What pops into your head when someone says ‘model’—tall, size 6, long hair and the ‘it’ look? Think again. LFW met with Victoria and Cindy from Canberra based Victoria’s Models and discovered that modelling is not just about height, weight, and a pout. By Aine Dowling
Victoria’s Models is Canberra’s longest established agency. Owner Victoria Schnabl purchased Ink Spot Promotions in 1994, and with her prior experience with another local modelling agency it wasn’t long before Victoria’s Models became a separate entity. Victoria’s Models now finds models, actors and extras, and voice overs for all media outlets and, chances are, in a TV or newspaper advertisement, you’ve seen Victoria’s Models.
Victoria’s Models looks for ‘ordinary’ people—just like you and me in fact. “We’re not looking to launch modelling careers here,” says Victoria, “we’re primarily looking for people we can work with on a regular and ongoing basis for a variety of work here in Canberra. We look for all ages, sizes, heights, weights, ethnic backgrounds etc., and that’s because some people are more suited to commercial work, and others to fashion. The main things we look for are good grooming, excellent presentation, and personality plus—which is really important, and we work with all our new models to help them build confidence, and find the right media outlet for them.”
For the most part the models—which includes everyone who works with the agency regardless of whether or not you’re actually a model—will attend the work by themselves, with juniors accompanied by a parent or guardian. “We’re always very careful where our models go, and we always ensure safety and security for our models,” says Victoria, “especially our juniors who would never be sent somewhere that we didn’t think was safe, so their work could be with Westfield or a large commercial company. The bulk of our work is from our large client base that we’ve built up over time.”
Age is no barrier at Victoria’s Models, with the youngest at three years and the oldest 86 … and still modelling, and the only height restriction is for catwalk models who are generally a minimum of 170cm (approximately 5’ 7”). And, in Canberra, the work is very diverse and requires a wide range of people for advertisements who actually look like real people who would work in their department or store.
Victoria’s Models offer weekend workshops and one week modelling courses, style workshops, staff training, and pamper parties, where a group of young friends can get together and have a team of models and stylists teach you some tricks of the trade. Pamper parties are for older teens and best in groups of 10. They will also help you build a portfolio working with stylists and professional photographers.
Victoria’s Models is a great start for young teens (girls and guys) and older people looking to re-enter the workforce after a long break—you can get styling tips, learn what to wear and how to wear it, and get professional help with hair and make-up. And you’ll walk into that next interview or job, or do that next presentation, with confidence and ease.