MODELING PAYMENTS AND COMPENSATION-
Summarized by David Martinez
Professional -modeling industry- jobs are booked and arranged through a model’s talent agent. The model’s agent is contacted by a booking agent that works directly for a client (product brand, clothing brand or directly with a brand designer or ad agency).
The payment range is based on the brand name of the product, the brand recognition and advertising usage. Most importantly, modeling compensation will be accessed and based on the model’s professional standing in the industry; how many editorial campaigns has the model done? How many high-quality campaigns has the model done? Does the model command professional name recognition in the editorial or advertising industry? Booking considerations will also take into account the model’s unique beauty, the model’s ability to hit quality poses consistently and the ease in working with the model. Therefore, and early on, it is important for a model to cultivate good relationships with photographers, makeup artists, hair designers and others; references and word-of-mouth (good or bad) matter. Keep in mind that the model does not negotiate compensation with the booking agent or client; the model’s agent will handle all booking arrangements and compensation on the model’s behalf. However, the model is free to reject any modeling offer that is not acceptable to her (of course, turning down work will risk future modeling offers).
Here’s a breakdown of work and modeling compensation-
- EDITORIAL WORK $-0- to $150 per day
These modeling jobs consist of photo shoots for fashion forward magazines
and editorial fashion content. These modeling events pay very little, to
nothing at all. Editorial gigs are the most effective way to gain image
content for your book and to also advertise your name and face. Optimally,
and regardless of payment, the model should try to do any editorial work
that will be featured on the cover of a magazine. This method is used to
build the model’s brand and requires only an investment of time.
- FITTINGS $100 to $300 per hour
Fittings consist of standing for a designer that basically sizes cloths on the
model (fitting the model). These jobs require the model to stand very still
while being fitted.
- SHOWROOM WORK $100 to $300 per hour
(typically a 4 hour half-day or $1,000 for a full-day)
Showroom work is a private showcasing of a designer brand to potential
department store buyers; the model typically showcases the clothing in the
form of a runway type display movement.
- LOOK BOOKS or E-commerce $800 to $5,000 per day
Typical high-key (infinite) background shoots for look books and
E-commerce merchandise. These production shoots may require numerous
clothing changes and therefore be fast paced.
- CATALOGUE SHOOTS $2,000 to $10,000 per day
(travel and/or location shoots, but may also
be an in-studio shoot)
Payment varies depending of the quality of the brand name and also the
quality of the model (as described at the beginning). The catalogue shoot
typically utilizes great background and location scenes and may include
exotic travel locations. Some catalogue shoots will be accomplished in
studio and may utilize green screen for post production imagery and
- RUNWAY SHOWS $-0- to Trade (clothing)
$500 to $1,000 per show
Runway shows will not change your life but they will get you conditioned
into modeling in front of a crowd of people and will give you experience
and confidence on the catwalk. Models can get their start with local runway
shows and work their way up to the better known fashion week events. Top
supermodels that are booked to open and walk prestigious runway shows
are sometimes paid as much as $10,000 to walk the runway. However, and
in general, runway fashion shows pay models little to nothing at all or
may be compensated with clothing.
- ADVERTISING JOBS $5,000 to $100,000
Advertising jobs have two payment components. The model gets paid a day
rate for the day of the shoot and then also gets paid for the advertising usage,
such as in store posters, advertising mailers, bus stop posters or giant
billboards signage. Some ad campaigns also include TV broadcast usage and
are then regulated through the Screen Actors Guild which includes a more
complex agreement and payment structure.
A L’oreal campaign typically pays between $30,000 to $50,000. A well
known super model under contract can make 1 to 5 million dollars
(however, this is not the norm). The typical ad campaign for a well known
working model will typically pay $50,000 to $100,000.
Year to year modeling income will vary but an average well known working model can expect to earn between $50,000 to $100,000 per year; the giant contract payments are the exception and not the rule.
Finally, during any given year, most if not all professional working models will engage in all of the above modeling jobs, including runway fashion shows as all models are in constant need of new content to keep their look books current and relevant.
This information was summarized by David Martinez and furnished by a well known top model, Teresa Moore. Ms Moore has worked for Ralph Lauren, L’Oreal, H&M, Harpers Bazaar, W magazine and Armani Exchange; she has over 10 years experience as a professional top model.