The “book” is what every model needs to tote around, and it’s supposed to show incredible photographs that enhance a model’s looks and capability in the fashion industry. A great portfolio is not expected when trying to first capture a modelling agency’s eye, but if these experts believe an aspiring model has the “it” factor, the book needs to be built up to the next level.

A model’s portfolio should contain some essential images as explained on the The Balance. The website recommends that a would-be model’s book include the classic headshot, full-length body shot, swimsuit shot, editorial fashion shot, commercial shot, smiling shot and a strong closing shot. This offers a wide variety of options for potential employers to base their decision off of.

It’s also important to remember that a model’s book tells her or his story and should feature amazing work by skilled photographers. The portfolio is never finished and gets better over time as the model improves and is exposed to new gigs and opportunities.

Another expert on the subject comes from here, where the photographer, Pat Yuen, advises aspiring models to avoid including portfolio photos that depict vulgar situations or nudity, bondage, goth images or trashy lingerie. He recommends that photos show natural lighting, simple makeup and good tear sheets. This gives models the chance to show their true range and not distract viewers with flash and over the top props that distract from the most important thing at hand – their modelling ability.Yuen says that most model’s portfolios include images that include dimensions of 9 x 12 inches.

There is also a list of rules for the photographer taking the photos for a model’s book. Adorama.com suggests that the man or woman behind the lens prepare for the model’s shoot. One of these steps is developing a theme to make everyone on set feel prepared and more comfortable. Maybe the hair is the big concept, or maybe the location or ensemble the model is wearing is key. A photographer can build a story around a theme.

Putting up and storing a mood board online is another essential that helps give ideas on creating a setting, makeup, hair, posing examples, etcetera. Keeping a color palette is another major step for the makeup artist to work from during the portfolio shoot. Social media sites like Pinterest are wonderful at collaborating with others and adding to the photographer’s mood board.

Some photographers gather a wardrobe and collection of shoes in various sizes for the model shoot. Not having the right size in clothing and accessories can be a nightmare and limit creativity. A well-tuned creative team helps in a major way; having a great makeup artist and photo assistant can be a lifesaver.

These are just a handful of suggestions to help you nail your portfolio and land work in the modelling industry.