....it probably is.
I received an offer for a paid gig the other day. They offered $3000 to do 2 hours of non-nudes for a commercial gig. Sounded interesting.... if it weren't for a few HUGE red flags...
1. If I were an actual model, I mean, a model registered with a modeling agency, and some amount of face/name recognition, maybe this would make sense. But I'm not that kind of model. I'm an average looking, middle aged fine art nude model, with no name or face recognition in the professional field. Why on earth would anybody in the right frame of mind offer THAT much money for my time???
2. HUGE red flag: the photographer contacted me through OMP. His portfolio had 1 view, and was deleted at the time I went over to review it.
3. Another big, flaming warning: the photographer/agent spelled his last name two different ways in his portfolio, which made me believe it was not his real name, and to top it off, he had a yahoo email, and I don't know to many pros who represent a serious company with a yahoo email
4. The email was littered with serious spelling errors. It did not come across as very professional
5. The photographer urged me to continue communication via private email, not through OMP
So I thought I'd prod a little more, and I requested some more information from the photographer.....
I received another email from this person, again filled with many spelling errors, as well as some name dropping of working with a professional modeling agency, as well as the name of the client.... a company that supposedly was looking for a face to represent a new line of dog food (??).
I googled the client, and they only offer " chinese people food". I also contacted the modeling agency as a reference check, but never received a reply from them. Regardles.., if an agent is working with a modeling agency, why would he contact a model out of the blue, rather than trying to find a model that is signed up with the agency.
I ended up contacting OMP, and they confirmed the portfolio was deleted because the person sending these notes was a scammer.
I can't help but wonder what would have happened if I were actually stupid enough to believe the offer. ..
I could tell a few stories about offers I have received through various modeling sites (and THANK GOD never followed up on). There are way too many creeps out there.
so the moral of the story:
- For models: CHECK REFERENCES. Your safety may be at stake. People have a bad habit of misrepresenting themselves online. Your personal safety may be at stake. I've heard far too many horror stories about shoots gone VERY, very wrong when the model decides to work with a "photographer" with alterior motives
- For photographers: when a model presents her rate for nude modeling,.. it can be anywhere from $50 to $100/ hr depending on experience level.. please understand that this rate is PEANUTS compared to the risk the model subjects herself to each time she accepts an assigment. She is nude and vulnerable during the shoot. It's a tremendous thing, when you really think about it.
Anyhow,.. just a small rant. I would appreciate hearing throughts from the pro photographers, as well as other models who have experienced these types of scams.