Model/actress Emily Ratajkowski has been chosen to grace the cover of PAPER magazine’s new People Issue. For the project, Ratajkowski was captured by model Jordan Barrett accounting for his debut as a photographer. She can be seen wearing styles by Valentino, Schiaparelli, and Max Mara.
In addition to the shoot, Emrata sat down with the publication for a complementary interview. Below we’ve highlighted standout excerpts from the conversation, which you can then read in-full here.
On her creative pursuits that include modeling, acting, and designing:
“I’ve always been really interested in many things. Even as a kid, I was always a little worried that I would spread myself too thin and never be the type of person who would find my passion and do this one thing and do it really well. I was envious of people who did that.”
“Before, being a model was a contradiction to being an actress or being a musician — you couldn’t have a clothing line or be a designer. I don’t think that’s how creativity works… That’s never how it worked for me, I was always someone who was writing, painting, doing whatever…”
Thinking back on the catalytic moment in her career, starring in Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” music video:
“I will [model] for a couple of years, make some money and see how I feel about going back to school. To have something that I was just viewing so much as a 9-5 job turn into something I really was not expecting was super surprising.”
On her sexy Instagram:
“I think of my Instagram as a magazine. It’s a sexy feminist magazine.”
“I am not going to shout from the rooftops that I am smart on a visual platform.”
On feminist empowerment:
“I think that the whole idea that because the body I was given might play into some patriarchal idea, I should be ashamed of it or be covering it up is ridiculous. I find empowerment in celebrating and sharing my sexuality. I think my body is beautiful and a lot of different bodies are beautiful.”
“Activism is a really strange word. Is social media activism? I shy away from that word because I don’t really know what it means. I think of myself as a feminist, and the issues I am most passionate about are social issues.”
On the film industry challenging her the most:
“There are a lot of older white men at the top who still don’t understand that just because you’ve seen a woman’s body, you can also take her seriously. [The film industry] has not found a way to marry the traditional timeline of making a movie with social media.”
On designing swimwear as opposed to apparel:
“I grew up in San Diego, and in the summer that is what you wore. You weren’t even at the beach, but you were living in a bathing suit. I love the confidence that came with that… It fit with my ethos of how I want women to think of their bodies.”
“I feel like I am controlling my narrative. Being able to have the agency to do the swimsuit thing is so empowering to me, and I’m hoping to be able to take that same entrepreneurial attitude to fashion, to film making and beyond and to utilize the tools that I feel lucky to have.”
PAPER magazine’s People Issue is out now.
For more, see Emily Ratajkowski in the trailer for new indie romance, ‘Cruise.’