Legitimate Agencies

Full Service vs. Boutique Agencies

How Agencies Work

Life Of An Agent

First Time Actors

New Models

Agency Open call/auditions

Agency Phones

When to call the Agency

Buyer Auditions and callbacks

Finding Work

Telephone Dialer

What ages does AFFINITY represent?

Where does AFFINITY represent?

Child Models

Celebrity Models

High Fashion

Fashion Visa Issues

General Fashion

Commercial Print models

Petite models

Parts models

Swimsuit Models

Lingerie Models

Nude Models

Stylists/Make Up Artists Representation

Photographer Representation

Submitting Pictures To Affinity Talent

Sending professional photographs

Sending Amateur Photographs

Advice on Amateur Photographs

Scanning and Sending Email Pictures

Where to Send photographs

Agency Acceptance:

Exclusive and Non-Exclusive Representation

Frequency of Photograph Replacement

 

APPLICATION ISSUES

Date of birth

Social Security number

Ideal salary

Timeliness of Payment

Travel and housing Accommodations

Model/Talent Availability

Personal Information Updates

Flaws and Markings

Limitations

Measurements

Union and Non-Union Representation

Languages

Computer Skills

Unusual Talents

AFFINITY Composite Cards

Working with AFFINITY buyers

Multiple Agency Representation

Why Models and Actors Seek Representation

Why Buyers use Talent Agencies

Agency Commissions

Scams and Rip-Offs

Trade Show and Promotional Assignments

Model Performance Expectations

TimeSheets and Vouchers

Am I an employee of AFFINITY?

What are the advantages of Trade Show & Promotional Modeling?

Professional Photography

How to Evaluate A Photographer:

Where and How to Get Pictures Printed

 

Legitimate Agencies

No legitimate, state licensed talent agency ever charges any up-front or mandatory fees to models or actors. AFFINITY does not charge any fees for representation.

Agencies can charge the following however: cost of reproducing materials for the model, the cost of any advances paid out to the model or advances for the models marketing materials (comp cards, web pages, etc). These charges must be approved in advance by the model or actor. It is not mandatory that the actor/model purchase composite cards or webpages in order to be represented by the agency.

AFFINITY is not affiliated with any escort or other adult entertainment services.

AFFINITY is not a temporary employment agency.

AFFINITY does not accept any form of payment for referrals to photographers, trainers, schools or other industry vendors. AFFINITY does not offer classes or trainings. AFFINITY is solely in the business of procuring work for models, talent, photographers, make up artists, and stylists.

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Full Service vs. Boutique Agencies

Some agencies focus on only one area of modeling. These agencies are often called 'boutiques.' Other agencies focus on only high-end stars or celebrities, these also are referred to as boutique agencies. Some agencies only focus on actors and refer to themselves only as 'talent agencies.' Other agencies focus only on models and thus refer to themselves only as 'model agencies.' Full Service agencies have multiple departments that handle every aspect of both the talent and modeling fields. They are no better or worse than boutique agencies, simply focusing on a higher volume of work. One advantage of full-service agencies is that they may provide work for one model/talent in more than one department.

AFFINITY is a Full Service Agency dedicated to both talent and modeling departments.

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How Agencies work:

Talent agencies have very powerful and influential negotiating mechanisms that keep their clients working. Talent agents are representatives of specific talent agencies who negotiate deals on behalf of their clients and find work for their clients. Talent agents evolved out of the notion that many creative people have difficulty maintaining business relationships while focusing on their art. The talent agent along with other business professionals can help generate more money while untangling contractual problems for the creative people. The agent works for the talent in promoting and arranging bookings on the talents behalf and in return the agent receives a commission from the assignments that are completed by the talent. Agents of small agencies each take on a specific talent area like modeling and interact frequently with the clients in that area, but the agents must also have some knowledge of all of the talent that are represented by the agency. This knowledge enables the agent to make informed decisions when asked by other agents for input about a specific client booking.

Agents deal on a daily basis with their clients (i.e. talent, models, etc.), buyers (i.e. casting directors, producers, networks, studios, photographers), accountants, attorneys, business mangers, personal mangers and other talent agents. Agents help the talent adhere to the acting industry requirements by consulting with them on every decision from where to get head shots printed to what to wear to auditions.

Just as the agents have a specific relationship with the talent, they also have a relationship with the buyer. The agent-buyer relationship is very unique in that buyers can be many different types of people with many different types of needs. For example, a casting director may be looking for specific actors from the agency to audition for a part, while a photographer just needs five children from the agency as soon as possible for a photo shoot.

Agents also deal with attorneys, who document deals and 'clean up messes', and accountants who serve as record-keepers. Last but not least, the agent-to-agent relationship is very close-knit with everyone working to help each other get bookings filled so that the entire agency profits.

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Life of An Agent

Agents spend a majority of their time sitting at desks conversing on the telephone. The telephone is their life line, it connects them locally to their clients, and many thousands of miles away to potential buyers. Buyers are always calling to request auditions for the agent's clients. The agent must relay this information to the client via the telephone, but since the talent is normally always working, many messages are left on pagers and answering machines. Agents also field calls from buyers who have worked with specific clients previously and would like to know the client's availability for future projects. A lot of these buyers will request recent head shots to be faxed or emailed right away. This means that the agent must take the time to pull the head shot and resume from the filing cabinet and then fax or email it.

Since the majority of the agents time is exhausted on the telephone persuading buyers to use their clients, the agents do not like to spend much time conversing with their own clients on the telephone, unless the client is needed for an audition or if the agent needs to update records. Agents just do not have the time to chat with clients when the majority of their time needs to be spent finding buyers. Clients normally only call the agency when instructed to by an agent or if they are 'booking out'. 'Booking out" means that the client will be unavailable to work for the agency for a specified period of time due to illness, a vacation, etc.

Most agent client correspondences are normally done through the mail, email, over the web with newsletters and rarely over the phone.

Agents also spend a majority of their time reviewing breakdowns that are faxed in from Los Angeles. 'Breakdowns' are basically synopses of parts that are being cast by casting agencies. They always request a specific piece of material like a demo tape or a head shot and a resume to be sent for consideration in the audition process. On most breakdowns there is always a tight deadline (usually by the very next day) for consideration of the talent. The breakdowns are distributed to each agent and they must review the breakdowns and decide which of their clients, if any, will best fit the qualifications of the open part. It is during this process that many of the agents converse with each other to get different opinions of who's head shot shall be sent. This collective thought process helps to pin point the exact talent that should be sent, instead of sending a whole bunch of nonsensical head shots. If only one client really, really fits the part being cast than only that one head shot and resume is sent. The buyer receives hundreds of head shots a day and it makes their job a lot easier when the agents help to narrow the choice down for them. Plus, if the agent sends the talent the buyer is looking for, then the buyer will most likely return to that same agency when they need more talent in the future.

Agencies become known in the industry by the clients they represent. Once the talent is decided on by the agent, the head shot and resume must be pulled and arranged into a presentable packet that is sent to the potential buyer. This is quite a labor intensive process due to the fact that most of the talent have a variety if head shots and other paraphernalia to choose from. There are commercial head shots, zed cards, demo tapes, video tapes, etc. All of the breakdowns must be finished quickly and mailed to ensure that they will reach Los Angeles by the following day.

Modeling agents spend a majority of their time laying out portfolios for their clients. A portfolio can be defined as a collection of the model's best photos arranged in a specific way to appeal to the buyers needs. For models, portfolio books and composite cards or zed cards are essential in marketing themselves. The composite card acts as the models business card. It communicates who the model is through the body statistics and a sampling of photographs. The card is very uniform with one basic shot on the front with the model's first and last name printed underneath. The agency's logo also appears with their phone number on this card. Agents also design headsheets, which are posters with small head shots of each of the models that the agency represents. The headsheet is sent out to potential buyers as a quick reference material. When the agents are not answering phones or reviewing breakdowns, much of their time is spent writing and typing correspondences, editing film to be used as promotional material for buyer, interviewing aspiring talent, reviewing head shot files, scheduling makeup and photography sessions and massaging egos. Each agent has separate responsibilities, but all work together as a team.

Agents and The Web

Now, with the advent of the World Wide Web, both agents and buyers sit at computers and email requests. The agent quickly scans through the agency's own online database and sends files filled with the talent that she would like the buyer to view. The file is received by the buyer. It is then viewed and a response is made by email as to the talent the buyer would like to audition the following day. This process eliminates all of the phone tag, and faxing and mailing that normally takes place, therefore, allowing the audition process to proceed at a quicker pace. The files that are sent to the buyer can also be saved by the buyer for future use. This eliminates lost head shots and allow the buyers to establish their own databases with talent that they might be interested in pursuing for future assignments.

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First Time Actors

The odds are great that most actors will not be famous. Less than 1 percent of all actors are relatively 'famous.' A larger percentage are working semi-regularly but it is probably still well below 5% of all actors.

It would be wise to focus on acting because it brings you deep artistic and personal satisfaction, not for the possibility of great fame and fortune.

With all of that said, if you truly wish to become an accomplished actor, we strongly recommend that you thoroughly investigate all of the acting schools in your area. Ask yourself these questions:

What is the acting experience and training of the drama teacher offering classes?

Are they offering you an opportunity to attend one class for free to evaluate?

Are they giving you real techniques that teach you how to react to other people onstage?

Be sure to evaluate your progress as you go along. Ask people outside your family for honest and clear critical feedback on your performances but don't take any one evaluation too seriously. Compare different reactions and see if they are saying something similar. If so, try to correct your performance flaws and remember, you are not your performance. It is a technique that needs to be improved, not your soul.

Also, evaluate the local acting 'conservatories' and stand-alone acting schools. AFFINITY recommends acting schools that are 'stand-alone' schools. This means they are not attached to any other kind of school. Go out to plays and stay afterwards to ask the actors you found most convincing, where they studied. This will give you a wealth of information. Also, look for classes in any dramatic arts magazines at a large bookstore in your city.

You may want to join an improvisational group for more skill building and increase of your on-stage spontaneity.

You may find inexpensive acting classes at local community colleges. Yes, some people under 18 can go to community college courses. Also look at the YMCA or other community based agencies for acting classes.

Be careful in evaluating any television or film acting schools. The best acting schools teach you how to act on stage first. You can then alter your technique for the screen. The AFFINITY agency recommends an acting school that teaches either/both the Meisner technique and the Method techniques of acting. If you wish to act in commercials you may well take a few courses and then present yourself to an agent as a tv commercial actor.

There are three secrets to acting: 1. Training 2. Training and 3. Training.

Get into as many stage plays as you can. Offer your services as talent to student filmmakers at the local colleges that have film departments. You may call the deans or administration of the fine arts departments of these schools.

Look in your local free alternative newspapers for auditions for plays, but be careful. Some auditions are actually scams that are trying to sell you services or products of some kind. Be sure it is an audition for a play which has an actual theater space and show dates scheduled.

Finally, when all else fails, create your own plays, films, videos and hire yourself as the star. A local radio announcer once said, "if you don't like the news, go out and make some of your own." In the same way, if there isn't enough opportunity in your area for gaining acting experience, you will need to gather together with other actors and put on your own productions at local community spaces.

Avoid presenting yourself as an actor to an agent until you have received some training. Are there agents who will still take you on for commercials, or even acting roles? Perhaps...but they are risking their reputation if they send you out for a real acting job and you don't have experience.

Remember, acting is a profession. Almost everybody believes they are a great actor. In life, many of us act all of the time. We act one way for our teachers, another for our parents, another for our friends. We often feel that we are 'putting on a show,' and many times we put on a convincing performance. Acting on stage or before the camera is quite different.

Fixing your clock radio doesn't make you an electrician. Similarly, making your friends laugh doesn't make you a stand-up comedian. The same is true of acting.

While you may occasionally find yourself impressing others with your skill, you must not assume that you can walk into Paramount studios and star in a multimillion dollar film.

If you want to be an electrician, you study electronics and you study long and hard. If you want to be an actor, just calling yourself one is not enough. You must study the craft and practice it diligently.

Talent Agencies are filled with stories of people claiming they were 'the greatest actor that ever lived.' These same people give the worst auditions ever seen. It not only wastes the agents time, but makes them reluctant to ever see the 'actor' again. Would these same people walk into Microsoft and just say 'I'm a computer genius' because they can operate a keyboard and mouse? Please keep this in mind as you pursue the business of acting.

When you have a good resume and a good solid head shot photograph, then is the time to seek an agent. An agent represents talent. They are only as good as their talent. The talent must prove to a prospective agent that they are "marketable" through a solid history of accomplishments in the theatrical field. These can only be achieved through experience.

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New Models

It would be wise to focus on modeling because it brings you extra income and a sense of personal satisfaction, not for the possibility of great fame and fortune. Less than 1 percent of all models are relatively 'famous.' A larger percentage are working semi-regularly but it is probably still well below 5% of all models.

If you truly wish to become an accomplished model, we strongly recommend that you thoroughly investigate all of the modeling schools, seminars and training in your area. Ask yourself these questions:

What is the modeling experience and training of the teacher offering classes?

Are they offering you an opportunity to attend one class for free to evaluate?

Are they giving you real techniques that teach you how to perform on camera and onstage?

Be sure to evaluate your progress as you go along. Ask people outside your family for honest and clear critical feedback on your performances but don't take any one evaluation too seriously. Compare different reactions and see if they are saying something similar. If so, try to correct your performance flaws and remember, you are not your performance. It is a technique that needs to be improved, not your soul.

Many books and tapes on modeling are sold through Models Mart (212-944-0638) in New York. Also, look for books on modeling and fashion as well as any dramatic arts magazines at a large bookstore in your city.

You may want to join an improvisational group for more skill building and increase of your on-stage spontaneity.

You may find less expensive modeling classes by attending a modeling event and staying afterward to request training from models you think were especially talented. It may take at least 50 hours of training to become confident in runway catwalk techniques so be prepared.

If you wish to become a fashion model, and you are a female, over 18 and under 5'9, or a male under 6', you're at a disadvantage. This is simply because there are many men, women and girls/boys who are this height and, unfortunately, clothes just seem more elegant looking when worn by these bodies. Why this is so could best be explained by designers and psychologists. Be that as it may, girls who are 5'7 are occasionally considered if they have an amazing look. It is rare however.

If you are over 18 and still under 5'7 we will have difficulty representing you as a fashion model. If you are 17 or under and 5'7 and growing, you have possibilities in fashion.

If you wish to become a commercial print model for the catalogue or magazine industry you may find work-but only if your look is marketable. Be very critical in your analysis of your look. You may well be pleasant to look at and still not suitable for print. Some very attractive people do not photograph well and vice versa. Remember: YOUR ATTRACTIVENESS IS NOT DETERMINED BY PUBLIC OPINION OR BY YOUR ACCEPTANCE OR REJECTION AS A MODEL. This is a very rarified field. The models you see in film, television and print have been weeded out from hundreds of thousands of attractive people. They are the crème de la crème of society's image of beauty. Please seriously evaluate if your looks are at that level. You can still be great looking without being model material.

If you are not a model, you may still have potential as an actor. Many non-model types have been a smashing success as film or television actors.

We may also represent you as a promotional and/or tradeshow model if you are appropriate. Promotional models promote products live at festivals, malls, big events, trade shows, etc.

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Open Call and Agency Auditions

AFFINITY LA only accepts email submissions at this time. If we like your pictures, we will invite you to the open call. NO GENERAL OPEN CALLS. Please send all pictures and correspondence regarding representation to: info@affinitytalent.com

Talent are contacted via email after submission of pictures and told to come in for our open call days. Talent will be given the times and location at that time. There are no general OPEN CALLS. Talent are invited based on email picture submission. We do not accept submissions by regular mail.

If we like your email pictures, we will invite you to the open call.

For all open calls, do not be early and do not be late. Be prepared to be in the agency for about one hour.

Once chosen, talent are encouraged to bring 10-20 copies of professional or amateur pictures and a resume. Talent should bring as many different amateur or professional pictures as they can. Talent do not need composite cards. The agency will work closely with talent to develop appropriate composite cards.

WHAT TO WEAR TO YOUR APPOINTMENT

Wear your hair and makeup in a flattering, simple, natural style that lets the real you show through and makes you feel attractive. Wear an outfit that shows your legs and your figure. Most agents concur that the most common appearance mistakes they see in applicants are overbleached, over processed (permed etc.) or poorly cut hair, too much makeup, skin problems, and excessive weight.

Before an appointment with an agent, do not do anything such as cut, color or perm your hair, tweeze your eyebrows, get a suntan, or make any change that will require weeks or months to undo. It the agency likes you, they will want you to begin right away and will want the most options for changing your hair or making alterations to mold you into an image that will be marketable.

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Stylists/Make Up Artists Representation

Photographer Representation

Photographers, Stylists, Make Up Artists are welcome to show their work to AFFINITY Talent Coordinators on Thursdays between 2pm and 5:00pm.

Agency Phones

PHONE DIALER: If a buyer requests multiple models or talent on a job, AFFINITY may use a computer phone-dialer. Talent will hear a pre-recorded message regarding jobs and giving the number to call. Talent must remind all members of the household that, in order for the Phone Dialer to deliver the jobs message, it requires several seconds of silence after hearing a greeting. Therefore, talent must not hang up the phone if they do not hear someone respond immediately. They must wait a few seconds for the Phone Dialer to 'kick in.'

Due to time constraints, the talent who call back early get the jobs.

Most of AFFINITY's business takes place over the phone. The agency's staff don't mean to be abrupt but AFFINITY must keep the lines open for buyers. AFFINITY's staff members are very social people, but they must keep most of their conversations brief.

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When to Call the Agency

Remember, agencies deal in high call volume. AFFINITY requests that talent do not call in asking for work. To contact the agency about non-urgent matters, talent may send email to info@affinitytalent.com. Before emailing the agency, talent must consider the massive amount of email received by a talent agency and to act accordingly. If the question in the email has been covered on the website, there will be no response.

Talent are encouraged to email only if they have more or less general availability (not on a weekly basis), salary criteria changes, or any other significant changes.

When responding to a job-call, talent may call 1-323-525-0577. During the day AFFINITY request's short messages so that the staff may continue to serve buyers efficiently.

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Buyer Auditions and Callbacks

Often agency buyers will request a 'go-see' or audition of a model or actor. When the buyer has narrowed down their selection, they may 'call back' several models or actors. This is not a guarantee of work. However, it does mean the talent are one step closer to securing work. When talent find that they are not being called, it may simply mean that there isn't a great need for their particular type-their look or skills, or perhaps the combination of their look with their salary requirements places them outside the requirements of most buyers.

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Finding Work

coming soon...

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Telephone Dialer

The dialer calls talent based on specific criteria entered into the agency computer. It then calls the talent's home number or pager. However the dialer has several important limitations.

The dialer needs a few seconds of silence after a person responds in order to operate effectively. This means after someone answers the phone they may not hear anything for several seconds. DON'T HANG UP! The dialer is merely identifying whether or not it has reached a person or a machine. There will be a tone and then the verbal message will begin.

Models must inform all of the people in their household that this machine may be calling. Otherwise, they will think it's a crank call and hang up, thus preventing models from hearing about important jobs.

If someone else picks up the phone and some of the message has already played, simply press * and the message will repeat.

Another limitation of the dialer is that it will not leave a message if the models outgoing message is longer than 30 seconds in length. Long music clips that go on and on will prevent the models, once again, from hearing about important jobs.

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What ages does AFFINITY represent?

AFFINITY represents all ages from Babies & Toddlers to Sophisticated Seniors. Please note: if a child is under 6 years old the agency will only accept picture submissions with a description of their personality and special qualities/ abilities. Minor children must have entertainment permits. The website link for information on permits is at http://www.dir.ca.gov/DLSE/ChildLaborPamphlet2000.html#53 . For locations and phones of the nearest offices, go to http://www.dir.ca.gov/DLSE/offices.html

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Where does AFFINITY Represent?

With offices in Los Angeles and outside assisting agencies in San Francisco, Chicago and New York, AFFINITY can locate models all over the USA. AFFINITY represents Tradeshow and Fashion models who work throughout the world.

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Celebrity Models:

Celebrity models are used to create an image for a company and its product or service. AFFINITY represents Superstar models who've become celebrities and celebrities from other fields who also perform as spokespersons for various products and companies.

AFFINITY represents superstars from the fields of athletics, entertainment, business and the arts. AFFINITY also represents relatives of famous individuals such as royalty and political figures.

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High Fashion Models:

High Fashion models can be seen in Elle, GQ, Vogue, W and many others as well as in runway shows for haute couture or designer collections. They also model in catalogs, print ads and television commercials for designer, cosmetic and other glamorous products.

Ultra high fashion models have looks that are either extreme, unique, sophisticated or exotic. European markets are prone to more extreme looks of the ultra high fashion models which appeal to the very trendy, avante garde, fashion conscious consumers.

Other high fashion models have a more accessible look that falls between ultra high fashion models and general fashion, but usually have at least one feature that gives them a memorable look. These models have the potential to become celebrity or super-models because of their widespread appeal.

High fashion models are tall. The women are usually between 5'8 and 5'11 and usually wear Misses sizes 8-10. Most female high fashion models are between 13 and 25. Very few female models maintain high fashion model status beyond these ages, however, there are some exceptional models who continue into their 40's.

Male high fashion models are often between 14 and 35 years.

Potential Runway Models must have experience or be willing to train in Runway Walks including: quarter turn/pivot, Stationary half-turn/pivot, Swing/reverse step, Walking half turn/pivot, three-quarter turn, full turn, one-and-a-half turn, two half pivots, Mannequin turn, Carousel turn, European turn, Sport turn, Mannequin modeling turn, Bridal turn. Also training in how to ascend and descend stairs, hand gestures, how to remove a garment on the runway. Runway models must have an attractive walk that shows: good carriage, light yet secure step, relaxation, control, style, a good sense of rhythm and fluidity. Runway models may also need to learn to dance along the runway. AFFINITY represents Runway Models both in the U.S. and abroad in London, Paris, Milan, Munich, Hamburg, Madrid, Tokyo, Mexico City and Sydney. If a model is qualified, AFFINITY will set up contracts for him/her in Europe, Asia or South America. Runway Models may also find work in Fit Modeling, Showroom Modeling and Informal Modeling.

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FASHION VISA ISSUES

We cannot pay for your trip into the USA. We also cannot pay for housing or other accomodations for foreign models. Additionally, we cannot assist you in entering the U.S.A. by registering as your employer with the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

You can also travel to other countries under our mother agency agreement. However, you must pursue appropriate Visa, working papers, vaccines, etc. in order to work in South America, Europe or Asia.

You must obtain a work visa from the I.N.S.

You should seek the H Visa or the J Visa.

The INS can be found at the following location: http://www.ins.usdoj.gov/graphics/index.htm

For a list of office locations in the USA follow this link: http://www.ins.usdoj.gov/graphics/fieldoffices/alphaa.htm

For general info call INS customer service at: 1-800-375-5283.

 

INS Los Angeles District Office

Information Services

300 N. Los Angeles Street

Room 1001

Los Angeles, CA 90012

 

San Diego District Office Location:

Mailing Address:

USINS San Diego District Office

880 Front Street, Suite 1234

San Diego, CA 92101

 

Street Address:

USINS San Diego District Office

U.S. Federal Building

880 Front Street, Suite 1234

San Diego, CA 92101

 

San Francisco Office Location:

ALL APPOINTMENTS, Detention & Deportation, Fingerprinting, Human

Resources, SAVE and Support Services:

630 Sansome Street

San Francisco, CA 94111

Mailing Address:

INS San Francisco District Office

630 Sansome Street

San Francisco, CA 94111

415-705-4411

 

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General Fashion Models

General Fashion models have universally appealing good looks but are not high fashion enough to qualify for high fashion editorials. You may see these models in middle-of-the-road magazines like Redbook and Good Housekeeping. General fashion models are often seen in catalogs and general clothing advertisements for companies like Mervyns, Sears and Target. Most general fashion models appear to be between 18 and 25. Also included are Contemporary Women (who appear between 28 and 44) and Classic Women (who appear over 45).

The majority of men in this category range from 18 to 28 years old and may be seen in underwear and bathing suit ads. Those men who appear between 25 and 35 model sportswear and formal wear. Men who appear between 32 and 45 often model business clothes.

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Commercial Print Models:

Commercial Print models represent products other than beauty or fashion. They are used in print ads, packaging, sales displays, product catalogs and live promotional work. There are two types of commercial print models: Straight and Character.

Straight Commercial models can range from average (real people) to attractive types. They are chosen because they appeal to specific consumer markets based on age, marital status, income, etc.

Character Commercial models most often appear in print ads and television commercials. These models can be funny-looking or offbeat characters. They are often exaggerated examples of real people. Character models may also be impersonators or imaginary characters such as Uncle Sam or a leprachaun.

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Petite Models

Petite Models wear sizes 3-7 Petite and are usually 18 to 25 years old. Petite models appear in catalogs, print ads, tv commercials. Occasionally, they may receive high fashion print assignments.

Petite models are coming more into vogue now but it is still a struggle to get them into runway shows. Our recommendation for petites: start looking for other petite models and then as a group, approach petite clothing companies and create showcases. Naturally, you'll need to hook up with a choreographer but these can be found at other runway shows or by asking manufacturers or local clothing outlets like Macy's who they use.

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Child Models:

If you or your child is under the age of 18, an Entertainment Permit must be acquired before any promotion or placement can be done by AFFINITY Model & Talent Agency. You may register for this permit at: Industrial Relations Department Labor Commissioner. In Northern California the address is: 30 Van Ness, S.F., CA or 100 Paseo de San Antonio, San Jose, CA. For more information, please go to Babies, Kids, Teens.

We encourage you to send pictures of your infant, toddler or child under 6 years old. We do not take walk in appointments for children of these ages. If your child is seven or older please call for an appointment.

Please understand if you do receive an appointment that due to the busy nature of a talent agency, you will not necessarily be given a great deal of time to discuss your child. The process is very quick and efficient. If you need more guidance, grooming, coaching, or management you may wish to contact any number of "personal managers" located in most major cities. Be warned however, that there are unscrupulous managers who charge up front fees but provide no real guidance. Schools should be the only entities that charge up front fees. Personal managers usually require 10% of all jobs you acquire. A less expensive method is to read up on the modeling field. If you seek more information about kids and modeling you might want to contact the best model resource we know, Models Mart (212-944-0638) in New York. They have great books and tapes on the subject.

If we like what we see, we will send you an email non-exclusive contract. You will then need to take several good photographs of your child (4 is best), place them on a laser copier and copy as one 8 1/2 by 11 sheet. Make at least 10 copies. You should fill out the contract, copy it and send back the original with signatures. Also send the 10 copies of your pictures.

If your child is over 4 years old we strongly recommend that you thoroughly investigate all of the modeling schools, seminars and training in your area. Ask yourself these questions:

What is the modeling experience and training of the teacher offering classes?
Are they offering you an opportunity to attend one class for free to evaluate?
Are they giving you real techniques that teach you how to perform on camera and onstage?

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Parts Models

If a model has particularly appealing body parts, e.g. hands, feet, back etc. they must

take snapshots or Polaroids of these parts, date the photographs and place name on photographs. These shots are needed for buyers who seek Parts models. If the parts are superior in appearance, the model will need to locate professional photographers to photograph the body parts.

Hand models have attractively shaped, smallish hands with no blemishes or skin problems. Nails have a healthy color, are without curves, ridges, blemishes. Cuticles must be perfect. Nails must be natural, not sculpted. Most hand models wear a size 6 1/2 to 7 1/2 glove and 4 1/2 to 5 1/2 ring. Male hand models wear an 8 1/2 to 10 glove.

Leg models must have beautifully shaped, straight, slim, long legs with attractive feet and without veins, scars or other blemishes.

Female foot models must have graceful, flawless feet with attractive ankles and lower legs. They must wear size 6 narrow or medium without blemishes, protruding veins.

Teeth/smile models must have perfectly straight, white teeth with a beautiful smile and attractive lips. Gums must be healthy, pink and not extremely large.

Beauty models are used for face and hair products. They must have a well-proportioned, attractive face with symmetrical features, good bone structure. Skin must be flawless with fine, nearly invisible pores. No blemishes, no circles or darkness under the eyes. Eyes must be wide-set, expressive and beautiful. Lips are neither too thin nor too full. Neck should be long and slim. Hair should be healthy, thick, shiny, easy to manage. Hair should be virgin (not permed or colored). For men a strong jaw line and an even hairline are preferred.

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Plus Size Models

Plus or large size models wear Misses sizes 12 and up. Plus models have well proportioned, full figures. Plus sizes wear between size 12 and size 18. Measurements are between 34-25-37 and 40-31-42. If your size exceeds these measurements you are not qualified for Plus size modeling. If your waist is not at least 9 inches smaller than your hips and chest, you are not qualified for Plus size modeling.

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Swimsuit Models:

Swimsuit models need an attractive slender figure with a 34B bust or larger. Models with naturally darker skin or a light tan are preferred. The models figure should have smooth, attractive countours. Swimsuit models should not have bony or angular shoulders, visible rib cage or hipbones. Their figure should be well-toned and without cellulite or excessive muscles. Swimsuit models usually have figures that are slightly rounder or more athletic looking than typical fashion models.

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Lingerie Models:

Lingerie models need an attractive figure with a full 34B bust or larger. Skin must be flawless, without much body hair, freckles, moles or scars. Models should not be overly tan. The model's bones in the rib and chest should not protrude. The model must not be very muscular.

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Nude Models:

Nude or Figure models work in print work, videos and films. Affinity Models & Talent, Inc. does not represent Adult Film actors or models and is not involved in the adult video or magazine industry. AFFINITY only represents nude models for tasteful photography with a professional aesthetic. This includes art photography, fashion magazines, and mainstream mens magazines. Nude models range from 18 to 24 with few exceptions. Figure models must have an excellent figure with a well-developed bustline. Looks range from wholesome to sexy to mildly exotic.

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Trade Show and Promotional Assignments

Tradeshow models will have several people directing their assignment. The models may only encounter one of them but its important to know who these people are:

Advantages of Trade Show & Promotional Modeling

If you feel you are assertive, outgoing, and friendly, we want you on the AFFINITY team. The advantages to this kind of work are:

  • Flexibility-no set hours to get locked into.
  • Meeting lots of new people
  • Minimum pay 10.00 an hour
  • Unique environments-from Stadiums to Convention Centers to Nightclubs, you'll find yourself in different, exciting situations.
  • Great resume builder for other, more prestigious, talent assignments.

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Submitting Pictures To Affinity Talent

To submit pictures for AFFINITY Agency representation, CLICK HERE.

Submitting professional photographs

Affinity asks all models to submit pictures in one of two ways
.
First, models/actors may email pictures at info@affinitytalent.com. Your pictures must be sent in ".jpeg" format only. Pictures should be minimum 4.5 inches wide by 4.5 inches high. Pictures should be saved in 72dpi (dots or pixels per inch). Do not send .gif, .tif, html, bitmap (.bmp) or Photodeluxe (.pdd) files. Please do not send "zip" files. If sending more than 5 different pictures, send them in multiple emails. Along with email pictures talent must include a resume in Microsoft Word format only. All pictures sent in these formats or any format other than .jpeg or .jpg will be rejected and deleted. If sending more than 5 different pictures, send them in multiple emails. Please include in your email: Hair and eye color, Height, weight and body measurements, shoe size. Please use feet and inches in measurements. Along with email pictures talent must include a resume in Microsoft Word or .txt format only. Do NOT send .jpg format images of your resume. For an example of proper resume format see the Resume page.

If talent wish to mail pictures or do not have access to a scanner, they may mail application in with pictures and MSWord or.txt formatted resume on floppy disk to AFFINITY 8721 Santa Monica Blvd #27, West Hollywood, Ca 90069.

Talent not need to send a portfolio yet. If AFFINITY agrees to represent talent the agency will work closely with them to build their portfolio. Of course, if talent already have one, they are welcome to send copies of their photos.

If AFFINITY coordinators believe the models look is marketable they will return a message via email or phone within 2 weeks indicating Agency interest. If you do not receive a response within 2 weeks, please consider this non-response a statement of non-interest at this time.

If AFFINITY coordinators indicate interest, via email or phone, they will request that talent print out the Model & Talent Agency application, fill it out and send it to the agency. This application must be accompanied by 10-20 copies total of several pictures or comp cards and a resume. Remember: Total resumes: 20, total Pictures: 20. Do NOT submit original pictures. AFFINITY will not return original pictures and they will not be used for castings. The resume must not have model/actor‚s home address or phone number, or any other agency name. Talent must type "AFFINITY Model & Talent Agency" on the top of the Resume.

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Submitting Amateur Photos

The email pictures talent send do not need to be taken by a professional photographer. Of course, if talent have professional pictures, they are welcome to send them; however, the agency prefers to receive emails of simple snap shots or polaroids which give an accurate idea what talent look like. Have a family member of friend shoot a roll or two. Use half of the film to get a good head shot and half to get a good body shot. Color photography is preferable.

Affinity asks all models to submit pictures in the following manner:

First, models/actors may email pictures at info@affinitytalent.com. Your pictures must be sent in ".jpeg" format only. Do not send bitmap (.bmp), .gif, .art, .tif, or Photodeluxe (.pdd) files. Do not send MS Word picture files. Please do not send "zip" files. If sending more than 5 different pictures, send them in multiple emails. If you are on AOL or any other email service that 'zips' pictures before sending, send only ONE EMAIL PICTURE AT A TIME! Along with email pictures talent must include a resume in text format only. This means the resume SHOULD NOT be in an attachment but rather, is IN the actual TEXT of the email. This means no pdf, word, or other resume attachments will be accepted. You must copy your resume and PASTE it into the text of your email. Once again, no resume attachments please!

Please note: we will not return these photos. Also: if we do not respond to you within 30 days of your email, this indicates we cannot represent your look at this time. Please do not call or email and ask if we received your pictures. Due to the busy nature of an agency, this is the only acceptable procedure.

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Advice on Amateur Photographs

The following photographs are unacceptable:

Blurry

Dark

Overexposed

Too far away (too much space above and below models body).

Too close (distorted model face or body)

Bundled up in thick winter clothing

Baggy clothing

Standing with boyfriend/girlfriend/gathering of family/friends.

AFFINITY cannot appropriately evaluate a model's potential with these types of photographs. Remember, these pictures are for the buyer, so that they can SEE you.

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The following photographs are acceptable:

Clear facial features

Head to foot

Head to waist

Head and chest

Head and shoulders

Profile face

Profile body

Clothing includes: Sporty, casual, swimsuit, formal, clubwear etc.

Remember to always include your basic measurements with your photos. If you are female your measurements must include your age, height, bust, waist, hips, hair color and eye color. If you are male your measurements must include your height, chest, waist, inseam, hair color and eye color.

You should send at least one clear head shot and one clear body shot. Your head shot should clearly show your entire face, and your body shot should give us a good idea of your build and body type. We suggest that women wear a swimsuit and men a swimsuit or boxer shorts.

Without appropriate photographs AFFINITY will have difficulty helping models find any assignments beyond promotional modeling. If models have higher aspirations, they need professional pictures. Photographers can be found in the following magazines, Callboard, Dramalogue, Backstage West etc. and on the internet.

AFFINITY works with many photographers around the Bay Area of Northern California.

Where to Send Pictures:
Email the same at info@affinitytalent.com Your pictures must be sent in ".jpeg" format only. Do not send bitmap (.bmp), .gif, .art, .tif, or Photodeluxe (.pdd) files. Do not send MS Word picture files. Please do not send "zip" files. If sending more than 5 different pictures, send them in multiple emails. If you are on AOL or any other email service that 'zips' pictures before sending, send only ONE EMAIL PICTURE AT A TIME!

 

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Scanning and Sending Email Pictures

If you do not own a scanner, copy and print out the SCANNING PICTURES directions on this page. Then, take your best original pictures to a large copy center or business store. Usually these companies will charge a small fee to scan your pictures onto a disk.

Images should be sent in .jpg format, in 72 dpi, 350 pixels high or 5.5 inches high minimum. Pictures should not be larger than 12 inches high. You may send .jpgs in original Photoshop format or .jpg. format.

Indicate the order in which you would like pictures to appear by naming each with your name and the number of appearance on the website. e.g. Mary Johnson #1 will appear first, Mary Johnson #2 will appear second and so on. Indicate on paper accompanying your disk or include your zed card with the following measurements:

FEMALES:
Height
Hair Color
Eye Color
Chest
Waist
Hips
Dress
Shoe

MALES:
Height
Hair Color
Eye Color
Suit
Neck
Sleeve
Waist
Inseam
Shoe

 

Where to Send Pictures:

Mail pictures and resume with self-addressed-stamped envelope to:
8721 Santa Monica Blvd #27
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Email the same at info@affinitytalent.com

Agency Acceptance:

If AFFINITY coordinators like a model's look, they'll contact the model in under 30 days. If a model is not contacted in 30 days it means that the model's look is not suitable for the AFFINITY agency at this time. This means AFFINITY may have several models represented by the agency that already have a similar look or that, based on experience, te agency does not see a need for a particular look.

Please note, AFFINITY will not respond to phone calls regarding whether a model's pictures have arrived. Due to the high volume of work, agency staff do not have time to respond to these calls. If a model's package has arrived it will be filed. If it hasn't it will be returned by the post office.

For prospective fashon models:

If, after you have sent your pictures and we are interested in sending you to other areas around the USA or outside the USA we will be requesting additional snapshots of you.

Please keep in mind the following points when taking your pictures:

  • DO NOT wear make up or hairspray
  • DO NOT pose
  • Background should be a plain white wall
  • Use Regular 35mm color print film (any camera)
  • Wear a one or two piece swimsuit

We will need the following kinds of snapshots:

FROM THE SHOULDERS UP:

Forward with no smile (hair up & hair down)2

Forward with smile 1

Both profiles (hair-up) 2

Total: 5 shots

FROM BUST UP:

Forward with no smile (hair up & hair down) 2

Forward with smile 1

Both profiles (hair-up) 2

Total: 5 shots

FULL LENGTH:

Forward no smile 2

Both profiles (hair up) 1

Back shot (hair up) 2

Total: 5 shots


Please note: we will not return these photos. Also: if we do not call you within 30 days of your shipment, this indicates we cannot represent your look at this time. Please do not call and ask if we received your pictures. If we did not they will be returned to you by the post office. Due to the busy nature of an agency, this is the only acceptable procedure.

Our mailing address is as follows:

AFFINITY Model & Talent Agency

8721 Santa Monica Blvd #27

West Hollywood, CA 90069

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Exclusive and Non-Exclusive Representation

AFFINITY represents actors and models EXCLUSIVELY and NON-EXCLUSIVELY.

For non-union talent, i.e. actors and models, the agency provides a general NON-EXCLUSIVE contract, lasting a minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 7 years.

AFFINITY provides EXCLUSIVE contracts only for union actors and models who have demonstrated high marketability in the print or fashion industry.

AFFINITY also provides EXCLUSIVE representation to models for whom the agency has found modeling contracts outside the USA.

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Frequency of Photograph replacement

Please remember, after a model or actor is accepted, AFFINITY must receive updated email jpg pictures whenever a model has a substantial change in their look hair color, length, weight gain or loss over 20 pounds, etc) OR once per year, whichever comes first.

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APPLICATION ISSUES:

Date of birth

Your date of birth is important, not to identify you as too old or too young for any particular job-your look will determine that-but AFFINITY needs to verify your age for agency records and tax purposes. AFFINITY searches its database within age ranges. It helps to have a general idea so that we can search for you. e.g. a buyer requests talent 'who appear between 30 and 45.'

Social Security number

AFFINITY doesn't need your SS# until the agency finds you a paid assignment, but it would avoid extra phone calls. For now its optional. The agency must have your social security because it sends information to the IRS about our independent contractors and so that you may receive a 1099 form to pay your taxes at the end of the year. As an independent contractor, you must pay taxes on any funds you receive from AFFINITY at tax time.

Ideal Salary

Remember when recording your Salary requirements, these requirements are for tradeshow and promotions only. The agency computer will not pull up your name if the job pays under what you say you require. You will never be given less than the appropriate rate quoted to the buyer minus our commissions/fees. For example, if you say you are willing to accept $10.00 an hour on a promotional job, that does not prevent you from making $2,000.00 a day on a commercial print job or $25 an hour on a different promotion. It merely gives you more job options. So, if you're open to making less than you want, you will have more calls for work. Obviously, someone who accepts the $10 to $15 an hour will get more calls than someone who accepts only $25 dollars and up.

We will always pay you the highest dollar amount we can elicit from our buyers. If you accept a $10 dollar an hour job on one assignment that does not prevent you from getting the $25 dollar an hour assignments. In reality, when people work on the lower paying assignments we like to express our appreciation by recommending them for MORE higher paying assignments when we can.

Timeliness of Payment

Models and Non-Union Actors:

AFFINITY sends talent funds in check form within 10 business days of agency receipt. Agency buyers generally pay all monies owed between 30-60 days from date of invoice. Why does payment take so long? Unfortunately, because non-union actors and models do not have a governing agreement with these companies and because they are not covered by union regulations, payment policies are often determined by the hiring companies. The invoice generated by the agency is seen, not in terms of the 'starving artist's need to pay the rent' but rather as a bill. Sadly, just as with a phone or utility bill, these buyers reserve the right to pay after 30 days. It is CRUCIAL that talent understand this concept. The agency WILL NOT ADVANCE MONIES OWED. AFFINITY is very aggressive about collecting payment but only after the 30 day billing term has elapsed. Talent must understand that even after 30 days, the Agency has 10 business days to mail the talent checks. Therefore, the agency will not return calls regarding payment unless the 45-day payment period has elapsed.

On shorter assignments the payment is received by our agency within 30 days of invoice. Please recognize that the Agency wants the commission as much as the talent want their payment. AFFINITY will do everything in it's power to pay talent as soon as possible. After all, our commission comes with your pay.

Special Note: there are occasionally special circumstances in which the marketing company policy is to pay within 60 days of invoice.

Union actors

By law, the agency should receive checks on union work within 5-7 days following a union job. The agency should have the check mailed out within 3-5 days after receipt. AFFINITY requests union actors sign a consent form allowing the agency to receive talent funds. This allows the agency to function effectively and avoids agency calls to actors requesting the required 10% commission check.

Pursuing Delinquent Payments

AFFINITY has never had a non-paying buyer. Ocassionaly however, AFFINITY agency has pursued collections vigorously in order to receive payment. Remember that talent are paid after AFFINITY MODEL & TALENT, Inc. receives the check from the buyer and all moneys have cleared the bank. If, for any reason, AFFINITY does not receive payment for an assignment that talent complete, then the talent will not be paid. AFFINITY MODEL & TALENT, Inc. is not responsible for non-payment but the agency will do its best to retrieve all moneys owed.

When buyers are delinquent in payment AFFINITY takes clear cut steps to pursue payment. If regular collection calls do not produce payment, AFFINITY contacts the licensing authorities, bonding companies and membership associations in the buyers city and state. Should these actions fail to produce payment, AFFINITY will then assist the talent in collecting through small claims court.

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Travel and Housing accommodations

Unless AFFINITY's buyers have a job in a very remote location or they have specifically requested an individual model's services (instead of a local model close to the location), travel expenses will not be reimbursed. In practice, travel expenses beyond one hour are often reimbursed on most work except for tradeshows and promotions.

When filling out the TRAVEL section of the agency application, remember the travel question regards non-reimbursed travel and housing.

Obviously, more jobs are available the more a model can travel out of their area at their own cost.

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Model/Talent Availability

Most actors and models have scheduling conflicts due to work, school or other talent commitments. However, the greater a model/actor's availability, the greater the chance of finding them work. Remember, 95% of all auditions take place on weekdays during the day.

If you list only certain days available our computer will only pull up your name when the audition days match your free days.

Personal information Updates

If a model/talent's information regarding look, hair color, body size, location etc. changes, email the agency at info@affinitytalent.com so we can update your computer record.

Flaws and Markings

AFFINITY asks many specific questions about body type, markings, flaws, surgical scars, etc. because a model/actor may be called upon to wear clothing that will highlight some of these body parts and many buyers are particular about their requirements.

Limitations

We don't want to place you on any inappropriate modeling assignments. This will help us avoid placing you in any kind of strenuous assignment. Occasionally, buyers do ask models to carry a box of product from the truck to the tradeshow or promotional booth. You should prepare for this possibility.


Measurements

If you don't know your sizes please buy a cloth tape measure at any convenience store. Have a friend measure you. Remember, do not wear bulky clothing when doing measurements. Also, the waist is the most narrow portion of your midsection. The hips are measured by the widest portion of the hip and the tape goes around the largest part of the buttocks. Don't fool yourself here. You must be accurate.

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Union or non-union Actor Representation

Affinity is working on affiliating with talent unions. In the meantime, AFFINITY also represents a large pool of non-union talent. AFFINITY also represents a large pool of non-union talent.

Languages

Multiple languages are extraordinarily helpful. Affinity has received assignments where the actor/model was required to speak Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, German, etc.

Computer skills

Computer skills can be helpful for the tradeshow industry. AFFINITY SF is located near Silicon Valley and there are many opportunities at the computer tradeshows.

Unusual Talents

Unusual talents are important. AFFINITY receives outrageous requests for talent, for example: 16 English guardsmen who cannot laugh no matter how funny someone is. This was a promotion with British Airways. They promised a plane flight to anyone who could get the "guards" to laugh. So, in addition to films, television and radio, actors and actresses may find unusual work with AFFINITY. Everything is important, from double-jointed to 'can-touch-nose-with-tongue.'

The AFFINITY Composite Card

AFFINITY Composite cards are 2 sided cards that carry the AFFINITY Logo and design. They are 5x 8 and contain five pictures of the model chosen by our talent bookers. When a model has enough diversity in his/her portfolio, s/he may request placement on an AFFINITY Composite card. All costs, however, are paid by the model, as these cards are a form of marketing for the model's services. The model pays a local printer who carries the AFFINITY Logo and Composite template.

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Working with AFFINITY Buyers

A talent agency thrives because it generates buyers and matches them with talent/models. If a hiring company (e.g. casting, production, marketing, advertising, photography) hires a talent agency to find a specific model or actor, and then--once the job has ended--the model re-contacts the hiring company, the model is behaving unethically.

If a talent should choose to take advantage of the AFFINITY agency by working directly with a buyer to whom the AGENCY referred them for a job assignment, that talent will never work with the Agency again. When talent behave in so unethical a manner, they effectively terminate their contract with AFFINITY. The talent may get some short term satisfaction but they usually find that their other leads have dried up. Less money, less opportunity.

In real terms this means, ethical models/talent do not release their phone number or address to the hiring company or its representatives. Actors/models do not negotiate hours, days, rate of pay, schedule with the hiring company representatives. All negotiations must be passed on to either AFFINITY's main office or one of AFFINITY's Field Managers to relay to AFFINITY.

When asked to give a phone number, talent must give the number of AFFINITY. No exceptions.

Non exclusiveTalent are free to work independently of the agency. However, after receiving an assignment from the agency, choosing to work directly with that same company that AFFINITY has written to, called, marketed, negotiated and worked with, etc. is a form of stealing. These models have stolen AFFINITY's effort, advertising dollars, income, time and business.

Models/actors must make the right ethical, moral choice when these situations arise. And they do come up. Marketing reps, fashion designers, photographers on a job that AFFINITY generates for talent, will approach and ask the models to work for them directly. They may even offer more money. If they request services for a future job, refer them back to our agency.

Occasionally models receive an offer of employment from a different buyer who spots them at a photo shoot, film production, tradeshow or fashion assignment that Affinity has arranged. At this time, consider this: would the model have received the second job offer had the agency not referred them to the assignment?

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Multiple Agency Representation

When an actor/model signs a non-exclusive contract with a talent agency, they are always free to work with other agencies and buyers they find through their own efforts.

Some models/actors are represented at more than one agency. However, when AFFINITY sends talent to an audition, the talent must use only the AFFINITY agency name. All AFFINITY assignments are confidential. Any model or actor found dispersing agency information to other outside entities including managers, other agencies, casting directors, etc. will immediately be terminated from representation.

Occasionally, a non-union actor or model who has multiple agency representation will receive a call from several talent agencies regarding the exact same job assignment. The ethical behavior at this time is to accept the assignment from the FIRST agency that made the call. Even if a second agency offers more money (by taking a smaller commission), the proper behavior is to go with the first agency that calls.

An actor/ model may have accepted a job assignment, only to receive a call from a second agency with a different, but higher paying assignment. The proper behavior is to contact the first agency and ask if they can find another talent to fill the job. If the job is less than 72 hours away, and the agency cannot find a replacement, the proper response is to stick with the first job assignment. To violate this code of conduct is to terminate the agency representation.

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Why Models and Actors Seek Agency Representation:

1.Time: A model/actors time is valuable. The agency saves them time by finding job assignments for them.

2. Phone, fax, email, shipping: The agency absorbs all costs.

2.Advertising Expenses: A talent agency spends tens of thousands of dollars on local and national advertising. This includes trade publications, newspapers, magazines as well as brochures, gifts, entertainment and meals for buyers.

3. Contract Negotiation: When talent negotiate with buyers, negative feelings can often arise on both sides. The experience may leave everyone with a sour taste. Agencies are experts in contract negotiation and implementation. A Talent agency knows all of the things that can go wrong on a job and creates contracts that address all possibilities and that hold up in a court of law.

4. Collection Services: What can one actor or model do when they don't receive payments from a buyer? It's an uphill battle. An agency, however, can use the strength of its reputation in the industry, and its legal resources to battle any company that withholds payment.

5. Industry Connections: A talent agency develops a vast network of industry relationships that no one actor or model could possibly create. A talent agency has the tactical advantage when it comes to getting things done for models and actors.

6. Union Affiliations: A licensed agency with film, television and radio union affiliations can find auditions faster, and help non-union actors find union assignments that may eventually lead to union membership.

7.Licensing: A legitimate agency is licensed by the government. This protects talent from unscrupulous 'managers' and 'consultants' who claim to be agents but are not watched by any governmental agency.

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Why buyers use talent agencies

1.Easy access: The agency has phone, cel, pager, fax, email, shipping address and full time staff

2. Fast Response time: The agency can negotiate, email, fax or ship pictures immediately.

4. Multiple choices for talent: The agency has hundreds of choices.

5. Constant influx of new fresh faces: There will always be a need for new talent

6. Quality control: The agency weeds out inappropriate individuals before they see the buyer.

7. Turnkey solution: The buyer only makes one phone call, explains details and negotiates one time. Production and marketing firms want to deal with an agency that handles all the contracts, releases, scheduling, payments etc. They don't want ten annoying phone calls every other day from independent actors/models wanting to negotiate individually, or complaining about payment.

8. Aesthetic and Demographic Preferences: A buyer cannot go to a temp service and request ten blondes over 5'9" for a promotion. They cannot request people who appear to be African American. With a talent agency, they can make these choices.

9. Pre-filtering: avoids mismatch between buyers and talent. Avoids embarrassment of rejection.

10. Experience: The agency has years of hard-won knowledge to make the correct choices.

11. Dependability: The agency can arrange back up talent and are ready to respond to potential problems.

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Agency Commissions

For every job assignment given to models the agency receives a 20% to 25% commission. This is the legal limit and standard in the modeling industry. For film, television, internet (moving action) and radio work, the agency standard commission is 10%.

Scams and Rip-offs

People often come to AFFINITY talent agency asking whether or not a particular school, management company, consultant or agency is involved in a "scam" or is attempting to rip off consumers. Due to the busy nature of a licensed talent agency, AFFINITY staff members do not have time to investigate these concerns. However, we can direct you to ask your own pertinent questions of the individual, group or school in question.

  1. Do they have professional references, i.e. are there other respected entities in the talent field that will endorse this individual or company?
  2. Are there individuals who have gone on to success as a result of these groups efforts? If so, are you allowed to contact those individuals regarding their experience?
  3. Does the group have any evidence of helping others achieve success?
  4. Does the group allow you a trial period or a sample of their classes or training? (not necessarily a deal-breaker but shows their confidence in their training).
  5. Are they charging more for photography then you would be charged by outside photographers? The average in San Francisco is 2 to 3 different looks on 2-3 rolls of film for $250-$350.00. This includes contact sheets so that you can choose the pictures you wish to print but excludes the price of actual prints and copies).
  6. Are they a licensed talent agency? (they don't have to be in order to help you, but if they are you won't pay ANY fees.)
  7. How long have they been in business?
  8. Are they listed with the Better Business Bureau? If so, how many and what kind of complaints have they received at the BBB?
  9. Do they have a business license in the city they are doing business in? Call the city business license unit.
  10. If they are a personal manager: are they asking for up-front fees? Why? A true manager gets their fees as a percentage of work they help you find. Otherwise they should be considered a school or consultant.
  11. Finally, do you or your loved one have a great deal of training, experience or ability to learn? If so, you may be able to pick up a great deal of information in the course of a career at a licensed talent agency. On the other hand, a competent school may instill the grace and poise that often do not come overnight. Sometimes the stability that a consultant or school offers gives talent a secure feeling and confidence to advance in an often difficult industry. Talent agents are in the business of finding jobs for talent so they have very little time to groom or nurse talent along. A Talent Agency is often like an Emergency Room and handling 50 crises at once. There is no time for hand holding or worrying about bruised feelings. Consider this if you are new to the talent field and want a more gentle entrance into this industry.

We hope this has helped you to make an intelligent decision regarding schools, managers and consultants.

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Model Performance Expectations

AFFINITY's reputation is only as good as it's talent. The agency's business is only as good as it's reputation. If a model or actor does anything to tarnish the agency's reputation, they cause AFFINITY to lose business and jeapordize the future work of hundreds of other actors and models. They also put themselves out of work.

In a business sense, the actors and models are AFFINITY's product and service. AFFINITY's ability to generate work is dependent on the actions of our models and talent. This is why AFFINITY emphasizes Professionalism From Start To Finish.

If you aren't the best, neither are we. This means:

  • When a model/actor accepts a booking by phone or acknowledges by email, they are committed to the booking. It is not the agency's responsibility to remind the model/actor of the booking. If the actor/model believes they are missing important information, it is their responsibility to contact the agency immediately.
  • Punctuality is crucial. Talent may be dismissed from a booking if late. Talent MUST be at a booking 15 minutes early. Talent must take into account all traffic conditions and leave early. No matter what, talent must be on time. Talent must always expect traffic jams, accidents, weather problems. Talent must leave early enough for a job so that even with these complications they will still be 15 minutes early. This includes time for parking, finding the booth, studio, etc.
  • Looking like a model is crucial. Talent must always look impeccable. Well groomed hair, make up, pressed clothes.
  • Courtesy and customer service: Remember, even if the buyers behave rudely, (which they rarely do)the talent must rise above it, and call AFFINITY to address the problem ASAP. AFFINITY talent must be more professional than the people they work with. Talent are representing Affinity Models and Talent. The agency will not allow anyone to abuse it's models or talent once we are aware of the problem. Likewise, AFFINITY will not allow any of it's models or talent to be rude in any way to agency buyers. Remember, AFFINITY has three buyers:
  1. The Talent
  2. The Paying Buyer
  3. The Customer the Buyer is trying to Capture.
  • Always thank the buyer after a booking.
  • AFFINITY requires actors/models to give a minimum of 72 hours notice for job assignment cancellation. If talent cancel in less time they seriously endanger their business relationship with AFFINITY. AFFINITY understands that talent have families and emergencies. However, due to the abuse of excuses relating to car problems, missed busses and 'not feeling well' AFFINITY will terminate the representation of any talent that cannot verify their reason for cancellation. AFFINITY will not accept car problem cancellations without a valid repair bill from a recognized auto repair shop. Likewise, illness will not be accepted without an actual record of doctors visit on the day of the alleged illness. The same criteria hold for family and friend illnesses. AFFINITY must have verification on medical stationary that the family or friend was in the hospital on that day. AFFINITY will not continue to use or assist any model who cancels with short notice i.e. under 72 hours notice before a booking begins. This is extremely serious because the model/actor endanger what the AFFINITY Agency offers: professional, dependable, beautiful representation.
  • Models/actors do not discuss rates of pay with buyers or other talent. Why? Often models from different companies may be on the same job, or may have different job descriptions. One model may in fact be receiving more than the other models on a job and this may cause problems if everyone discusses pay. Additionally, talent may find that a front line manager has no idea of the financial contract and may mislead them on what s/he thinks the talent should receive. This creates confusion, distrust, and needless anxiety. The agency considers pay to be confidential information. If they ask, refer them to the agency. Also let the Agency know.

 

  • Although models are creative artists, they understand that modeling is intimately involved with SALES. The model is using their appearance and creative influence to create higher sales volume or leads. They put their creative talents to use in a way that influences the greatest number of potential customers. AFFINITY MODELS & TALENT don't just "look good." They are ASSERTIVE, OUTGOING, FRIENDLY AND SALES ORIENTED. The models personality is just as, if not more, important than their visual presentation.

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Timesheets and Vouchers

While most Marketing companies keep their own records of time, we want you to keep a separate record as well. In addition to the Marketing sign in sheet and our Field Manager's sign in sheet you should write your hours down for your own records. This way there are no discrepancies when it comes time to make payment. We will not review hours with you over the phone and tell you how many hours you worked last month. This is a waste of precious time and energy necessary for booking, invoicing and generating new jobs.

We ask that you fill in Time In, Meal Time out and In (this should be 30 minutes on any assignment over 5 hours) and Final Time out. Put your total hours and have the Marketing Officer sign off. If they are not available, have your Field Manager sign off.

Finally, each week before Monday at 11am fax the Time Voucher to our office at 323-843-9696 or 415-449-3638.

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Independent Contractors and Employees

AFFINITY is a Talent Agency, not an employer. If a model or actor only seeks an employer, they should not register with AFFINITY. AFFINITY REPRESENTS (i.e. provides a talent brokering service for) Independent Contractor Talent.

An independent contractor is an individual who acts as their own employer, pays their own taxes, and buys their own insurance. An independent contractor cannot qualify for unemployment compensation, workers compensation or ask for penalties from government agencies for overdue payments. Please note: if a model/actor falsely claims AFFINITY as their employer, knowing that s/he is an INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR, the agency will discontinue its business relationship with that talent.

For this AGENCY SERVICE, AFFINITY receives a commission. AFFINITY also provides a check writing SERVICE (i.e. AFFINITY deposits one check from the paying buyer into the agency's business account and then distributes individual checks to models and actors from that account). In order to work with AFFINITY an actor/model must verify that they are an independent contractor, by filling out the Independent Contractor Verification form.

AFFINITY does not pay any taxes for talent. Actors and models receive money in a lump sum. Talent determine their own taxes at the end of the year. AFFINITY doesn't subtract taxes or other charges because the agency only represents independent contractors. Talent must pay their taxes on this money at the end of each calender year, If a model or actor receives over $600.00 from Affinity job placements, the agency will send a 1099 Form detailing payments to the talent by February 15 of the following calender year. AFFINITY will also report their income to the IRS. Talent must treat their taxes on this income seriously.

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Professional Photography

Actors and models must find local photographers to shoot their image so that they may present samples of how well they photograph to agents. Good local photographers can be found in several ways.

  1. The Yellow Pages
  2. The Internet
  3. Local Theater Arts Magazines or Newspapers
  4. Local College or Community Photography Classes: Contact the Fine Arts Department and find out the process for volunteering for student photographers. Best source for free photography
  5. Art Colleges Photography Departments: Best source for free photography.

AFFINITY discourages the use of "mall" type photography studios that provide 'glamour' shots. These are not considered 'quality' photographs by the fashion, print or film industry. If you have already paid for these photographs, however, AFFINITY will accept them as initial examples of your look.

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How to Evaluate A Photographer:

Fashion Photography tends to cost $90.00 per 36 exposure film roll. Sometimes studio rental costs are added, other times it is part of this cost. Make up and hair styling for the 'shoot' can cost around $50-$75.00. An average photo shoot uses two rolls of film and allows the model to change looks, hair and clothing so that s/he has two separate and distinct 'looks.'

Thus the mathematical calculation is: $90.00 x 2 rolls of film=$180.00. Makeup=$75.00. Average Photoshoot cost: $250.00.

Theatrical and Commercial Photography tends to cost between $150.00 and $350.00 for "headshots."

Film, Television and Theater actors need only one dramatic and one commercial "headshot." Makeup generally costs $75.00. Total cost of Commercial or Dramatic photoshoot: between $225.00 and $350.00. Commercial Headshots are generally smiling, bright, clean cut images. Dramatic Headshots use more shadow, mood, and have more attitude.

Certainly, top photographers can command much higher prices for this work. It is important that the model not be misled. A photographer should have no hesitation about showing his/her work to the model. Maintain a respectful attitude when dealing with photographers however. While you may be paying for their work, photographers often consider themselves artists and are sensitive to being 'shopped' by models.

Sometime after the photoshoot, photographers will present the model with a 'contact sheet' which shows small prints of the photoshoot. The model will then choose from these pictures the ones s/he wants blown up to full size. Average cost of each original 8x10 picture is $25.00.

Models often request the negatives of their photoshoot. Photographers, however, often reserve the right of ownership of the negatives. Some photographers will sell the negatives for a price. The photographer considers this their property and their artwork. It would be in the models best interest however, to have the photographer sign a contract that does not allow them to use the pictures at any future time without the models consent.

Following the creation of several 8x10 originals, the model will place these originals in her Model Portfolio.

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Where and How to Get Pictures Printed

Actors and Models (who have enough pictures for an AFFINITY Composite) must then find a Printing or Lithography company to make between 100 and 200 high quality reproductions.

Some of the least expensive Lithography companies are located in Los Angeles and New York. It is cost effective to mail original pictures to these locations. Lithography is usually complete within two weeks and the least expensive cost $75.00 for one head shot and $180 to $300 for 100-200 composite cards.

 

 

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