How to Create a Professional Modeling Portfolio
This post was last updated on July 14th, 2020.
Great visual presentation is important in all professions and industries. But when it comes to modeling, it’s an absolute must. Models need an impressive portfolio website to represent themselves online and distinguish themselves from others in the field. A high-quality online modeling portfolio can make all the difference - and we’re here to show you how to create one.
Let’s start with some great news: you don’t need to spend a fortune to set up a modeling portfolio website. Even if you’ve never created a site before, you can learn how to make a portfolio yourself using a website builder like Wix. Wix’s tools and guidance to set up an eye-catching online presence that will boost your modeling career.
This step-by-step guide will explain how to create a modeling portfolio, walking you through the various steps, from selecting the right template to showing off your full range of skills:
How to create a modeling portfolio
Decide on your modeling type
Arrange a professional photoshoot
Show your versatility
Choose the ultimate template
Present your best shots
Include high-quality images
Use diverse media
Share all the vital information
Add a contact section
Get personal with a blog
01. Decide on your modeling type
Before you get started on your modeling portfolio, dedicate some time for a bit of soul searching. Pinpointing your modeling type will help you narrow down and focus your portfolio, so that potential clients will be able to easily identify your area of expertise and assess whether you could be the right fit for the job.
If you’re an experienced model, the chances are that you’re already rooted in a specific niche of modeling. For aspiring models, consider which area within modeling you’re interested in and best suited for.
Look into each modeling type and its set of requirements. For example, while commercial models tend to vary in height, size and age, promotional models working at trade shows and other events are normally required to be friendly and approachable.
02. Arrange a professional photoshoot
Your photos are the stars of the show on your modeling portfolio. Make sure to truly show off your skills by investing enough time and effort into a professional photoshoot.
The first step in planning a successful photoshoot is choosing the right photographer. This is best done through recommendations or browsing through photography portfolios online. Ideally, the photographer you hire will be experienced in the field. However, if you’re on a tight budget, you can look for a student or a photographer who’s just starting out in the industry.
Once you’ve found your photographer and arranged a time, make sure to come prepared on the actual day of the photoshoot. This means everything from choosing the right outfits, to practicing your poses and getting your hair and makeup done - preferably by a professional. Remember to sync with your photographer and prepare a shot list beforehand. This will help everything run as smoothly as possible on the day.
03. Show your versatility
While it’s best to be associated with a particular modeling type, when it comes to style and shooting angles, try to present your full range of abilities. Potential employers and scouts want to see versatility and flexibility in models. This is especially true if you’re just starting out and don’t yet have a strong signature style.
Demonstrate to prospective employers that you are capable of working in different types of productions by including a mix of images in your online modeling portfolio. This means photos that vary in style and artistic vision, as well as shots that show off different angles and takes on your features.
04. Choose the ultimate template
Now that you’ve done your photoshoot, it’s time to pick the website template that best suits your needs, style and personality. When considering your options, go for a portfolio template that will help you shine and give you the website layout you need to share your complete body of work.
Once you’ve chosen your ideal template, you’ll be able to fully customize every detail, from the images you upload, to the gallery style and written content. By selecting one of Wix’s professional website templates, you can rest assured that the final result will be pixel-perfect, whether or not you’re a web design pro.
05. Present your best shots
After completing a photoshoot or project, you’ll probably have a huge collection of images to sort through. For a truly professional modeling portfolio, it’s crucial that you only include the work you’re proudest of. A handful of successful photos is better than a never-ending scroll of mediocre ones. Around 10 to 20 images should be enough.
Remember that oftentimes, people who browse your portfolio won’t have the time or patience to look through your entire gallery. Prepare yourself for that by giving prominence to your best shots or to the most prestigious projects you’ve worked on.
In particular, pay attention to the first few images that viewers see the moment they land on your website. Create a striking homepage design that includes a range of eye-catching photos of yourself, in order to demonstrate your skills and versatility from the get-go.
When selecting your best shots, keep in mind that there are a few basic types of photos that you should include in your portfolio: headshots with and without you smiling, mid-shots and full-body shots, possibly in different outfits and locations.
06. Include high-quality images
This point is vital in making sure your modeling portfolio is impressive and effective. Compromising the quality of the images will make you appear unprofessional, and you also run the risk of putting your greatest assets as a model at risk of being overlooked. Don’t let pixelated images come between you and your career.
On top of choosing only the sharpest visuals, use a professional gallery to ensure your images look their very best. The Wix Pro Gallery will automatically optimize your images, so you won’t have to worry about the technical side of things. It will also enable you to customize your gallery layout, add smooth hover effects and choose which shots to emphasize.
07. Use diverse media
Still photos will clearly play the definitive role in your modeling portfolio, but why not keep things interesting by adding different types of media? Show off your full range of capabilities by adding any videos and commercials that you’ve worked on. These can help reveal aspects of your professional demeanor that static images may not.
You can either embed videos directly onto your site or upload videos from external sources like YouTube and Facebook. If you’d like to create a short video yourself, check out Wix’s video maker to put together a few images and video clips that will entice your audience and add a dynamic touch to your modeling portfolio.
08. Share all the vital information
Whether or not you choose to write a resume and upload it to your model portfolio, bear in mind that there are a few essential details that potential employers will be looking out for.
Models are usually expected to share information like age, height and other body measurements, as well as hair and eye color. You may choose to include additional features that are unique and appealing about you (tattoos, acrobatic skills, birthmarks, or anything else that might make a photoshoot more interesting).
09. Add a contact section
What’s the use of creating a modeling portfolio if people can’t get in touch? Make sure that prospective employers or clients can easily reach out to you.
Your contact information can appear as a separate page, in your website footer or as a section within another page, such as your About page. Either way, make sure it stands out and can be found intuitively.
When creating a contact page, include basic details, like your name, business email address and phone number. You can also add a live chat widget so that visitors can contact you easily and get an instant response. Another option is to create a contact form, enabling people to reach out directly on your site.
10. Stay social
We recommend that you connect your social media profiles to your portfolio by adding a social bar to your website. This will offer viewers an additional channel through which to see your pictures. But more importantly, your social pics reveal another side of who you are, by providing a fuller picture of your personality and abilities.
Use professional social accounts if you have them, but even personal accounts can work, as long as they don’t depict aspects of your life you’d rather not share with colleagues and employers. If you have an impressive Instagram account or are in the social media marketing game, you can also set up your Instagram feed to show directly on your model portfolio.
11. Get personal with a blog
Creating a blog is a great way to inject some personality and added value to your online modeling portfolio. It offers you a place in which to share experiences from behind the scenes, tips about fashion and beauty, inspiration and more. In addition, running a blog will offer opportunities to casually promote your site by sharing the link on social media.
If you’re unsure where to start, browse online to find some impressive blog examples by other models and professionals from the industry that you admire.
Online modeling portfolio examples
Want more guidance on how to create a modeling portfolio that will rock the entire industry? It’s time to get visual. As well as reading up on web design tips, check out these Wix-made model portfolio examples and learn from real-life professional models with a fantastic online presence:
02. Hanis Firuz
03. Karlie Kloss
By The Wix Team