Modeling FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Modeling

Please take a moment to browse the portfolios in the Gallery to get an idea of the types of photography we do.

Q. What does it take to be a model?

A. We are looking for athletic to muscular men 18 years of age and older. Physical fitness is more important than age, with a preference for those who look 18 to 35 years old. Model applicants should be outgoing, uninhibited, and comfortable in their own skin. Attractive face, nice smile, great hair, muscular build, low body fat, 6-pack abs, clear skin, and large endowment are all pluses. The ideal model has most of these qualities and would not be out-of-place appearing in a fitness magazine – with an overall ‘commercial’ look. Check out our Model Tips on building muscle and getting a flat stomach.

Q. What are the pictures used for?

A. Commercial shoots are scheduled with the intent of creating beautiful art that will be used for greeting cards, calendars, coffee table books, art prints, magazine spreads, Website features and more. Prairie Visions Photography retains copyright and exclusive commercial use of this material. Want to see examples of how our photos are used? Check out our photo art products on the Shop tab.

Q. What kind of experience is required?

A. We enjoy working with new models and experienced models. We love “fresh” faces, and everyone needs to start somewhere, right? Models who have more professional experience and ‘Fame’ than others (have appeared in magazines, books, videos, or other  commercially-produced material and are well-recognized) will usually earn more than someone with little or no experience (see “So, what does it pay?” below).

Q. Is nudity required?

A. No. Every model has certain boundaries we are happy to respect. Many projects require nudity, so we will select models who are comfortable with that kind of work for those. Nude shoots do tend to pay a premium over non-nude shoots (see “So, what does it pay?” below). Regardless, our photographic style is fun ‘n sexy, so keep that in mind when applying.

Q. So, what does it pay?

A. Depends. Here’s a rough formula we use when calculating an hourly rate to offer a model:

  • Physical Build + Facial Qualities + Youthful Appearance (look 19-35) + Professional Experience + Fame +  Nudity (Artistic) + Nudity (Erotic) = up to $100 per hour for photo shoots
  • Models may also receive copies of pictures from the shoot for their own personal or non-commercial use, such as for posting on social networks or model portfolio development. If you are new to modeling, portfolio development is important to your future modeling career. Take every opportunity you can to work with skilled photographers to create a diverse portfolio showcasing you in a variety of looks and genres. See “I would love to explore modeling…” below.
  • Travel reimbursement, if applicable

If you have never done any professional modeling before, please set your compensation expectations accordingly.

Q. I would love to explore modeling and would appreciate assistance with developing a model portfolio. Can you help with that?

A. Yes, of course. A photo shoot with an experienced photographer, stylist and image retoucher could easily cost a model several hundred dollars. We will help select models with portfolio development at no cost to the model – trading their time at the shoot for images for his portfolio. Prairie Visions Photography retains copyright and exclusive commercial use of all material. We are also available for custom shoots. If you’d like to hire us, use the Contact Us form above.

Q. How long does a shoot last?

A. That depends on the model and the goals of the shoot. A shoot could last anywhere from one hour to several hours or more.

Q. Do you use a model more than once?

A. Definitely! Models who seem popular with our audience will be invited back for additional shoots.

Q. Where do the shoots take place?

A. Our studios is located in Council Bluffs and Des Moines, Iowa. Many of our photo shoots take place here. Additionally, we scout interesting locations and shoot outside (weather permitting). We also travel and like to arrange model shoots wherever we go. Perhaps we will be visiting your city soon! We also refer willing models to our partner studio that produces adult videos in Northern California.

Q. Do I have to sign anything?

A. In order to be considered, you must complete our online Model Application and provide recent sample pictures. If selected, you must complete a Model Release and provide a government-issued photo identification as proof of age (must be 19 or over). Models projected to be paid $600 or more in a calendar year must also complete a Form W-9 (Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification) and will receive a Form 1099-MISC (Miscellaneous Income) listing total model fees paid that year for tax purposes.

Q. What if I don’t have professional pictures to submit with my Model Application?

A. Pictures submitted for an initial evaluation don’t need to be professional. Amateur snapshots, even those from a mobile device, will often work as a starting place to be considered. Regardless, do what you can to make sure your sample pictures are well-lit and not fuzzy, and less than 1 MB each in size. If we can’t see what you look like we can’t consider you as a model. Maybe a friend with a camera can help. Required pictures include a closeup of your face and ones that clearly show your physical build (wearing only shorts or underwear, for example). Poses that would be helpful include: close-up of face, full-body front, full-body rear, profile (side), close-up of torso (chest & abs) wearing as little as possible. Sample images do not need to contain nudity unless you would like to be considered for nude work. If your sample pictures are promising but we are not certain how you will photograph with our equipment and studio, we may ask you to come in for a test shoot.

Q. Can I just email you some pictures and skip the Model Application?

A. It is very difficult to keep track of emails from models who want to work with us. Our Model Application tracking system helps us quickly find a model to fit a current need. If you find it difficult to complete the Model Application with a mobile device, perhaps you can use a library or friend’s computer.

Q. I completed the Model Application awhile ago, but since then I have been working out and am in much better shape. Can I just email some updated pictures?

A. It is best to complete a new Model Application and attach your updated pictures. That way not only will we have your most recent pictures, but we also will have current information about your modeling interests, expectations and goals.

So, if you feel you have what it takes and wish to be considered, complete the Model Application.

Been awhile since you’ve heard from us? Drop us a note at