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Modeling For TV Commercials

Updated on April 5, 2013

Character models portray real people

Character modeling, also known as real-people modeling, is available in almost every market and is often more accessible than fashion modeling. Character models portray real people in all areas of advertising and TV commercials, as well as in industrial training films, in music videos, and as real models. Think about any career field of interest and a publication or TV program probably targets that audience. And where there's a magazine or a TV show, there are advertisements. A real-person model can be a teacher, florist, health-are worker, a vivacious grandmother, or a young mom with diaper woes.

One of the great things about character modeling is that experience, height, weight, and classic features are rarely factors in determining whether a model is hired for a job. Most important is that he or she has the right look for the role. Kate Moss may have all the modeling experience in the world, but if the job is a print ad for a hospital that features a typical-looking female doctor, it would be difficult for Kate to fit the image.

Character models have to be skilled at expressing different emotions through their facial expressions. They benefit from having strong acting skills, especially for booking TV commercials. If an aspiring model is interested in pursuing character modeling work, she or he may would like to consider taking acting classes or on-camera classes (classes that teach on-camera techniques, speaking, working your best angles, and chaaracter development and projection) to develop those essential acting skills.

Although character models generally don't make as much as fashion model, this still can be a lucrative area. A lot depend on what kind of jobs you're doing. As with fashion models, print advertising booking pay better than editorial booking. Television commercial also generally pay well

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Casting For TV Commercials

Commercial model agents role

A commercial agent handles models who don't fall into the traditional fashion-model category. They book models for commercial work (print ads, TV commercials work) as opposed to editorial or artistic work. A "theatrical head shot" is an 8X10-inch photo of an actor or models head and face given out to casting agents on auditions to help them remember the models they've interviewed.

No other area of modeling offers more opportunities for real people than television modeling. The need exists for every age, type and ethnicity. Household products need homemakers to help sell them, copier machines need businesspeople, bologna needs cute little kids, and the guy who gets sand kicked on him at the beach needs to look kinda nerdy! Even men who look like Santa Claus (or women who look like Mrs.Claus) can find work doing holiday commercials.

Television work is available just about everywhere, in cities large and small. Locally produced commercials, like those you see for car dealerships and othe local retail and service establishments, all provide work for local models. (Usually these commercials don't have the budget to fly models and actors in from around the country.) As is the case with advertising print work, though, the bookings for large national commercials take place in the big cities.

Bookings for television commercials generally handled by specialized agents who handle only TV; many large agencies have TV departments. (In some smaller markets, an agency might not have formal departments but still handles all types of bookings.) A models regular agency may be able to refer her to someone. If you don't have one, ask any acquaintances who do TV work who represents them. Oherwise, call the reputable agents in your area to find out who handles this kind of work. If and when you are invited for an interview, be prepared to be auditoned on-camera. Source: Roshumba Williams with Ann Marie O'Connor

TV/Cable commercials

How to Become a Successful Commercial Model
How to Become a Successful Commercial Model

An excellent book for aspiring model talent that shares the casting secrets of top agents and the authors personal experience in finding tv/cable commercial assignments.

 

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    • Cynthia Haltom profile image

      Cynthia Haltom 4 years ago from Diamondhead

      I wouldn't have the patience for a commercial, this is something that someone else should do. Nice lens,

    • mariacarbonara profile image

      mariacarbonara 4 years ago

      Didn't know about this. Great lens

    • profile image

      Ajeet 4 years ago

      I would love to model for commercials :)

    • ATTHED LM profile image

      ATTHED LM 4 years ago

      cool lens

    • WriterJanis2 profile image

      WriterJanis2 5 years ago

      I love that these kind of models don't have to fit into the so-called typical model look.

    • profile image

      SmallFishy 5 years ago

      Thanks for the informative overview, don't forget to add http://www.hollywoodnorth.com to your resources.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @CathyTraveller: CathyTraveller, the reason you never really thought about "real people" models is because we as consumers are exposed to literally thousands of images from the various media outlets on a daily basis(TV/Cable, Print, Internet, Outdoor ads)...thanks for visiting and commenting. I appreciate it.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @dellgirl: dellgirl, I'm glad you found my lens informative...and "thank you" for visiting and commenting. I appreciate it and have a great week!

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @livingfrontiers: livingfrontiers, thanks for visiting and commenting...I'm glad that you found the information valuable. Appreciate it.

    • profile image

      livingfrontiers 5 years ago

      what a great site you have created here...so much value! thanks for the great amount of information!

    • profile image

      dellgirl 5 years ago

      I learned a great deal here, I never knew about this before. This is a really nice lens, thank you for sharing.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @Thrinsdream: Cathi x, The term "real people" refers to the model talent "portraying" a Nurse, Housewife, Mechanic, Doctor of Medicine, Teacher, people we encounter on a daily basis as opposed to a Model that sells clothing, beauty products and glamour lifestyle featured in various entertainment publications such as Us, People and Vanity Fair. Thanks or visiting and commenting...appreciate it!

    • profile image

      CathyTraveller 5 years ago

      That's very interesting. I'd never really thought about the 'ordinary looking people' models.

    • Thrinsdream profile image

      Thrinsdream 5 years ago

      I would love to know the difference between models and "real people", have always pondered that one. Another interesting article that I thoroughly enjoyed. With thanks and appreciation. Cathi x

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @BlogsWriter: daisybeam, I am glad you found the information useful and relevant...models that are cast for TV commercials auditions with dozens of other talented models.

    • BlogsWriter profile image

      BlogsWriter 5 years ago

      I have always wondered how it is - to work with real models and beauties.

    • Bill Armstrong profile image

      Bill Armstrong 5 years ago from Valencia, California

      short and sweet

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      very informative lens!

    • goo2eyes lm profile image

      goo2eyes lm 5 years ago

      i don't have the looks to be in commercials. thank you for sharing this business lens.

    • profile image

      entertainmentev 5 years ago

      I learned so much! I may have to contact an agent and get started. I would love to be in commercials.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @bhavesh lm: bhavesh, you are so and the modeling industry is so large and diverse in its need for talent that there are a phlethora of roles for actors/models that portray a 'real-person" look and make it look believable.

      Thanks for liking and commenting.

    • bhavesh lm profile image

      bhavesh lm 5 years ago

      Your lenses are a wonderful peek behind the scenes of the world of modeling. Seems like character modeling is a great way to make a career for someone with acting talents but may not fit the traditional "model look." It may also be a stepping stone for someone who wants to move into an acting career.

    • chocsie profile image

      chocsie 5 years ago

      Great, informative lens! I've definitely learned a lot about modeling for TV commercials and that's something I'm starting to get interested in. Maybe in the next few years....

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @justholidays: prosperity66, modeling for tv commercials is an excellent opportunity for aspiring models because of the need for model talent that portray different characters in locally produced ad campaigns.

      National spot adertisements are more competitive because of the talent and productions costs are determined by geography. Thanks for visiting and liking and I hope you have a wonderful Holiday Season!

    • justholidays profile image

      justholidays 5 years ago

      Sure that this lens is of high interest for those who'd like to apply for playing a role in TV commercials.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @anonymous: chicandsavvy, thanks for liking and commenting on my Lens...appreciate it!

      The modeling industry as a whole has a lot of work for aspiring models who would like to work in TV commercials. Most television commercials are produced locally, so this gives model talent an opportunity that would be extremely competitive in larger markets like Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, and Miami. Thanks for visiting, commenting and liking. Have a great week!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Lots of good intel here and in your other practical modelling lenses. I like.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @Give-A-SmArt: The real people modeling technique used by many ad agencies that promote consumer household goods use this technique to build a relationships that potential consumer can identify with.

      Thanks for visiting and commenting.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @collierlewisjew: Hi collierlewis_jewelry, no need to wait until your next life...several of the large agencies like Elite Model Management and the Ford agency has an Elegant dept. for model talent that is 35 and over.

      Thanks for visiting and commenting. Have a great week.

    • Give-A-SmArt profile image

      Give-A-SmArt 5 years ago

      Interesting and useful lens! It reminds me for a book which I read recently - "Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy", where some commercial methods are explained including real-people modeling technique.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 5 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @collierlewisjew: Hi, you do not have to wait until your next life to model...several of the large agencies such as Elite, Ford and Wilhelmina have an Elegant dept. for models that are 35 and older. :) Thanks for liking and commenting. Have a great week.

    • collierlewisjew profile image

      collierlewisjew 5 years ago

      Great lens! Maybe I will be able to model in my next life!! =)

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      Hi SereneSea, TV modeling is not as competitive as one might think because of the number of television ads that are produced in cities both large and small. Cable tv has added thousands of opportunities for models.

      The most competition comes from national spot ads that are distributed to the top 25 markets in terms of population. Thanks for your visit and comment.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I think modeling for TV is a great career though there is lot of competition.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @AngelaDaun: Hi AngelaDaun, thanks for liking and your comment...appreciate it.

      Have a great week!

    • profile image

      AngelaDaun 6 years ago

      Great lens!!

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
      Author

      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @anonymous: Thanks for your feedback...it is greatly appreciated. TV modeling can be an excellent launching pad for aspiring models. Television commercials are produced in all size cities...from Peoria to Grand Rapids.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Another brilliant and informative lens on TV modelling! Well done. :)

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @santaallen: Hi santaallen, thanks for stopping and leaving a comment. As you probably already know, many retail businesses have "Christmas in July" sales that employ Promotional models and Print models for TV commercials and in-store promotions.

      Good luck with your new website and self-promotion ad campaign!

    • profile image

      santaallen 6 years ago

      Very nice! Yes, Santa Claus is in demand all year too.

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @Infact: Thanks for stopping by and I liking my lense...the modeling industry has evolved quite a bit in the last decade, particularly for aspiring models who can use the plethora of modeling sites to "get their face and name out there"...which is a common theme when launching a modeling career.

    • Infact profile image

      Infact 6 years ago

      I like your lense, very interesting!

    • Phillyfreeze profile image
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      Ronald Tucker 6 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

      @bkarsono: Thanks Budi, I appreciate you stoppng by and liking a few of lens...hope you have a great week.

    • bkarsono profile image

      bkarsono 6 years ago

      Pretty cool lense.