The Rock Agency
Model & Talent Casting
6312 Monona Dr.
Madison, WI 53716

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News - May, 2010

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How much do you really know about the industry?

Are you being marketed to your fullest potential? Are you being marketed correctly? What photos are needed for your portfolio? What photos should be put on your composite card?
How do you alter make-up for video or print? What’s the difference between editorial and fashion? What do catalog clients look for? What do commercial clients look for? What’s the difference?
How do you save the client money on prepress? What is prepress? Would you work in Milan? Would you work in Los Angeles? Would you work in Kuala Lumpur? What’s Kuala Lumpur?

The Rock Agency holds monthly workshops that answer ALL of these questions and more.

We at the Rock Agency are proud to announce that we have discovered the COOLEST product ever invented. It is called sunscreen. It comes in all kinds of varieties and guess what! If you use it every day and every few hours it will allow you to maintain the same skin tone color that you were born with. Yes, the same skin tone color that is shown in your photos. You know the photos...the ones that we send out to clients who want to hire you.
Yes, those clients are interested in hiring the people in the photos. The clients assume that when they choose a person to hire, that person will look like the photo.

 I know it seems insignificant, but it is actually a very big deal. Why is it a big deal? Because:

2.) Tan skin looks muddy on camera...natural skin glows and is more even.
3.) Tan lines ruin shots, if the shot involves a piece of clothing that shows your tan line, you can not be hired.
5.) 99% of the bookings that are taking place right now and through the summer are for advertisements that will be seen in the winter, so if you are tan, you are not even in the running to get the booking. Tans completely 'date' the picture. clients are always striving for season-less shots.
6.) SKIN CANCER! Oh and premature aging!

Assessing Your Risk By Tony Hodges
Creative Director, IMTA

You are just starting out and not yet a star. You are hoping casting directors will hire you, producers will want to work with you, and agents and managers will want to represent you. You worked hard to prepare, picked out the clothes to wear, have just the right hair, and feel ready to take on the world. You get callbacks and follow-up interviews. Now you are waiting to see if they want to hire you. What’s going on? What are those casting directors doing that is taking so long? Well, if they are smart, they are doing their homework. People who interview looking for new faces have this really cool job that allows them to see hundreds of aspiring models, actors, singers and dancers from so many different cities and with incredibly varied looks, skills and abilities. And when you think about it, a large part of their job is about risk assessment—assessing the pros (and cons) of casting an actor in a film, or using a particular model in a campaign. They must constantly answer the question, "Who's going to end up causing me more headaches?" You might argue that’s a really cynical approach to their job, but look at it from their point of view. Producers hire casting directors not only to help them find the best-matched actor for each role but also to help them predict the level of risk involved in each casting decision. Just like actors, Casting Directors and Agents build a reputation by having done a great job on the last gig (and all the ones before that). The more often they are "right" in their risk assessment and recommendations, the more weight their opinion will carry. Managers and Agents sign models and talent that they will put up for fashion shows, print work, movies, pilots and commercials. Their reputation is on the line that the people they have just signed to a contract (but don’t know very well) will show up, be on time, be prepared and able to do the work, be an asset rather than a negative, be able to actually do that special skill listed on their resume, make people comment what a pleasure it was to work with them rather than roll their eyes and try to think of something neutral to say, be professional in a business where time really is money. The concept of having your “risk assessed” can be difficult for many models, actors, singers and dancers to grasp. After all, you’re drop dead gorgeous/handsome, have a runway walk/talent that knocks their socks off, have always been able to deliver, have references from your teacher/pastor/dentist saying what a good person you are, and are ready to show the world who you are and what you can do. So what’s the problem? Next question: How do you come off in public? Yes, you may still be below the tabloid radar and paparazzi might not (yet) shout your name when you dash for your car, but you probably have a MySpace or Facebook account, right? What do people see there? Are there compromising photos of you, semi-conscious after doing body shots? Photos showing you drinking when you are underage? Do all of your blog entries begin, "I was so wasted..."? Are you going to make the casting director/manager/agent worry that you won't make it to set on time if you had to "get your party on" the night before? And how do you talk about and describe friends, family, your job, experiences? Does your page exude personality, fun, positive vibes…or negativity, four-letter words, “I hate my life and everyone in it.” If you think producers, agents, managers and casting directors aren't on Facebook, think again. This is part of their “homework” that I mentioned. In networking with dozens of casting directors and producers, tons of actors, and many agents and managers with whom I’ve worked, the majority say they have visited Facebook or done an internet search to get to know the people with whom they will be working. And even if your profile is set to "private," there are Internet Archive services and cached pages that leave a trail of your online footprints. One producer I know told me about an actor she was considering casting but, after going home and doing a web search on him, she became certain she didn't want to work with him. Turns out he had blogged a pretty negative experience that he had during a production once before…and even if he is 100% in the right in everything he blogged, it was enough to scare off this producer. What if she were to be his next victim? She wasn't going to risk her reputation on this actor's "right to blog" about personality conflicts. In another instance, I did an internet search for a young actor who attended IMTA, won talent awards, received numerous callbacks, and signed with a well-known LA agency. I had the idea of writing a press release about his work on a short film, a film in which he had been cast by a Casting Director who had seen him at IMTA. Imagine my reaction when his MySpace page contained remarks belittling his IMTA experience, pictures of him drinking (he is 16), expletive-filled postings, and comments about how he had done some small acting jobs but he was so bored with the whole experience. Readers were also admonished to “get a life” if they were reading his profile. Hmmm…what was that question? "Who's going to end up causing me more headaches?" Don’t get me wrong. Sites such as are cool, fun places to chat with friends, post pictures, blog about life, family, school, job, anything and everything. You can express yourself, show your spirit, your approach to living, be open about who you are. Millions of people go to MySpace for the movies, music, books, games and IM. It’s truly a place for friends…and also where people can do their homework on models and talent they may want to hire or sign for representation. Keep in mind that it is no longer simply enough to be talented and/or good-looking. Producers, agents, managers, casting directors—all are looking for talent or models that have the potential to become a “total package” and who can be successful in the business. And it is a business—a business in which you are asking that producer, manager, agent or casting director to invest in you, to promote the package that is you, to help you get jobs, to take a risk to their reputation that as a model, actor, singer or dancer you have what it takes, that you will work hard, that you will be responsible, respectful, diligent. It is a risk they take because the rewards for them and you can be great when you become a working professional. But it is nevertheless a risk. And you must assume that part of the risk assessment that's going on these days (in any potential employment situation) includes a good Googling. So, what’s on your MySpace/Facebook?

Wish them Luck!!
 These 7 Rock Stars are headed to NY this month to showcase there talent to hundreds agents, managers and casting directors!!!


 See more upcoming events at The Rock Agency.

The Rock Agency is a model and talent casting company.
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Previous Newsletters:
April 27, 2010
April 6, 2010
February, 2010
January 11, 2010January, 2010
November 17, 2009
November 4, 2009
October 7, 2009
September 29, 2009
September 1, 2009
August 20, 2009
August 5, 2009





 The Rock Agency Model and Talent Casting 6312 Monona Dr. Madison, WI 53716