That’s the title of a job posting I just made for a catalog we produce every year.
For four years we’ve been using the Internet to troll for “talent” for this project, and for four years this week has been both my favorite and most hated. First of all, there’s no reason you should ever call a model, “talent.” If you’re an actor, you’re talent. If you’re a singer, you’re talent. If your main job requirement is sitting on a stool with a vapid look on your face like you’re trying to pass gas without being noticed… you’re not talent.
I’m not sure if it’s kismet that this week also marks the beginning of the most holy of all the schadenfreude holidays, the season premier of American Idol. Besides that show, the largest gathering of people believing they’re something they’re not will be in my inbox. I get on average two to three hundred emails from people trying out for what amounts to be the smallest, most inconsequential modeling job you could imagine. The competition is FIERCE, and by “fierce” I of course mean hi-fucking-larious.
Basically the replies fall into four categories:
1) The Professionals: These are professional models. They’re usually repped by an agency but they spend the time they’re not waist deep in coke in the boiler room of APT pouring over listings like ours looking to make a few quick bucks. Our catalog is not that ritzy, so we usually pass over these people. We also stopped hiring Jellybean Benitez to spin at our shoots in 2000, so the match just isn’t correct.
2) The Semi-Professionals: These are the people who make a steady side business out of appearing in small publications like ours. They are usually very good looking, professional, prompt and polite. These are the people we hire.
3) The Un-Professionals: These are the people who’ve begun to take the comments in their MySpace profiles too seriously. For example: ZOMG U R SOOO HAWT!!!1 Does not mean you’re model material, Andre. This type of person constitutes the vast majority of the responses we get. They don’t have head shots, they’ve got party pictures. They don’t have measurements, they have body types (don’t apply to a fitness shoot if you describe your body type as, “squeezable.”) I get more pictures of dudes in baseball hats flexing in their parents’ den than I care to remember (yes I know that was your parents’ den, unless you’re going to tell me that you’re now collecting commemorative plates).
and of course my favorite:
4) The Pervs: I get at least ten unsolicited nude pictures every year. No, I’m not excited about it. The people that send me naked pictures are the type that spend their waking hours pawing hook-wristed through the casual encounters sections of postboards. Their bodies sheen with day old flop sweat off of some back seat hook-up they’d finagled, these people are unabashedly willing to show off their perceived gorgeousness. The simple fact that the pictures they’re sending us are the same they used to try to score a SWFBWMTWFQSSSDSM last Thursday is grounds enough for instant deletion.