality Paper Should You Use?

Comp cards should be made on good quality, thick card stock. In the way of paper weight, the weight should be from 12pt and 14pt. Anything thinner than 12pt will seem crappy; you don't want to appear cheap. Some designers are now offering cards printed on photo-quality paper, just as they print "greeting cards" printed on photo paper. Though they could suggest that it could lead to nicer color quality, a nice quality printer can print colors well on card stock. You ought to stick with the usual stock so that your card is thicker and more tough, rather than going for the thinner photo paper.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The History of Modeling Comp Cards - The 80s and 90's

he tools of design were primitive. Most starting models didn't have the money to create model composites, so they began with a basic 8x10, B&W print with a solid white outline. The model's stats were added to the back in plain text.

I remember those days, printing 50 to 100 copies of the identical boring headshot. So many times. These 8x10 photos were also pretty costly, and this stood in the way of the model passing them out. Models typically sent them to companies who were likely to offer them a paying gig, or to talent agents who were likely to hire them. Models probably missed out on a handful of gigs because they couldn't afford to give out headshots to just anyone.

Over time, a model would grow to be more successful and net more money. This would let the model to make a one-color composite card made by an efficient printer. Only the top models in New York City could pay for full color. Offset printing requires a lot of investment up front, but the price became reasonable if a print run of hundreds or thousands of composite cards was put to print. Now, a model had thousands of cards on hand - and the model could definitely afford to send a card to anyone who might be remotely interested in hiring the model. The zed cards were even cheap enough to put in the mail to mail to casting agents around the country, extending a model's scope.

The model comp cards of yesteryear were a specific way due to the tech and investments involved with printing. This determined one photograph on the front and a set of photos, every one a quarter of the space, on the rear of the card. A spot was also marked off on the back of the zed card to print stats for the model and a phone number.

Printing techniques wouldn't allow the pictures on the rear of the comp card from touching at all, and you could not make use of any spiffy colors or designs. All sed cards were therefore done on a plain background, with solid white outlines. These outlines also allowed the printing press to hold the comp card as it traveled through the printing process. Printers couldn't bleed to the edge, the way today's cards and layouts do. Although printing techniques has come quite a ways, the zed cards we print these days are still derived pretty solidly on this original design, which came out necessity.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Warning Signs of a Modeling Scam

If you're looking to break in to the industry of modeling, you have to watch for deceptive people. Some people are looking to defraud you, guaranteeing a great career in exchange for up front payment. When the dust settles the only thing you'll have is an empty wallet.

Here are some warning signs that you ought to run away from.

1. Classified ads. If you find an advert posted somewhere - in a newspaper, on a newsgroup, etc - then think twice before responding. Successful agencies have tons of available talent, and they do not need to scour the mall. You may want to pay attention to open casting calls, but otherwise classifieds like these are a bad sign.

2. Requiring cash first. If the modeling agency charges you money up front before you can sign with them, then do a 180 and walk out the door. This is a clear omen that they are not making money on paid gigs, so they have to make profit elsewhere. If they aren't making money, then neither will you.

3. Requiring that you use their in house photographer. A successful modeling agency will tell you to get a port together along with some comp cards, but they won't force you to invest tons of money on their own photographer. You can look around and choose a photographer or comp card printer who you feel comfortable with. If they really want a specific photographer, then they will pony up the cash.

4. They want you to pay to take their modeling classes or whatnot. It's just a way for them to make money. It might seem more honest than a "signing fee" or something. But in the end it's the same thing.

5. They guarantee you calls. If only it were that simple. No one can guarantee that you'll get a paid gig as a model, and any company that promises that is just trying to sweet talk you. Chances are, they're trying convince you into giving them some money.

After you've been told about some of these gigs, they become simple to notice. The core idea is that the company wants to bring in as many potential models as possible, bill them up front, and ultimately throw them a few bones with a few casting calls. As long as people keep coming in the door, they don't worry you're back at Starbucks not working. They made their profit. Don't let that moola be yours.