Convict Jeremy Meeks landed a modelling contract from prison last year, but he's out of jail now and seems to be working on a fashion project already.
The 32-year-old looked so photogenic in his mugshot that it earned him millions of admirers worldwide and so White Cross Management talent agency recognised his potential and scored him while he was still behind bars. Striking a blue steel pose, he showcases his chiselled jawline, razor sharp cheekbones and baby-blue eyes in the image.
Following his release, Meeks posted a photo on Instagram alongside his manager Jim Jordan, hinting he's already working on fashion shoots straight away. He captioned it saying: "I want to thank my family and everybody for all your love, support and prayers. I'm overwhelmed and grateful for what lies ahead. I'm ready."
Being recruited from jail to become a fashion model is indeed one of the rarest ways of doing so; if not the first and only time it’s happened. Being in prison would seem to be no barrier to a potential fashion career.
Meeks' scouting is a more extreme example of the sometimes unusual places new faces have been discovered.
Kate Moss, Britain’s supermodel since the nineties, was discovered at the age of 14, at JFK Airport in New York, by CEO of Storm Model Management agency, Sarah Doukas.
Also, while on holiday in Cape Town, South Africa, Doukas discovered Victoria’s Secret Angel Behati Prinsloo.
Candice Swanepoel was discovered when she was shopping at a local flea market with her mother and Claudia Schiffer was discovered at a nightclub in Dusseldorf, Germany.
According to Lanny Zenga, scout for One Management, McDonald’s has become the hotspot for fresh model talent. Likewise are high-street fashion shops such as H&M, Urban Outfitters and Zara, as well as “touristy areas”.
Jourdan Dunn, for example, was discovered in Hammersmith's Primark in 2006.
Zenga told Fashionista in 2013 that other good places to scout are music festivals and concerts, and that the best new model talent is in Europe, particularly in Denmark and the Scandinavian countries. “When I went there a couple of months ago every girl on the street was scoutable,” he said.
But besides unusual places, some other unique personalities, with no fashion background, have landed big gigs in the industry. Take Conchita Wurst as an example, the drag queen and winner of Eurovision 2014, who appeared at Jean Paul Gaultier’s haute couture show and on a CR Fashion Book photoshoot by Karl Lagerfeld.
"Hot felon" Meek is another unique example. He was convicted for two years for felony possession of a firearm, but not that he's been released, a modelling career will change his fortune.
“I'm in a place where I will be able to provide for my family and really change my life,” the Californian told ABC News.
Don’t be surprised if you spot him in high-end fashion campaigns soon.
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies