On stay and direct bookings

For a model it’s good to travel and see clients all over the world. Therefore, a model can go ‘on stay’, which means go live in a city for a longer amount of time (like a month or longer, whatever’s good for his/her career and depending if a model works well in that city). When models are on stay, they often live in a model apartment (an apartment owned by the agency) with other models. However, models can also arrange their own accommodation. After a couple of years of traveling and living in one too many model apartments, I personally prefer not to live in a model apartment. They are often dirty, small and since you share the house and your bedroom with numerous models, not a lot of privacy, too.

On my trip to Milan, where I stayed for about a month, I stayed in a tiny room which I shared with a girl who didn’t like to shower and who smoked a lot. And I’m not a big fan of cigarettes. Luckily, my roommate agreed with not smoking in our room, so that helped a lot already, smell-wise ;-) After a few weeks I could move into another room where my friends were staying, so sharing a room wasn't too bad then. It was actually a lot of fun with all that girl-talk, watching Netflix in our pyjamas and of course going out together!

Tiny room in Milano
Room no. 2: having fun with the girls

Compared to Athens, I’ve lived like a princess in Milan. The apartment, or basement actually, where I lived in was absolutely disgusting. All over the walls and ceiling you could see mold and some more mold developing. It was so bad that it actually took my breath and I got a headache after being inside for half an hour. And to my HORROR, there were lots of cockroaches…… I was very sure this couldn’t be too good for my health, so I decided to alarm the landlord. He wasn’t very happy with my complaints and didn’t want to help me out. There were no other rooms available at that moment, so I had no other option than to cook where I pee (take a good look at the photo). 

So, as you can read, model apartments aren’t very appealing. However, if you’re lucky, you can make good friends with other models when you're living together. In fact, in Cape Town and London, I arranged my own apartment with friends whom I knew from living in model apartments.

Our apartment in London
View from our apartment in Cape Town

Direct bookings are bookings that a model didn’t cast for (or casted for once and then the client regularly books him/her directly). The jobs can be in the country that a model is currently in, or the client flies the model in. I’ve been to some exciting places all over the world already! On those moments, modeling is a little bit (or a lot) more comfy with often nice hotels, good weather and good food at the job. 

At work on the beaches of California

Ok so not ALWAYS a nice healthy lunch...

Having fun on my Portugese king size bed

Swimming pool at my hotel in Italy

Sushi and a bath in Porto

Beautiful San Diego

Ola, Mexico !

A little me-time just after work in Cancun


How it all started..

Elite Model Look, so nervous!
A model has and is in fact his/her own business. However, a model is nowhere without modeling agencies. A model always has a ‘mother agency’, a modeling agency mostly in the country where the model is from and lives in for most of the time. I guess the words ‘mother agency’ make sense, because (if you’ve got a good one) they do sometimes feel like your mom/family. They take good care of their models; whether I’ve got good or bad news, I can always call my bookers. Even in the night time. A mother agency arranges a lot for their models. Bookers send their models to castings, arrange tests, make polaroids (more about that later), keep in touch with clients, and of course – book jobs. A model and her booker are almost, if not every day in touch. I call, text or email with my bookers about options, bookings, castings, etc. For me, the contact and communication with my agency is very important. In fact, I just got a really sweet text message from one of my bookers. That made me feel so good!

For me it all started in 2005, where I competed in the Elite Model Look. The EML is an annual modeling contest held by the Elite agencies all over the world. My mom read about it in the paper and she convinced me to participate. So I took some selfies (wow I just realize that selfies exist for a long time already – I guess there just wasn’t a word for it yet #feelingsoold). Anyway. I sent in my photos and eventually I got picked from around 5500 Dutch girls. After several rounds I made it to the finale, where I ended up being in the top 20. I didn’t get signed with Elite and so nothing really happened. At first I was sad, but in a way, when I think about it now, I’m happy that I finished my high school and went to University just like any other girl. I have to say that if I knew back then that I actually did end up modeling I would’ve felt better ;-)

In 2010, I went out with my friend in Amsterdam. It was then I met Jeroen van der Mast again after five years. He used to work for Elite in 2005 and now he is the owner of VDM Models in Amsterdam. He invited me to the office of VDM the week after, where we had a nice chat about the modeling industry. Jeroen and the bookers from VDM decided they wanted to do a test shoot (these free shoots I was talking about earlier on my blog) to see if I could work the camera. After that I got signed with VDM Models. I did some more tests to practice my facial expressions and to build up my book/portfolio.

Now, 3,5 years of modeling on the side, a masters degree and almost 2 years of full-time modelling later, I know how to move my body and make different faces. I have a good book now and I travelled quite a lot, including being on stay in Istanbul, Cape Town, Athens, Milan and London. Those have been amazing experiences for me. I got to know both myself and other cultures/people/cities so much better thanks to traveling. I wouldn’t have want to miss it for the world.


Spring has sprung!

This Easter long-weekend, where we’re treated to a whole three days off work, my boyfriend visited me in London. We began the weekend with a dinner at Inamo, an Oriental fusion restaurant. But not just that, it’s an original, refreshing and fun experience! They’ve got an interactive ordering system, which means you place your order from an illustrated menu projected on to your table surface. And that’s not all! You set the mood with a choice of tablecloth, put the webcam on to take a look into the kitchen, play a game with each other. When you’re done eating and playing, you simply order a cab home with help of the system.

On Saturday we saw all the touristic places: changing the guard at Buckingham Palace, Westminster abbey and the Big Ben. Kim treated himself and me with some new Nikes, which I immediately put on to stroll around in to Shoreditch, this really nice upcoming area. After a coffee and cake we were re-energized and ready to head back home.

Yesterday, for me it was official: spring is finally here! With seventeen degrees Celsius and a clear blue sky it was lovely outside. Kim and I had a nice, long walk (of course with my new Nikes on my feet) to Hyde Park, where we ate our lunch outside on a park bench. Happy days! After that, we were not quite done being the tourists because there was one important thing we wanted to do: walking over the Beatles’ Abbey Road pedestrian crossing.

Sadly, the Easter weekend flew by. After stuffing our faces with food, now it’s time to get back on track and get my ass back into the gym and eat healthy again. In fact, I just went to the gym for a good interval training and some weight training. I feel a lot better already! 

I got my photos back from the test I did two weeks ago in London and the test I did last weekend in Holland. I'm really happy with it!

By Lukasz Suchorab
By Lukasz Suchorab

By Lukasz Suchorab
By Lukasz Suchorab

By Karlien van der Geest 
By Karlien van der Geest


Little update

Hey guys! Here's just a little update of what I've been up to the last couple of days. Last time I wrote about my option in Holland. And well, I got the job! Therefore, I flew back to Amsterdam last Thursday night. Unfortunately I couldn’t spend much time with my boyfriend, because he was going to Berlin for a long weekend to run the half marathon with the Patta running team (his time was 1:35 - proud!). My jobs on Friday and Monday were really chilled. I worked for O’Neill, a brand where I work for regularly.

On a Saturday I woke up early to do a test with a really fun photographer, Karlien van der Geest. She picked me up at home at 7.45am to drive to the location – a really nice loft in Utrecht, a city near Amsterdam.

As usual, first it was time for make up and hair. The theme for the shoot was “denim”; the stylist really did a good job sorting outfits together. I had so much fun with the team! I’m looking forward to see the results, and of course I’ll show you guys the photos here on my blog! I’m also waiting for my photos of one shoot in Cape Town, and the photos of the tests I did here in London. Time to send the photographers a message – unfortunately it usually takes a lot of time for them to send the pictures to the model and her agency. I guess it does take some time to make a selection of the photos that has been shot and then to edit them.

            Outtake from our shoot                                        
Of course, first it was time for make up and hair. The theme for the shoot was “denim”; the stylist really did a good job sorting outfits together. I had so much fun with the team! I’m looking forward to see the results, and of course I’ll show you guys the photos here on my blog! 

I’m also waiting for my photos of one shoot in Cape Town, and the photos of the tests I did here in London. Time to send the photographers a message – unfortunately it usually takes a lot of time for them to send the pictures to the model and her agency. I guess it does take some time to make a selection of the photos that has been shot and then to edit them.

Being crazy with Sjarde, the hma
Having fun on set

Because London has been so busy for me, I didn’t really have much time or energy to do a workout. So last Sunday I planned to go to the gym. Instead, I did absolutely nothing but watch tv, catch up with reading my magazines and cuddle with my cat – it was only until 8 o’ clock in the evening that I scraped myself from the couch to go out and get some food. I did practice my barista skills and made myself a lovely cappuccino. I know it always seems so easy when people make it at a coffee shop, but it actually is quite difficult to make the milk foam perfectly. Here’s the result; not bad, huh?

Cappuccino and magazines
Cold and windy London

I flew back to London again on Tuesday morning. There were storms all over Europe, so I had a delay of 40 minutes. Which is not too bad, compared to a lot of other flights with delays of 3 hours or even worse; cancelled flights. When I arrived back in London I only had one casting to go to before I headed back home to catch up with Julia.

Today I had to conquer the stormy weather whilst running to my castings. I think the rest of the week is going to be quiet because of Easter. This weekend my boyfriend will visit me here in London. I’m soooo excited!


Healthy on-the-go thanks to Mason Jars

No need for unhealthy, processed food with these useful canning jars. Mason jars keep your food fresh and they don't leak into your bag; amazing for an on-the-go meal!


Coffee please!

English tea? No, thanks. Seriously, I wouldn’t have survived last week without coffee. After my last post I’ve still been crazy busy. I’ve been doing lots of castings, one job and two tests with cool photographers. A very busy life I’ve been living here so far, but (next to coffee) the city of London gives me loads of energy!

Sometimes models get free lunch, dinner or drinks at particular places. In London the W Hotel offers a free lunch for models if you’ve got a member card. Normally I never use this free model stuff, but since London is so expensive (4 pounds for a coffee! Whhaaatt?!), I thought; a free lunch never hurt anyone! So Julia and I went to the W and ordered a caesar salad. A model lunch it was indeed. So far my attempt to save some money; after these couple of leaves I needed more food to still my hunger. But only after we took some fun polaroids in the hotel!

Last Friday was the kind of day that I should’ve stayed in bed all day. I got the news from my mother agency that a really good option for a job got cancelled, so I was kind of grumpy all day. Julia and I made plans to have dinner and go out on Friday night and we were very excited to go. But, as I told before, you can never make plans if you’re a model. I got a phone call from my agency in London that I had a test the next day early in the morning. Being professional, I decided not to go out and instead go to bed early. If only I knew in advance I would be wide awake until 3 am…

At 7 am that morning my alarm woke me up. I went to the test, tired as fuck and looking like hell. So on my way to the shoot I picked up a delicious cappuccino, which gave me the energy to be my best in front of the camera. The test turned out to be with a very young, cool photographer. She was really cool and I can’t wait to see the results! Hopefully she’ll edit the pictures a bit to make the bags under my eyes disappear ;-) This shoot actually gave me a lot of energy to enjoy the rest of my Saturday! I went to town with Julia and walked around. Because I’ve been so busy all week, I didn’t go to the gym at all. On Saturday I finally had some “me-time” so then I went. I felt great after a good run and some weight training!
The Big Ben
Working it!

Behind the scenes of one of my tests

Yesterday I had my first job in London; I shot e-commerce for New Look. It was a nice team to work with and with the loud music in the studio my working day was over before I knew it.

On Thursday I’ll probably fly back to Amsterdam for a couple of days because I have an option there. Yaaayyy! I’m super excited to see my man for a bit and to sleep in my own bed for a few days. Sooo, fingers crossed and hope that I book the job!