Five minutes with Helena Christensen

Who run the world?

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When ELLE caught up with Helena Christensen at the unveiling of her latest photography efforts last week, we couldn’t have been any more thrilled to see how pumped and inspired she was about the power of woman.

Her latest project, Iron Girl, is a collaboration between Rika Magazine and MATCHESFASHION.COM. Along with fellow photographer Jen Carey, the former model shot 28 portraits: a series of powerful images featuring strong, independent and creative women, including model Dree Hemingway, music extraordinaire Mimi Xu, and actresses Josephine de la Baume and Julianna Moore.

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Digging to the deeper meaning of the Iron Girl sweater (available exclusively at MATCHESFASHION.COM, and visible in each shot), Helena revealed to ELLE what kept her inspired throughout the project and why she doesn't know the secret to creating the perfect picture…

What is it, do you think, that makes the Rika Iron Girl sweater so special?

I like the double effect of iron being very strong and powerful and a girl being seen as delicate, poetic and vulnerable – but at the same time, the girl is also powerful. For me, it’s almost like the difference between the two is a beautiful marriage in a woman. Being both strong and vulnerable, being emotional and hardcore, being able to multitask and at the same time show so much concentration on her children and family… It’s a very good time to be a woman right now. There are possibilities that weren’t before and you can now feel the bond between women.

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What’s it been like taking portraits of such influential women for this project? Any faves?

All of these girls were joyful. They are all very creative and inspire me a lot – whether it’s an artist, singer, painter, designer, writer, or actress. To do a portrait on somebody whom I’m hugely inspired by makes me feel very excited. Hopefully, I got their personalities out on these photos.

What inspires you the most?

Just by being a human being in the world, you cannot help but be inspired by everything that’s happening in the day; the visuals, the colours, other humans, the faces and bodies, nature, absolutely anything that passes me by. Life is incredibly inspiring and the fact that you can document this all with a camera is a great invention.

Do you have any secrets for capturing the perfect picture moment?

No. I wish I had that secret. I think you keep searching for that your whole life. And it’s extremely rare that you find a perfect moment, but it may be the imperfect moment that was perfect. I feel that the most interesting photography lies in the accident.

My motto is: ‘Don’t look for the perfect, but look for the moments in-between.’

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