The 7 Best Modeling Agencies in Iowa
When you think about modeling, Iowa is probably not one of the states that will come to your mind.
However, the “fly-over” state has produced some of the world’s best-known models like Ugbad Abdi, Ashton Kutcher, Alanna Arington, Brandon Routh, and many more.
If you are an aspiring or working model looking for representation, here are the 7 best modeling agencies in Iowa, you should join in 2022.
This article covers topics like a brief history of the modeling agencies, divisions, submission policies, and notable talent.
1. The Peak Agency
About the Agency
The Peak Agency is a full-service talent agency that is one of the most respected and reputable modeling agencies in Iowa and the Midwest.
President and current owner, Steve Myers co-founded Peak Agency in 2002 and acquired Avant Studios in 2004.
Steve and Mary Corell (former owner of Avant) bring over 50 years of experience in scouting and placing models and talent in the Midwest and all over the US.
The Peak Agency is known for its highly skilled and experienced talent and easy booking progress. It is also the only agency in Iowa accredited by the BBB (Better Business Bureau).
The agency specializes in booking local work for their talent. However, it also helps create opportunities for their talent to break into the modeling and entertainment industry and gauge their potential.
It also helps talent transition to major markets through professional relationships it has established as well as conventions like the IMTA (International Modeling and Talent Association).
The Peak Agency also provides its talent with workshops and classes like its Commercial Auditioning Class that helps them get experience in front of the camera and understand the auditioning process.
The agency’s models and talent have worked with clients like Pepsi, General Motors, Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, Hanes, Centrum Vitamins, Goodyear, Hoover Vacuums, Wood Magazine, and many more.
- Commercials (Principal talent, Non-speaking Principal talent, Voice talent, Extras)
- Promotional Event Staffing/Brand Ambassadors
- Training Videos/Infomercials
- Runway Models
Models and talent can submit their materials by filling out the online submission form. The agency doesn’t accept walk-in submissions.
The minimum age for representation is 4 years old.
After it has received an application, the agency usually takes about two weeks to review the submitted materials and contact potential candidates for an interview (usually through email).
During the interview session, applicants get to learn about things like:
- How the agency works
- What to expect
- How they get paid
- How long it takes to get established
When submitting photos, please make sure that your photos are recent and represent your current look.
Photos should include a full-length body shot, a close-up headshot, and shots with natural smiles. Females over the age of 13 should submit photos without any makeup.
Applicants can also submit their photos (minimum of 3) and materials by mail. Make sure to include your measurements and contact information in your submission.
Applicants can send their mail submissions to:
The Peak Agency
6150 Village View Dr. Suite 112
West Des Moines, IA 50266
2. Maxx Models & Talent
About the Agency
Founded in 2002 by owner Holly Bell, Maxx Models & Talent is another well-known modeling agency in Iowa.
The agency helps create new opportunities and exposure for local talent and supports them in achieving their career goals.
Maxx Models and Talent specializes in scouting and developing models for Print work, Runway, TV Commercials, and Special Events.
The agency also offers workshops/classes for their talent that cover topics like professional photo shoot tips and basic modeling techniques.
Maxx Models has worked with clients like the FCU (Federal Credit Union), Carpets Plus, Ruhl & Ruhl Realtors, St. Ambrose University, and many more.
Holly Bell – Owner (Certified Miss America Judge, Pageant Consultant, Miss Iowa Sponsor)
Hope Plans – Instructor, Assistant, & Model (Former Miss U.S,)
Jake Van Dam of JMV Portraits ( Certified Professional Photographer with PPA)
Taylor Cederoth – Instructor & Professional Model
Daniel Sheridan – Guest Instructor (Professional Actor & Performing Arts Supervisor at Davenport Parks & Recreation)
Ben Gougeon – Instructor (Professional Actor)
3. Midwest Model Agency
About the Agency
Midwest Model Agency is an Iowa modeling agency that prides itself in doing things it’s way. The agency is located in the landmark Livery Building in Boone, Iowa which is an excellent place for model shoots.
Strategic choices like this help the agency operate without charging its talent any kind of fees.
The agency is one of the few modeling agencies that provides its talent with an in-studio portfolio photoshoot at no cost.
Midwest also promotes its models at its own expense.
The agency is quite conservative in its viewpoint and policies and is very transparent in its stance on safety, privacy, modeling agency fees, and gun ownership.
The staff and some of the models at Midwest Model Agency are registered gun owners who carry their guns to photo shoots and other events.
The agency is also proud to not be a member of SAG-AFTRA and has no intentions of joining in the future.
The agency’s anti-SAG stance is based on its choice to stay independent and not be controlled or influenced by the association.
The agency is a strong advocate for the right kind of modeling, and educates its talent on industry standards like 20% (maximum) agency fees and signing contracts for 3 years or less, unless it’s a top 10 agency.
Midwest Model Agency encourages its models to do multiple portfolio shoots and videos if they are serious about succeeding in the industry.
The agency represents its models in the Apparel, Fitness, Bridal, Runway, Print, Event, and Commercial sectors.
Some of the clients Midwest Model Agency has worked with include Blonde Babes Boutique, The Funky Zebras Boutique Of Ankeny, Azalea Lane Boutique,
Nymph In The Woods Jewelry, Spoons Full Of Sugar, Raviani Handbags, and Ames Fitness Center among others.
Models can submit their materials and information through the online application form. The agency may take a few days to contact applicants after receiving their submissions.
The agency is very selective and usually accepts about 20% or less of applicants.
4. Creation Mother Management
About the Agency
Creation Mother Management is a premier modeling and talent management agency in Iowa that is owned and directed by Roxanne Smith.
The agency represents both male and female models in Runway, Editorial, Fashion, Print, and Commercial areas among others.
Creation Mother Management is known for discovering new talent and developing them into professional models.
One of the top models that the agency has represented is Iowa native Taj Feistner.
Models can submit their materials online here.
Modeling Agencies In The Midwest
The following agencies are not located in Iowa but have been added to this list because they are the closest to Iowa.
These agencies are located in the neighboring states of Nebraska and Illinois.
5. SK Model Management
About the Agency
Located in Rock Island, Illinois, SK Model Management is one of the best modeling agencies in the Midwest.
SK is a premier model and talent agency that has been providing talent for fashion, print, video, and commercial projects for over 30 years.
The agency has five separate divisions and represents a diverse roster of talent from all over the U.S.
SK works with clients on both regional and national levels and has become known as an agency that has top talent, competitive booking rates, and a team of seasoned industry professionals.
The agency represents children, men, and women in its modeling division. Models usually work with clients from all aspects of the fashion industry in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York.
SK’s acting division represents experienced actors in commercial, print, voice-over, and film areas.
The agency also represents hair and makeup artists.
Understanding the needs of its models and talent who want to work outside of the midwest region in larger markets like Chicago, New York, Miami, and Los Angeles, the agency has developed a division called SK2.
The SK2 division is responsible for helping talent develop their portfolio and facilitating their placement with potential top agencies that have a need for their look.
Through SK2 the agency acts as a “mother agency” and works with talent and agents to secure the best outcome for their talent’s career and future in the industry.
Some of the models SK has worked with include Deqo Jama, Michael Liendo, Sydney Schnee, Rachele Breiby, Colin Ryan, and others.
Interested models can contact the agency at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a personal interview on Zoom.
When submitting photos refer to the sample photos provided on the agency’s website.
Applicants should showcase their natural hair and makeup in their photos and wear simple body-fitting clothes with solid colors.
6. Develop Model Management
About the Agency
Located in Omaha, Nebraska, Develop Model Management is another premier modeling and placement agency in the Midwest.
The agency frequently works with some of the top agencies in New York, Milan, Paris, London, and the rest of the world as well as top-tier clients like Kohls, Alexander McQueen, Wrangler, WWD, Armani, and many more.
The agency first opened for business in 2012 and launched its Talent Division that catered to acting talent in 2015.
The division represents talents of all ages in film, commercial acting, voice-over, and print modeling.
Develop Model Management supports the local model and fashion industry by sponsoring events like the Omaha Fashion Week and creating the curriculum and programming for the Omaha Fashion Camp.
The Omaha Fashion Camp teaches kids and teens about the fashion industry and covers topics like modeling, fashion design, photography, sewing, and much more.
The agency is run by owner and director Alyssa Dilts who was the former Director of the Runway and New Faces & Development Division at Elite Model Management in Chicago.
Develop has garnered a reputation in the Midwest as an agency that has the most prepared, knowledgeable, and professional models.
Women (Image, Main Board, Curve/Fitness, Development)
Men (Image, Main Board, Fitness)
Kids (Girls, Boys)
Female models should be 12 years old and above and be 5’5” or taller. Male models should be 15 years old and above and be 5’11” or taller.
Models who are serious about pursuing a career in modeling can apply through the online submission form.
- Photo 1: shoulders up, no smile
- Photo 2: waist up, smile
- Photo 3: full-length body
- No selfies, no filters, and little to no makeup
- Non-professional photos are preferred
7. Reel People Models & Talent
About the agency
Located in Omaha, Nebraska, Reel People Models & Talent (RPMT) is one of the most active modeling and talent agencies in the Midwest.
The agency works with local talent and helps them get career opportunities and exposure at both local and national levels.
RPMT was founded in 1999 by owner and photographer Donnie Branson. The agency represents men, women, and children.
RPMT has an experienced on-staff photographer that helps its models with their composite cards, portfolio, headshots, and other promotional needs.
The agency also offers orientation meetings and workshops for its models so they can build their confidence and knowledge.
Models can submit their materials online using the online application form. The agency will contact potential applicants that it’s interested in for an in-house audition.
- Photos should be good quality (clear photo that shows your face)
- No selfies!
- Headshot or Body shot
- Photos can be taken on a cellphone
- If you already have professional photos, you can use those
- Wear a plain outfit (jeans and a cami or t-shirt)
- Girls should be in heels
- Wear little to no makeup