Let’s face it, modeling is a numbers game…and those who have the most success typically have access to the most opportunities. Those opportunities, castings, and auditions are predominately in New York City. Other areas with strong modeling markets include Los Angeles, Miami, & Chicago. Even cities such as Dallas, Atlanta, New Orleans, Nashville and San Francisco have their fare share of modeling and acting jobs as well. But what about cities like Charlotte, Wichita, or Memphis?
I recently moved from NYC to Memphis and I had an opportunity to sit down with Paris Chanel, the CEO of The Paris Chanel Agency to discuss her company, the modeling market, and what she looks for when signing a model.
1. Tell me about The Paris Chanel Agency and why you started it here in Memphis. What is your background?
The Paris Chanel Agency is an all-inclusive agency that aims to be a one stop shop for our clients and potential clients. We have been in business since April 2016. Diversity is key for our agency. We have models of all ethnic backgrounds, shapes, and sizes. We pride ourselves on class and professionalism. I started the agency, because I felt that in 2017 the rules of the “typical industry standard model” should not apply.
There are beautiful people of all shapes and sizes and backgrounds and they deserve a chance. I know what it feels like to be left out and put in a box in the industry, so I wanted to present something completely different. I also felt that Memphis was missing an agency that represented full diversity, and I felt there needed to be a change. I wanted to be that change.
2. Since Memphis is a smaller entertainment market, what kinds of work do you typically book here. Name some of your clients.
Print Work, Commercials, and Runway are what are mostly booked in this market.
A few clients include:Wolfchase Galleria, Ashley Home Store, City Gear, Perkins Restaurant, Style Fashion Week, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Premier Glow Milano Menswear, Ampro Industries, Memphis Parent, Memphis Fashion Week, Kimmi & Gabbie, Southland Park & Gaming
3. What is the current state of the Kids and Baby market in Memphis?
The market here for children is very slim, unfortunately. We are trying to create opportunities for them. We also put focus on getting our talent, especially children placed in bigger markets for more opportunity. (One of her models recently walked the runway in NY for fashion week , and two of her models have recently been placed with agencies in LA!)
4. What are the things you look for when signing child talent to your roster?
We look a child with charisma and an outgoing personality. If they already have some experience, that is a plus. They definitely have to have the drive and excitement for the opportunity!
5. What 3 pieces of advice would you give Mocha Baby Dad/Momagers regarding child modeling and acting?
- Do NOT force your child into the industry. Make sure it is something that they genuinely want to do, because they are the ones that have to work the jobs. Clients will not put up with attitudinal children on-set.
- Invest in getting your child some quality images for their portfolio.
- Keep them active and find ways to enhance their craft and add to their skill sets to make them more marketable.
Some child models from The Paris Chanel Agency
Thanks so much to Paris for sharing her story and her advice! I think that any child who starts off as a baby and goes on to work as a child or even teen model or actress will go on a journey and will have ups and downs – no matter where they live. They may also find that they have to move at some point to further their careers and pursue their dreams, but in the beginning local modeling can help a child gain experience and and develop a true interest that can be fostered and improved over time.
And finally some of the cutest kids never book a job or make it big…that is the reality of industry – however that is true about many jobs in the entertainment industry. Be optimistic, yet realistic and enjoy the ride!
You can learn more about The Paris Chanel Agency here.