INTERVIEW: PATRICK SIMON OF ELITE PARIS
CAN YOU DESCRIBE THE WORK OF A MODELS AGENT?
Basically it’s about careers developing, careers managing and also scouting.The girls arrive here at the agency being “new face”, they have a coaching period till they are ready to go on the main board.
FOR HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN DOING THIS JOB?
I started in the mid-90’s, I was already passionate about fashion and photography. I had a friend who was already working as agent and he asked me if I wanted to try. I have been to other agencies before, like Ford or Next. And this is going to be my 10th year at Elite.
IS THE AGENT VERY IMPORTANT IN A MODEL’S CAREER?
We usually say it’s a team-work. For 50% a career depends by the model herself, but the team-work with the agent does the other 50%.
We care about relations, we are coach, friend, support in case girls need it. We work with human beings. Some way models are like raw diamonds and agent are the ones who have to refine them.
DID YOU SEE MANY CHANGES IN THE INDUSTRY?
Many. About aesthetic nowadays girls are younger, taller, less curved…and of course there are much more girls from eastern Europe compared to when I started.
About the business, as we work in luxury, we can say that even it’s not the golden age anymore, everything is going well.
HAVE INSTAGRAM CHANGED THE RATING OF THE MODELS?
Surely Instagram had a big impact in the business, but not so crucial as people may imagine. It gives a more complete vision of a model, with her world, her passions, it gives an important support to the client but I think it doesn’t make the final decision by itself.
It’s more a way for some models to communicate directly with people and clients.
IS EVERY BOOKER WORKING WITH A CERTAIN TARGET OF MODELS OF GROUP OF THEM?
No here at Elite, even if all the girls have their personal agent for reference, every agent can book every model.
PHOTOS & INTERVIEW BY PIER GRASSANO