Venture Photography are a company I have a lot of admiration for.
Having been ripped off previously by other well-known photography companies, I took my child along with my bruised ego to Venture a few months back to get some updated snaps - fearful of the same thing happening again.
Instead we had a delightful and enjoyable photo shoot, left with some gorgeous photos and paid less than a QUARTER of the amount I had paid previously.
So when I heard about Venture's new campaign to find the Little Face Of Venture I was excited...the winner will receive some amazing prizes including a years supply of Start-Rite shoes, a gift from LEGO and a year long modelling contract with top agency MOT models.
Entering is not only very straightforward - all you need to do is buy a full family photography voucher and go along for your shoot, where your photographer will select the best image of your child to be entered into the competition - but it also does a little something to help a good cause too!
For every child who enters, a £1 donation will be made to Wellchild - the National Charity for Sick Children. What a great cause to support and a fun way to do it, too!
This leads me on to a subject I have wanted to talk about for a while....child modelling.
Many people have very strong opinions on it, and I find the debate an interesting one.
I have been approached by child modelling agencies twice in relation to Tyne.
The first agency who contacted us offered us "representation" - but something about their approach made me hesitant, and a quick google search of their name turned up some very poor reviews exposing them as scammers who charge a fortune for representation and never deliver on any promises - so of course, I politely declined their offer and thought no more of it.
A few months later, we were approached for a second time.
When I did some research on this agency, I found none of the previous horror stories - infact I found all glowing reviews, and success stories from satisfied customers.
So Jon & I talked it over and weighed up the pro's & con's.
We considered the fact that there would be some travelling involved if Tyne was to get a job - but as we both work flexible hours, this wasn't really an issue for us.
We considered that it may not be something he enjoys doing as he gets older, and we agreed that if he ever seemed to not enjoy it then we would simply stop.
We considered that many people consider it to be immoral to allow your child to "work" in this way for money.
We then thought of the plus points....
Any money Tyne was to make from this wouldn't be touched by us, but would be put aside for him when he's older - it may not amount to much but we are certainly not rich people and I do worry about him not having a big inheritance to come into when he comes of age, so any amount put aside for him would be a help and something that he would surely appreciate.
It would allow him to have experiences and opportunities that not everybody has, and it may be something he enjoys as he gets older - I know as a child I always so wanted to be one of the little models in the catalogues, and I was always begging to go to stage school and perform - so if he is anything like I was, he may well thrive on being in the spotlight and thoroughly enjoy the experience....giving him some great memories to look back on when he's older.
When I see the cute babies featured in baby food adverts, I never think to myself "Oh those poor mites are being exploited...."
I think "How sweet do they look. And what a wonderful little anecdote to have when you're older..."I was the chuckling baby in the Cow & Gate advert!"
So we decided to just go with it, and see what happens.
We signed the contract and Tyne is now on the agencies books.
We're not putting any more thought into it than that at the moment - the chances are he may never even get a single job, so why overthink it all now?!
If any opportunities do come his way, we'll weigh them up on a case by case basis and see what we think.
I'm confident we won't be doing anything to exploit him!
What are your thoughts on child and baby modelling? What would you do if approached? As always, I'd love to hear from you!
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