I’d like to talk to you about critiques and how to deal with criticism as a model. One thing I wish I had been told about as a new model was how to handle criticism and that all critiques are not necessarily helpful.
We’ll start by talking about critiques. A critique is generally meant to evaluate someone’s work and a good critique should be constructive (helpful). One important thing to keep in mind is that critiques are subjective meaning that the person giving the critique is basing the critique on their opinion. I’ve found that certain people will offer a negative critique if they don’t like the style of a photo or the photographer personally. And even worse some people will give a negative critique as a way to make a model feel bad so the model will hire them or work with them. That’s not to say all negative critiques are lies, but I feel that you should remember that a critique is just one person’s opinion. I’ve found that the most helpful critiques come from those who know my work and know my goals because they can actually offer me constructive critique with the help of knowledge of my work as a model.
One type of “critique” that can be very troublesome for new models is the unsolicited critique which is a critique that is offered without being asked for. It can be really difficult to ignore these and not let them get to you unless you’re already very thick-skinned. My advice for you would be do your best to ignore these if you can, but at least do not respond upset. Many of these people send these unsolicited critiques with the purpose of upsetting you or making you feel bad for whatever reason. Sometimes it’s because they want to make you feel bad so you’ll work with them. For example, some of them will even go so far as to give a very negative critique and then say something like “… but if you shoot with me I can definitely get you better photos than what you have.”Other times they may just feel bad that another photographer they don’t like has gotten to shoot with you. Or maybe they just want to bring others down because they are bored or sadistic. Whatever it is, just try to ignore it and move on.
Now with all of that said, let’s move on how you can deal with other sorts of criticism. As is probably clear from what I’ve said so far, people will criticize you. Part of being a model is learning to deal with this. And sometimes there may be something to learn from things people say to you. If one person says something, it may not mean much (or it could), but if you are hearing the same thing over and over, it may be time to examine the situation and see if there might be some truth to what they are saying.
You will find that the more you are seen by other models and photographers, the more comments you’ll get and, unfortunately, the more likely you may come across some negativity. You will want to learn how to handle this gracefully and without causing argument. Sometimes, you may just want to ignore the comments. If you’re not sure how to respond calmly, then refraining from responding is probably the best idea.
Basically, you’ll need to learn to take negative criticism and either let it go or learn from it, but don’t let yourself become manipulated by it.
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