Rebel with just cause
A 17-year-old who left school after a dispute over uniform is packing his bags for Milan Fashion Week.
Finn Andricksen was discovered late last year sauntering along Putiki Rd on Waiheke Island by Ursula Dixon - an agent with N Model Management in Auckland.
He'd only recently been asked to leave Waiheke High School where he says he'd had a strained relationship with some of the staff and at one point had refused to wear uniform trousers - instead substituting them for trendy tapered ones.
Dixon, who lives on a houseboat alongside Wharf Rd on Waiheke, is delighted with her find.
She says Andricksen is ridiculously good looking and has everything he needs - the right height and personality.
"He's a sweetie. The industry is really about personal skills as much as anything - it's the thing that gets you jobs.
His parents are lovely too, really chilled."
Andricksen has already completed several fashion assignments for the agency, including a casting for Calvin Klein, shots for NZ Weddings magazine and a L'Oreal Colour show for Huffer.
Now he is off to Italy where he will spend four weeks at designer castings before Milan Fashion Week in June.
He will be under contract to Italian agency 2Morrow for the duration after being hand-picked by scout Alessandro Bandini on a flying visit to N agency.
Andricksen is the only male model in development at the Auckland agency to be going and he will be sharing a flat with male models from around the world.
"But people shouldn't make assumptions," the 1.88-metre teen says.
"I'm really excited. The trip could be the start of a big, international career."
Dad Peter is paying for a personal trainer to help with muscle tone and healthy eating is a given.
Andricksen is a bartender at the island's Oyster Inn and says owners Jonathan Rutherfurd Best and Andrew Glenn, former marketing director for clothes chain Top Shop, are pleased for him.
"Milan Fashion Week is one of the most important fashion events in the world and we're excited for Finn to experience that," Glenn says.
So is Waiheke High School deputy principal Tony Sears, who says Andricksen has always been passionate about clothing and would also do well as a designer.
"All power to him. For some people, in spite of school, they make it on their own and we wish him well."