Freja Beha, the Rock N Roll Star
i-D Magazine Spring 2010
Ph: Emma Summerton
Styling: Edward Enninful
i-D cover, I have to admit that I didn't have high hopes for her editorial inside. Well, I was most definitely pleasantly surprised by the lovely, albeit too short, only-girl story. Just four shots; all of them upper body ones with one profile shot. They're almost like a series of portraits, and that's what I think is so interesting about them. We haven't seen Freja in a story like this, so it's great to see her continually expand her fashion portfolio and her ability to converse with the camera.
With a story that's set up like this, I really think it's intent is to bring focus to the details of the clothes, rather than the full head-to-toe looks. At least, those details are what stood out to me enough that I ironically ended up wanting to see the runway looks in their entirety anyway. Like, I saw the intricacies in the Louise Golden piece and I just had to see the whole thing for comparison. The details made me appreciate the whole look....and the same can be said for the model.
By focusing on the natural charisma and grace of Freja's face (the details) this editorial makes us appreciate all her abilities as a model (the whole package). Earlier on I asked the question "Androgyny or femininity?" Well, here we have the perfect example of how easily and effortlessly Freja can traveling between both poles. This editorial is a great model profile piece in that it provides the girl with a vehicle by which to display her full skill and range in subtlety and emotion. To be able to carry this off successfully, you have to be a model who's well versed in all facets of human emotion and who's able to convey them with a slight alteration of the mouth here, or a slight arch of the brow there.
With the title bearing Freja's name, it's clear that she's supposed to be the star here and she most certainly delivers even within the limitation of four short pages. I love that she can be strong and dominant, showing us different aspects of her personality here. But she can just as easily be a mere clothes hanger, if the situation calls for it, letting the clothes take focus as was the case in her Vogue UK editorial.
I feel like this is a theme that I continually re-visit: how Freja moves freely about along all these different spectrums. Androgyny/femininity, high fashion/commercial appeal, strong/demure, etc... If I've learned anything from all the time that I spend analyzing and dissecting Freja's career, it's that in order to be a good model-nay a great one-you have to be able to be all things to all people but never lose the essence of your being in the process. It's quite the tall order, but all the tops girls can do it/have done it. Think Raquel. Think Daria. And people believe modeling is easy....well, it doesn't seem so easy to me.
Image Credits: Scans by yala_agni @ Fashion_Screen LiveJournal, style.it, vogue.co.uk