Models often go through a rigorous selection process commonly referred to as castings where a client or designer get to see and interview them.
“After some simple routine questions, if the client wants to book the model for a show, the model may be asked to do a catwalk or perform a few quick poses for the client,” says Joram Job Muzira, a model scout and casting director.
According to Muzira, the most important attribute any runway model can have is the walk, therefore models must perfect it before anything else.
Another important possession a model must have is a portfolio or composite (comp) cards which carry their body type details such as height and other body measurements.
This makes it easier for designers to quickly select models who will wear their outfits and participate in their show.
Bangi Bagwana, the designer behind the Eguana Kampala label, says there a number things he considers when selecting models to wear and walk in his outfits.
“In the past, I would work with small size models. That has however changed today as I try to include models of all different sizes,” Bagwana says, adding, “Also, I always tend to choose models I have worked with before because they already know what I expect of them.”
On the other hand, Philip Buyi, the designer behind Kkoolo fashion brand says he hardly considers aspects such as height and size, but rather, personality. The most sought after personality trait among models is self-discipline.
A model needs the discipline to rise very early, work till late, keep appointment for shows or shootings, travel non-stop and stand for hours on end under all weather conditions. And then versatility, which means being able to interpret different roles according to the photographer’s needs.
“I do not conform to the fashion rules that models should be of a particular body size or height. If I see a model whose body size suites any of my designs, I will pick her to walk for me. Even if she is not that tall or small. I appreciate all body sizes,” Buyi says.