6/01/2017 Sydney NSW, Australia

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Iina (Paparazzi) is the first model I have scouted.

"How did you end up scouting models? Do you just walk the streets and search for tall and skinny girls? What do you look first when you scout? How much you get paid when you find someone?"

These are the questions I usually get asked when I meet new people and we end up talking about our professions. I have found it really funny how interested in people are every time I tell them what I do for a living. It's not a traditional job for sure.

How did I end up scouting?

I got into scouting couple years ago while interning Paparazzi Model Management in Finland. I never thought I could become a scout before my team asked me to look for models from a festival where I was going one weekend. I found one girl and my agency signed her right away. After this, I brought couple more people to my agency while I was still finishing my studies.

After moving to Australia last year I got a chance to work for a local agency. While working there I found out that scouting was really something I wanted to do. I started to trust my gut more and ended up signing really potential talents. After a while, I became a freelance scout which gives me more freedom to travel and scout also outside Sydney. I've found this a perfect job for me because I can combine two of my passions, traveling and scouting.

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Jordan (THE.mgmt) got scouted on a music festival.

What do I look for when scouting?

I scout high fashion models so there are certain requirements for them. These are for example height and age, of course, there are some exceptions but then the girl needs to have something really special. 

It's really hard to explain what I look for because some girls can be really beautiful, tall and petite but for some reason, I don't get the feeling. I have a soft spot for really interesting looking girls. I love unique faces who are not beautiful in the traditional way. For me, scouting girls have always been easier than boys and I have no idea why. 

The best part of this job is to watch your models grow. It makes me really happy to see them booking their first jobs and getting positive feedback. Even though I don't have my own kids yet I can only imagine how does it feel like when your kids achieve something because I get the feeling already with the models I've scouted.

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James (Paparazzi) is one of the only guys I have scouted.

How much I get paid?

This question is always the first one or the one which people are the most interested in. How much do I get money when I sign a model? It's a question I can't even answer because it depends so much on a girl/guy. If I find someone who is 14-years-old I get paid a different amount than what I would get paid for scouting someone who is 18 and ready to work.

As everyone knows anything can happen in those years when girls grow up to women. Some girls who have been super petite when they were in their early teens can get curvy or they don't grow as tall as expected. Agencies spend a lot of time to develop their new faces so it's natural that fees are not as high when scouting younger girls because the school will be their main job for the next couple years.

Some agencies pay commissions instead of finder's fee. In these cases, agencies pay the scout a small percentage every time a model she/he scouted works. I could say that scouting is more a lifestyle than a job. Once you get started you keep scouting subconsciously wherever you go. Finding a great talent doesn't look for the place or time and I'm never on a holiday 100% but when you find someone wow, it's worth it. Fees are pretty good but if you scout one model every other month it won't make you rich. If you are really active and travel after events you will obviously find more talents which also means bigger incomes.

For me, it hasn't been something I do for money. Of course, my goal is to work as a full-time scout but at the moment I want to concentrate on finding top girls to gain a reputation as a  good scout. In the future, I'm hopefully able to travel around the world scouting models, that would be a dream job!

Photos: Matias Jalmari, Michael Ryan

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