By Kathy Zucker • September 15, 2013
I am incredibly fortunate to have children considered beautiful by current modeling standards. I fell into modeling – my oldest child was discovered at age one in a Manhattan doctor’s office by the owner of one of the top child modeling agencies, FunnyFace Today. Since then, my three kids – ages 7, 5 and 1 – have modeled for Pampers, Target, Volkswagen, Anne Geddes, Hanna Andersson, BabyTalk and Parents Magazines.
In the last couple of years, my kids have gotten invited to participate in increasingly exclusive photo ops. They were photographed alongside celebrity kids at a Bryant Park party hosted by Warner Brothers and Marvel Comics, appeared on the Today Show and will be in a TV ad for a local museum.
— Kathy Zucker (@kathyzucker) September 15, 2013
Why do I accept unpaid gigs when my kids are professional models? Because it’s a great way to build their portfolios. Television spots are incredibly scarce and hard to get for print models – typically the agency has fewer slots for television versus print, so your kid has to be at the absolute top of his game. In six years of modeling, my kids have only auditioned twice for TV, and they were not selected either time. So when a television opportunity for a prestigious brand comes up, you bet I am going to jump on it.
Modeling is hard work. It take many go sees to establish relationships, figure out the best times of day to maximize the odds your kid takes a great photo, and just learn the ropes of how to stand and what to wear. Even for established models, there is no guarantee that a day of go sees will turn into bookings. Parents Magazine published a great article detailing model pay rates and go see schedules – it states, “Your child is going to work only if you’re committed.”
In recent months, I have been honored to be approached by major brands looking for my help casting photo shoots for television and print ads. In addition to casting my kids, they also tell us to bring friends. They know my company, the Metro Moms Network, hosts expos that draw families from all over the New York/New Jersey metro area, so it’s easy for me to source kids who are the right age, gender and ethnicity. Yesterday, Kenneth Chen Portraits sent a professional camera crew to photograph story time at the Hoboken babyGap – my friend’s son performed like a pro, so we are going to send his photos from the shoot to FunnyFace. Who knows, a star could have been born yesterday in Hoboken.