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Can Modeling Lead to Acting Work?

Learn if modeling will help you launch an acting career from model scout Trudi Tapscott in this Howcast video.


I want to explain to you the difference between modeling and acting. But in some ways, I really think they're the same thing. I think that models are acting characters and acting throughout. I think they on to a casting. It's not necessarily how it would normally be in their living room. I think that there is an element of acting with modeling all the time in pictures, creating different characters, getting into different moods. It's a very mental experience in a lot of ways for most models.

Acting as itself, in terms of just acting, is completely different. But even though there are some similarities, the time that it takes to learn each of those skills is different. So, if you want to be a model who is going to work every day in fashion and work for all different kinds of clients, and do the fashion shows, you don't necessarily have the time to go to acting class. You don't really have control of your schedule in a lot of ways. You could be enrolled in acting classes or working with an acting coach because you would like to work in film. But, to be committed to that, you need to be committed to that.

In modeling you need to be committed to modeling. So, if someone calls you and says, "You need to get on a plane tonight. You're going to Paris," you can't say, "Well, I can't because I'm in acting class." And the same goes for your acting class. You can't say, "I can't do that workshop with my group because I have a modeling job." So, something is always going to suffer. I think it's very difficult to do both at the same time, but I do think there comes a point in modeling where you have time to sort of transition into acting. During the transition of that, you learn that they're actually two completely different things.

The vulnerability that is required to be a great actor, the skill set is different. The ability to not be focused on yourself because you're working with another person, you're reading lines, you're creating a moment. There are lots of different things that go on in acting that don't happen in modeling, even though they seem sort of related in a way. It's a big commitment. It's a completely different commitment.

Models do TV commercials for certain brands, but they're kind of modeling on TV. It's the same thing that they do for print, for a magazine or catalog. They're modeling for a picture, and usually fashion television just takes the same thing, and it's just animated. So, you're not really expanding your repertoire very much by doing fashion television commercials and even cosmetics. If you're doing makeup, you rarely talk. So, actually getting out of your own head and pursuing acting is really a different skill set, and it takes, in my opinion, to be great at it a 100 percent commitment.

History has shown that very few models have gone onto to have creditable acting careers. So, there are some great examples of some people who have done it, or they modeled a minute and then they went into acting. But they're usually not that they're doing those two things at the same time, other than actresses who are in cosmetic campaigns. I think there are more actresses being models than there are models being actresses.

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