Modeling is distinguished from other types of public performance, such as an acting, dancing or mime artistry, although the boundary is not well defined. Appearing in a movie or a play is generally not considered to be modeling, regardless of the nature of the role. However, models generally have to express emotion in their photographs, and many models have also described themselves as actors.
Types of models include glamour, fashion, fitness, bikini, fine-art, and body-part models.
Not all models are beautiful: character models portray ordinary people and humorous types, mostly in print work and in commercials.
Fashion models are used mainly to promote apparel. Fashion Modeling generally can be divided into two categories (editorial and runway), and into the following sub-categories:
The ideal measurements used to be 90-60-90 cm (35.5-23.5-35.5 in) which allegedly referred to the measurements of Marilyn Monroe. However, today's fashion models tend to have the measurements of the AMA which could be down to the coherence of the numbers 34-24-34 in.
The unusually thin shape of fashion models has been criticized for allegedly warping girls' body image and encouraging eating disorders. Organizers of a fashion show in Madrid in September 2006 turned away models who were judged to be underweight by medical personnel who were on hand. In February 2007, six months after her sister, Luisel Ramos - also a model - died, Uruguayan model Eliana Ramos became the third international model to die of malnutrition in six months. The second victim was Ana Carolina Reston. Luisel Ramos died of heart failure caused by anorexia nervosa just after stepping off the catwalk.
Glamour photography emphasizes the model rather than products, fashion or environment. Typically the sexuality of the model is emphasized in glamour photography, while in fashion photography the emphasis is on the clothes.
Early glamour modeling is often associated with "French postcards", small postcard sized images that were sold by street vendors in France. In the early 1900s the pinup became popular. Pinups depicted scantily dressed women often in a playful pose seemingly surprised or startled by the viewer. The model would usually have an expression of delight which seemed to invite the viewer to come and play. Betty Grable was one of the most famous pinup models of all time; her pinup in a bathing suit was extremely popular amongst World War II soldiers. In December of 1953 Marilyn Monroe was featured in the first issue of Playboy magazine. Playboy became the first magazine featuring nude glamour photography targeted to the mainstream consumer. Glamour models popular in the early 90s included Hope Talmons and Dita Von Teese and the modern era is represented by models like Heidi Van Horne and Bernie Dexter.
Supermodels are highly paid, top fashion models. These (usually female) celebrities, also known as cover girls, appear on top fashion magazine covers, in catalogues and in fashion shows. The first model to pave the way for what would become the supermodel was Lisa Fonssagrives. The relationship between her image on over 200 Vogue covers and her name recognition led to the importance of Vogue in shaping future supermodels. Her image appeared on the cover of every fashion magazine during the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s from Town & Country, Life and Vogue to the original Vanity Fair. Model Janice Dickinson has asserted that she was the person for whom the term was coined, as she popped the term herself while talking to her agent at the climax of her career by saying, "I'm not superman, I'm a supermodel".
For women models, usually the models can be shorter- more around 5 ft 5 in-5 ft 8 in (1.65 m-1.73 m) and need to be in the range of .
Photographers, painters, sculptors, and other artists hire models to pose for their art.
An alternative model is any model that does not fit into the normal category. Punk, Goth, Fetish, Tattooed, or having a uniqueness outside other model types. These mix with high fashion and art models. Thanks to publishers such as Goliath in Germany, alternative models and punk photography became known by a larger audience.