Modelling has a bewildering array of's a few common ones explained.

TFCD - Time for CD ie. you give your time in return for a CD of images from the shoot, normally about 20 or so edited images. Be selective in your TFCD arrangements as there is no point in doing it unless the images are of some benefit to you. Also bare in mind good photographers are also very selective in their TFCD arrangements, so treat the opportunity to work on this basis with a good photographer as a lucky break rather than a devine right.

TFP - Time for prints. As above but you also receive prints

Part-paid/part time for cd - Where you receive some payment and some images in compensation for your time.

Tog - commonly used abreviation for photographer.

LADS MAG/MIDDLE SHELF - refers to magazines such as Maxim, Nuts, Loaded, Front, FHM etc as normally found in the middle shelf of your newsagents, although most are rapidly disappearing as demand slumps.

MENS MAG/TOP SHELF - refers to adult magazines such as Penthouse, Hustler, Men Only commonly found on the top shelf of your newsagents.

G/G - girl/girl this refers to a shoot involving two female models. This could involve various levels from fashion only to explicit adult. Always check whats required.

B/G - boy/girl the same applies to this as to girl/girl check what levels are required.


You will often be asked "whats your levels?"

The following is a basic guide to the terms used frequently in the UK, USA and Europe, they are a guide only and by no means definitive. The best thing to do is always to find out exactly what the photographer wants in graphic terms so there are no misunderstandings. Dont be afraid of plain speaking and be prepared to state exactly what you will and will not do. The same goes for photographers, dont be vague, tell the model in plan terms what you expect from her.

Once the levels of a shoot are agreed, no reputable photographer will ask you to exceed them during a shoot. You will get the odd "level pusher" however, and any request beyond what was agreed should be politely but firmly declined and if the photographer persists you are well within your rights to terminate the shoot.

PORTRAIT - Simple as it sounds. Fully clothed portrait style shots.

FASHION - Generally fully clothed wearing particular outfits.

GLAMOUR - This is the most difficult term to deal with as it covers virtually everything from lingerie to explicit adult nude levels. It is best to find out exactly whats required before commiting to a "glamour" shoot.

LINGERIE - Wearing lingerie or swimwear. If you do not do nude work be aware that some lingerie is see through, particularly under flash lighting.

IMPLIED/CONCEALED TOPLESS/NUDE - This is where you may be topless or nude but with with variously no nipples or pubic area showing.

TOPLESS - Breasts and nipples on show.

ARTISTIC/CLASSIC/FIGURE NUDE - Generally full frontal nude, but no explicit poses showing genitals. This could be in the artistic style with no provocative posing or any sexual implications or it could be suggestive glamour style. Some models may interpret this level as more "implied nude" than full frontal so its best to establish this before the shoot.

PLAYBOY NUDE - This is sometimes regarded as the middle ground between artistic and adult level nude. Playboy is one of the least explicit adult magazines. Country specific editions range from fully clothed to mildly explicit nudity. Difficult level to explain. In the UK it could mean anything really, implied nude, full frontal nude, or open-leg. You can see all these levels in various forms of Playboy. In the USA it generally means open-leg. In Europe, its generally regarded as full frontal nude to open-leg. Its really more a style than a level. Very polished, fairly mild adult glamour. Again, its best to ask exactly what the photographer expects.

TOP SHELF LEVELS - Adult modelling is frequently referred to as top shelf levels. This referred to the style found in magazines on the top shelf of your local newsagent and used to be a massive market in itself, making up a large chunk of the glamour industry. This is no longer the case, magazine sales are declining rapidly and being replaced by internet paysites. So I suppose nowadays the term should be Pay Site Levels.

OPEN LEG - This was often referred to in the past as UK MAGAZINE which is a virtually redundant term which was used to describe open leg posing of a style found in UK magazines, which used to be less explicit than their US counterparts, although this is no longer the case. In the USA this level of posing is generally referred to as "Playboy nude". In European countries its often referred to as "Erotic", "Spread-Leg" or "Met-Art style" For the purposes of this glossary, it simply means open leg posing, genitals on display but not holding open or inserting anything.

PINK - Was in the past often referred to as US. MAGAZINE - Basically the "industry standard" level for most UK and US mens magazines and Paysites. Involves open-leg posing with the genitals held open. In the USA this level is generally referred to as "Soft Solo" or "Pink" In Europe this level nearly always referred to as "Pink".

CONTINENTAL - So called in the UK, because at one time this level of posing could only be found in continental magazines. It involves the insertion of Sex-toys or fingers or whatever in the genitals or anus. This level is now found on the website versions of many top shelf mags and on most Paysites. In the USA this level would normally be referred to as "Hard Solo" or "Toys", in Europe its generally referred to as "Dildo"

So when someone offers you a "continental" level shoot, please be aware it is unlikely they mean a trip to San Tropez. You wouldn't be the first model to think "continental" meant a trip to a warm beach....

GIRL/GIRL ARTISTIC - Like artistic nude, nude - no explicit posing.


GIRL/GIRL SOFT - Be very carefull if asked to do this and make sure you know what is required. Some may interpret this levels as the same as artistic, but "Soft" girl/girl in magazine/Paysite terms is an explicit level and involves just about everything short of actual physical penetration with tongues/fingers/toys etc. Just be clear on whats required.


GIRL/GIRL HARD - This level in full on penetration and crosses the boundary between modelling and porn in my opinion and if you wish to do this you would be well advised to take advice from people in the porn industry regarding health precautions, certifications etc.

BOY/GIRL HARD - The same advice as above applies, but even more so!

GONZO/POV - Although originating in mainstream media, these terms have been adopted by the porn industry and I include them because as a model you will get plenty emails from "photographers" asking if you do gonzo or POV. Basically gonzo is where you interact with the photographer or videographer. ie you perform a sex act on him/her while he/she films you or vice versa. POV means "point of view" and is much the same and involves you performing a sex act on the person filming.