Should you allow your child to become a model?

01 October 2014

Every mom knows their little prince or princess is the most beautiful in the world. But if your child’s appearance gets noticed by others, and perhaps even a modelling agency, then perhaps you should consider venturing into this exciting world.

Child modelling can be rewarding for both you and your child. It will provide opportunities for your child to grow in confidence, learn responsibility and time management, become self-reliant and begin to understand the value of money and work.

Brooke Shields (49), Charlize Theron (39) and Kendall Jenner (18) are just some of the big-name celebs who started modelling at a young age.

Brooke is known for having started her modelling career at 11 months old when she appeared in advertisements for Ivory Soap. Home-grown A-lister Charlize moved to Milan at the age of 16 to pursue a modelling career after she won a contest her mother entered her into. And Kendall, who recently dropped her last name à la Iman, began modelling at just 14. She was featured in Paper magazine’s feature section titled “Beautiful People”, along with sister Kylie.

Five aspects to take into account if your child goes into modelling:

1. The reputability of the agency you sign with

This is important. Choose an agency that has your child’s interests and safety in mind. Don’t rush into signing contracts, and make sure you ask questions about anything you’re unsure of. Ask how much they take as commission, how long payment takes and about working hours.

2. Your child’s health

With any endeavour your child becomes involved in, it’s important to make sure he/she is kept healthy. Modelling may place extra stress on your child, especially if there are photoshoots scheduled late in the evenings or over weekends. It’s vital your child gets enough rest and eats a balanced and varied diet.

3. Your child’s happiness

An unhappy child invariably means an unhappy parent. You want the best for your little blossom and modelling agencies want the happiest, most relaxed and at ease child possible. If your child expresses unhappiness at a photoshoot or doesn’t want to do certain things, don’t force them. While the bigger picture may be clearer to you, your child’s peace of mind in the moment is more important to take into consideration. If the experience isn’t fun or is too stressful for your child, then stop.

4. Your child’s education

This aspect can’t be ignored, overlooked or pushed aside for a modelling career. Your child’s education should always come first. If their career takes off, then home-schooling could become a consideration. While your child is new to the modelling business, make sure homework is seen to, exam preparation receives attention and you keep up to date with things at school. It’s also a good idea to keep your child’s teacher in the loop with regard to modelling news and plans.

5. The money

This is undoubtedly one of the reasons why your child is modelling. It can be a lucrative business, and provide a useful base to start a savings fund for your child. Agencies often take between 60 and 90 days from month-end after the job to pay. Agents typically take up to 20 percent of the total pay from a job.

Go to http://www.kidsincmodels.co.za/faq.html for more information.

-Megan Bursey

SOURCES: kidsincmodels.co.za, babble.com, oprah.com, papermag.com, netmums.com

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