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Author Topic : Personal Manager V.s Freelance 
Frea_Felidae

Thread Starter / Model
City: Nottingham
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Oct 8, 2014
Posts: 2
Views : 1614  Oct 13, 2014 4:25am

Hi everyone!
Just thought I'd ask peoples opinions on this subject.
Recently I have become involved with a personal manager, she's really nice and professional and is helping me find work and advertise myself as a model so to speak.
She works by me referring photographers to her when they show interest in working with me. I am the only model shes currently working with as shes not solely a model manager shes a talent manager and works with dance and music acts too.
I know my manager isnt an agent but im curious; I have noticed a lot of photographers wont touch an agency represented model with a barge pole, what are the reasons for this?

Why do so many models work freelance when there are opportunities to work with managers and agents?

Frea x

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 Ace



Photographer
City: Reading
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Apr 12, 2006
Posts: 6205
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 5:13am

The answers to this are many, varied and diverse but in sweepingly generalised terms, photographers and most models who use the internet are amateur and don't see the benefits of an agency model.

They think that an agency model is an unnecessary tier of expense and possible complication. If they can book a model on the internet, why do they need and agent or agency?

To a large extent these internet photographers are correct. They get models at a price they can afford. They may suffer the odd no-show but if they choose wisely that's minimal.

A true agency model will usually be more reliable and if their model no-shows the agency should be in a position to supply another similar model in a short space of time. You expect service and reliability with an agency model along with established model skills.

Where this often breaks down is that the agency is not experienced, does not provide a high standard of models or reliability. In recent years these operators have got agencies a very bad name.





Ace, Ace baby! on www.acestudios.co.uk

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 Diceman199

Photographer
City: Uxbridge
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Jul 21, 2008
Posts: 1372
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 5:58am

Ace has pretty much hit it on the head.

The only thing i'd add is that if a photographer contacts you and expresses an interesting in working with you then what actual value (to you) is the agent adding?

After all you're already talking to them and being considered for whatever work they have in mind.

All you have to do is check their references and say yes if you're interested in the work offered and terms are acceptable.

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Keltica

Photographer
City: Twickenham
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Oct 5, 2010
Posts: 28
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 6:31am

Unless you are earning over 100K a year, then having an "agent" is just vanity, and is like hanging a weight around your neck, it just slows you down and gets in the way.

There is nothing an "agent" can do that you cannot do yourself.



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TSS

Photographer
City: Rhoshill, Cardigan
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Oct 2, 2008
Posts: 1374
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 12:53pm

There is also the managers 'fee'. The manager does not work for free so either you or the photographer is paying them a percentage. I have only worked once with a model/manager. I paid £45ph but found out later that the model only charged £20ph. Manager walked off with £25ph for what?
Last time I ever used a managed model.

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 Peter_Birch



Photographer
City: London
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Jun 10, 2010
Posts: 1081
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 1:06pm

A model working through an agent or manager puts up a red flag for me, mainly for the reasons given above but also because I prefer to deal with the person I'm actually going to be working with rather than having a third party constantly looking over my shoulder.

To take an example from earlier this year, I found myself with a choice of two models, one managed, one freelance. I'd judge the models equally good. For four hours working up to nude the offers were as follows -

Managed - either £50/hr + a signed contract limiting my right of use for the pictures and guaranteeing a percentage of any income derived from them, in perpetuity, or £300/hr + additional charges for a complete buy out.

Freelance - £25/hr without restrictions.

Guess which model got the job...

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 NickG



Photographer
City: Ealing
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 16, 2004
Posts: 2600
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 3:39pm

quoting post from TSS:

There is also the managers 'fee'. The manager does not work for free so either you or the photographer is paying them a percentage. I have only worked once with a model/manager. I paid £45ph but found out later that the model only charged £20ph. Manager walked off with £25ph for what?
Last time I ever used a managed model.


Just out of interest, why is this?

Presumably you felt that the £45 ph was reasonable enough to agree to. Why did it become wrong because someone else was receiving a part of it?

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 NickG



Photographer
City: Ealing
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Aug 16, 2004
Posts: 2600
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 13, 2014 4:25pm

quoting post from Frea_Felidae:

Hi everyone!
Just thought I'd ask peoples opinions on this subject.
Recently I have become involved with a personal manager, she's really nice and professional and is helping me find work and advertise myself as a model so to speak.
She works by me referring photographers to her when they show interest in working with me. I am the only model shes currently working with as shes not solely a model manager shes a talent manager and works with dance and music acts too.
I know my manager isnt an agent but im curious; I have noticed a lot of photographers wont touch an agency represented model with a barge pole, what are the reasons for this?

Why do so many models work freelance when there are opportunities to work with managers and agents?

Frea x


Reading your post, I am not clear what your Manager/ agent does for you. Presumably you pay her a fee, whether on an hourly rate or as a percentage of work that she finds you. The question to you is whether what she brings you is worth what you pay her.

For models getting work from the internet, most of their time will be taken up by finding work, probably around 60% of their working time. A few will be able to fill their time so completely that it is worth passing some of their income to someone else to find work for them. If that is you, and you are doing well enough that you can pass some income to a third party, then go for it.

Alternatively, if you are not good at selling yourself and the commission that you will pay is less than the extra revenue that you will gain then again, go for it. If, on reflection, and as others have suggested, it is something of an affection ("I have an agent/ manager you know") then put it down and walk away.

The down sides, apart from the cost, are relativity simple and pretty much as laid out in your OP. Firstly you say "She works by me referring photographers to her when they show interest in working with me". That means that you are losing control of your income stream. Similarly, as Ace pointed out, many of the photographers on here are amateur. They will take the process of booking a model differently to a professional or advertising agency. If they have a question about what a model will do they want to ask the model and get an answer from her. A verbal assurance from an agent is not really worth the paper it's written on.

Your question is "Why do so many models work freelance when there are opportunities to work with managers and agents?", I would turn that round and ask, Why employ an agent when they it is not entirely necessary?

(Just out of interest, and I could very well be wrong, but I suspect that the OP was actually made by the personal manager, just by the way that it read.)

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 Diceman199

Photographer
City: Uxbridge
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Jul 21, 2008
Posts: 1372
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 14, 2014 5:04am

quoting post from  NickG:

Just out of interest, why is this?

Presumably you felt that the £45 ph was reasonable enough to agree to. Why did it become wrong because someone else was receiving a part of it?


Because when the agent is charging MORE than the model for simply arranging the booking then there is a problem.

The model is making less money than they might be able to charge directly. If you'll pay an agency £45 per hour then you'd be happy to pay the same model £30 an hour directly.

So the model gets 50% more money and the tog pays 33% less simply by dropping out the middle man who actually contributes very little to the whole process.

It's about value for money.

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TSS

Photographer
City: Rhoshill, Cardigan
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Oct 2, 2008
Posts: 1374
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 14, 2014 5:31am

quoting post from  Diceman199:

Because when the agent is charging MORE than the model for simply arranging the booking then there is a problem.

The model is making less money than they might be able to charge directly. If you'll pay an agency £45 per hour then you'd be happy to pay the same model £30 an hour directly.

So the model gets 50% more money and the tog pays 33% less simply by dropping out the middle man who actually contributes very little to the whole process.

It's about value for money.


Thanks Diceman for answering the question for me. The other thing was I never met the manager just a two minute chat on the phone which was a basic introduction. It was much later after the shoot that I met the model again 'out of work time'. She has discovered from another photographer that the manager was taking more than she earned for a shoot. I confirmed my prices with her. She 'sacked' him by all accounts.

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 Diceman199

Photographer
City: Uxbridge
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Jul 21, 2008
Posts: 1372
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 14, 2014 5:58am

I work at a TV and Film studio (IT Manager) and we have a casting company on site here. They charge from 10 to 30% depending on booking duration, numbers booked etc for the extras they supply.

In your case the agent was charging over 55% which is extracting the michael somewhat

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sparky101020

Photographer
City: Leamington
Country: United Kingdom
Member Since: Jun 17, 2009
Posts: 216
RE: Personal Manager V.s Freelance Oct 14, 2014 6:56pm

When discussing a potential booking I want to deal directly with the model.

With an agent under any guise there is the risk of getting to the shoot only to find significant differences between what I had discussed and what the model understood was required.

Financially so long as the photographer is happy with the rate being paid the split between the model and the agent is irrelevant to him/her.
However I would be uncomfortable if I knew the agent was getting as much or more than the model for relatively little work because the model was unaware of typical rates.


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