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View Full Version : Trouble with getting gigs!



MermaidCelesteFL
05-19-2014, 02:53 PM
So recently, I had some promo pics shot and have been showing up at springs to advertise my services with the entertainment company I work for, but despite all of that, my manager told me that he isn't going to be able to get me any gigs unless I provide a tank or a seashell setup for me to sit in.

It looks like I'm going to have to go off on my own until pool party season starts up. Does anyone have any tips or leads (within the Orlando-Clearwater area) on where I can get some gigs? I'm even willing to do free work if needed to get my name out there.

... something tells me I might need to find a better company to work with who can get me gigs rather than this a-hole.

Meilyn
05-19-2014, 06:16 PM
Be a freelancer and your own manager for these types of things. A lot of people won't understand you unless you show them what being a mermaid at a party or an event actually is.

Contact local pools and ask if they allow you to swim with your tail there. Then if you have any family members with young kids, offer to do a party there as a mermaid or even at your local beach/large body of water. See if a friend could take pictures for you, then post it up on your website/Facebook page. Show them that a shell prop/tank is NOT required.

My current acting/modeling agency hinders me on this aspect as they don't want me working without them. (Since they take 20%) So I'll have to let them go quite possibly. Also they manage so many people, it'd be hard to focus on just one if you're with an agency, unless they favor you in which, that, would mean you're losing a lot to them. If possible, I'd say look for a personal agent or be your own :)

I hope this helps <3

Meilyn
05-19-2014, 06:33 PM
It takes a lot of research and effort but if you're willing to put fourth the time, research, effort, and work for yourself as your own agent, you may do better than if you were with an agency who doesn't understand new things :)

I'm on that road currently.

Rivertee
05-19-2014, 10:47 PM
Volunteer for local end of the year Senior Luaus, and check in with kids clubs. It's how I get a lot of support for events at work ^.^

Ayla of Duluth
05-20-2014, 12:30 AM
Be a freelancer and your own manager for these types of things. A lot of people won't understand you unless you show them what being a mermaid at a party or an event actually is.

Contact local pools and ask if they allow you to swim with your tail there. Then if you have any family members with young kids, offer to do a party there as a mermaid or even at your local beach/large body of water. See if a friend could take pictures for you, then post it up on your website/Facebook page. Show them that a shell prop/tank is NOT required.

My current acting/modeling agency hinders me on this aspect as they don't want me working without them. (Since they take 20%) So I'll have to let them go quite possibly. Also they manage so many people, it'd be hard to focus on just one if you're with an agency, unless they favor you in which, that, would mean you're losing a lot to them. If possible, I'd say look for a personal agent or be your own :)

I hope this helps <3

I agree 100% with this. When I first landed on the news I had a guy call me up and ask if I needed a manager. I told him I wasn't really in a financial situation yet where I could afford a manager, and since I was just starting out, I didn't have enough publicity or gigs to need one. He kept saying he would help me become big, that I could move to the cities and do lots of adult photo shoots and gigs. He said if I hired him, we could skip over the little kid parties and just go straight to large events. While this is probably a more extreme case, I definitely recommend just managing yourself. you'll save money (if you pay the manager) and you'll be free to do whatever kinds of gigs you want. I've never had to get a tank or a seashell top for any gig I did.

Meilyn
05-20-2014, 07:06 AM
Ayla, that doesn't sound right and in glad you declined.

Also if you're looking for managers/personal agents, be very careful.

Early last year and the year before, modeling, I lost a LOT of money to an "entertainment" company that supplied models for shoots and events. No one ever got paid except my manager. And my manager used all 7-10 of us to work off his personal debts by sending us to "promotional" events, music video shoots for local artists, and modeling crap that HE had gotten paid for. No one ever saw a dime while they were taking what we worked for. Then a few of us were tricked into other promotions and helped expand a shirt company from the east coast on which, again, our time was a wasted. Then he proceeded to show us off as "his models". We got event and model pimped LOL. And he would guilt trip us naive girls into not having boyfriends or a modeling life outside of his help. The main girl got "fired" for getting into a relationship, much like I had gotten fired for getting into mine at my old coffee job earlier this year. It was just ridiculous. Bad times, bad days.

However, I do hope my experience and mistakes can teach others so I shall share my story...

Managers and Agents are only supposed to get paid if and when YOU get paid. Unless you're paying for material (photos, items, self promotional investments), don't ever pay anyone anything. Most agencies will have you buy and pay for your own photos to start out, but unless it's for YOU and not entirely THEM, don't risk it. Some managers and Agents are greedy enough to NEVER let you get paid. Unless they have a good resume and background, as well as a clean criminal record, etc, etc, don't give them a chance as this is your life and your future. Also, make sure to check references! :) The chance of blowing up without a great deal of time and effort is extremely rare. Most things like this, time, effort, perseverance will equal up to the amount of success you'll receive.

Don't stop trying and don't give up!
20940

Mermaid Harmony
05-20-2014, 02:30 PM
I agree, also I made up cards with my picture on them and started handing them out wherever I went and just going swimming randomly in tail and that helped get me started. Ask a couple of friends that have kids to host a party for you and then it'll spiral out that way as well.

MermaidBonnie
05-22-2014, 10:02 AM
I feel for ya. I've been in your fins. There's no one size fits all policy to help get into the business. I can tell you when I went out and did free stuff, that hurt me, bc then people never wanted to hire me back, they wanted me to keep on doing things for free. So I stopped, and I mean totally stopped. Even when I'm practicing at my pool, I won't let people take pictures of me. I tell them they can hire me and take all the pictures they want then, or look me up online. It sounds mean, and it was hard to do at first bc I'm a sweet southern girl at heart, but this is a business. Honestly, the people started respecting me more, and they took notice that if they wanted to show their daughter/grandkids that they met a mermaid, then they would need to book me for my time. Then their kids could really meet a mermaid, rather than just have a picture (or they could buy my pictures online if they wanted one). Then, you need to invest in your mermaiding experience. I don't know where you want to go with this. Are you looking to do kids parties, or are you looking to do open ocean/aquarium gigs? Either way, it helps to have experience and vids/pix of you out in the open water. Clients love mermaids with that kind of experience! Your dreams can come true, and I want to encourage you to go for them! But I also have hit some very hard bumps along the way and have learned some tough lessons about this business. It costs a lot of money upfront to make it as a professional mermaid...the training, certifications, experiences, website, tails, accessories, etc. can easily add up, and there's no guarantee that you will get the gigs you need to make that money back. There are mermaids who have left the business bc they lost everything in pursuing that dream, and there are some that you wouldn't know by looking at their online world that are barely holding on. Keep a balance when moving forward, is what I'm saying, know that this is a big gamble. For me, it has really paid off, and that's the good news. I was once barely able to buy my first tail, was living literally in the ghetto in a tiny apartment, living on student loans and working two jobs while trying to become a pro mermaid. Now, we own our dream home, free and clear in a few months, and we just paid off both of our student loans. My husband and I get to travel the world (he is the Director of our mermaid company and thus comes with me to just about everything), and we have mermaiding to thank for it. Like I said, dreams can and do come true, and I hope my advice helps you out :)

Mermaid Galene
05-22-2014, 10:16 AM
Great advice, Bonnie! I agree. I was a professional puppeteer for 25 years with my own touring theatre. Over the years, I had many enquiries about performing for free for this good cause or that good cause. I always declined, because if it's a profession, you have to be viewed and valued as a professional. I did volunteer puppetry with a very specific group, promoting tolerance for children with disabilities, and in that way I gave of my time and art to the community. I never felt any guilt about declining other free gigs. When someone said "We can't pay you, but it'll be great exposure!", I always replied, "This is Minnesota. You can die of exposure."

MermaidBonnie
05-23-2014, 02:18 PM
Haha Mermaid Galene!!!! You can die of exposure...I love it! I did one free event for an animal non-profit--worst mistake! I won't go into it but the animals didn't get what they deserved and a few photographers have my pictures without permission to sell for their own profit. Now I have my own charity. We've adopted 10 animals from kill shelters, some of them are special needs and require daily medical care. So if anyone asks me to do something non-profit, I just talk about that and ask them if they'd like to donate :)

Mermaid Galene
05-23-2014, 07:30 PM
That's awesome, Bonnie!