So I was just thinking about something and it made me angry. The first thing I decided to do was post it to RiotACT.
So 5 years ago, I was 13 and I was young and naive (still am :P) and wanted to get into modeling.
I saw an advert for Victoria’s Models and phoned them up. I was so excited, they really had be believe they were going to make me heaps of money.
So the next step was to go to their ‘office’ for an interview. They told me that I would make something like $300 an hour per shoot and more for bikini. They strongly encouraged me to join up but to join up – I had to do a $500 ‘course’ with them.
They never asked for my parents permission.
I really don’t think it is right for them to manipulate a 13 year old girl like that. It makes me wonder how many other young teenage girls they’ve tricked. They never ever asked to speak to my parents, they didn’t tell me to bring my parents to the interview. Why? Because my parents would have seen straight through their plan.
So $500 later, I was at this ‘Course’ at a low rent function room. I learned nothing at this ‘course’ where the ‘teachers’ came up to 45 minutes late. All we did was talk about things that should have come up in the interview anyway.
I remember feeling like it was a complete waste of time. But i put it to the back of my head as I thought now I would be able to join this agency.
They then called me into an interview (no parental discussion of course) and said I needed to fork out $800 for a portfolio. I struggled to save $500 for the course, so I gave up, disappointed.
Sure, this might be normal, I don’t really know. But as I was 13, I believe they should have contacted my parents to discuss these things. I also believe they should have explained i needed to pay another $800 for a portfolio AFTER the course. Yes I know a portfolio is needed for modeling, but I was only 13, I had no idea.
I believe they knew I had no idea and saw me way to make quick cash. I feel like they have taken advantage of me.
I’m feel angered and cheated and I would just like to warn anyone with teenage daughters that aspire to do modeling to stay away from this company.
UPDATE: We’ve had this response:
12:25 pm, 14 Jun 11
Hi Modelling Girl
I’m sorry you felt you were misled by our agency. I would like to respond to a few things I believe are incorrect in your post. We would not have quoted $300 per hour or more for bikini work. We rarely do swimwear and our rates have been largely unchanged for years (and are not $300 per hour). We certainly would have encouraged you to attend a modelling course if you were interested in modelling, because that’s how we train up our new models.
We would never discourage any person, particularly a minor, to attend an interview without a parent present. In fact, the assumption would have been that you would attend with one, given you were 13 years old and too young to drive. There is no ‘plan’ for your parents to see through. We are honest and up front about everything regarding getting started in modelling and pride ourselves on not promising more than we can deliver.
You would have attended the course at the Hellenic Club I assume, where we have run our courses for over ten years. If you are suggesting you attended a 30 hour long course with 15 experts on various topics, at the age of 13, and you didn’t learn anything, I find that somewhat surprising. We have always offered a 100% money back guarantee on our courses which entitles you to a refund if you feel you did not benefit from the course and enjoy yourself.
Regarding a portfolio, we have never charged anything close to $800. We have worked with various photographers over the last 16 years, and our portfolio packages have increased over time, but even at today’s prices, none are as expensive as $800. Five years ago, they were about $400 for a basic portfolio, which is all we’d suggest for a 13 year old. I can assure you we are not out to make a quick buck off a 13 year old. I would welcome your phone call to clarify some of the facts which appear to have become distorted over time.
We are Canberra’s longest established agency (16 years), have a large and loyal client base and over 300 models on our books. Every time we engage with a new model or course student, we aim to make the experience a positive one, as it’s important to the longevity of our business. We wouldn’t have been around this long if we were about a quick buck. Canberra is too small a town! We work very hard every day, to make our agency an honest, professional and reputable one and I only wish you had approached us directly with your grievance, rather than putting up a largely inaccurate post. Please do feel free to contact me directly – 6282 8700. Victoria