PaperCity Magazine

July 2014 - Houston

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PHOTOGRAPHER SCOGIN MAYO. PRODUCED BY MICHELLE AVIÑA. FASHION EDITOR MEGAN PRUITT WINDER. HAIR BIANCA LYNETTE RIVAS. MAKEUP TONYA RINER FOR BEAUTY FOR REAL. PHOTOGRAPHY ASSISTANT BRITTANY HAVICAN. T hey studded the pages of Sports Illustrated annual swimsuit issues and rocked the runways in Paris, Milan and New York in the hedonistic late '80s and '90s. The trajectory of three of the most beautiful women in the world — super models Chandra North, Julie Anderson and Rachel Hunter — reveals that beauty is liminal, ephemeral, and thankfully runs far deeper than skin and cheekbones. Strip away the fashion and dim the lights, and we find truth in words and get a pinpoint picture of character much more exacting than the lens provides. Steven Hempel talks one-on-one to the trio, who were in town to support their friend and colleague, Elena Davis, and her charitable charity, I Am Waters Foundation. CHANDRA NORTH Stats Born: Dallas Super years: Mid to late '90s Top clients: Valentino, Chanel, Shiseido, Sports Illustrated (five times), Bobbi Brown, Laura Mercier Age: 40 Status: Husband Daniel Blaylock; son Hayden Home: Dallas How did you get your start? I got discovered by another model when I was sitting by a health club pool in Dallas when I was 15. I had short platinum hair and was not exactly commercial looking. I modeled myself after a British model named Jenny Howorth, who was always doing high fashion work in Elle. I had always been fascinated by models, having gotten to go to a Karl Lagerfeld for Chloé show at the Majestic Theatre in '82 or '83. The clothes, hair, makeup … It was for me the epitome of glamour. The challenges of modeling. Where to begin? When I started out, there wasn't really a local market for the look I had, so I quickly learned that I had to compromise in the way I wore my hair. I was also very shy. It took me a while to get comfortable in front of the camera. My mother worked in the couture department at Neiman's, and I would often wait after school in her dressing room and pore over French and American Vogue. It was one thing to see the poses in a magazine, but emulating this in real life without laughing was a challenge. On leaving home at a young age. As soon as I graduated from an alternative Dallas high school named the Anderson school, Lisa Dawson [Kim Dawson Agency in Dallas] convinced me to leave for New York, with Europe following shortly thereafter, and I became terribly homesick. Being in a foreign country was difficult. I think back to losing my way in Paris and getting lost in Morocco — I actually ended up in the wrong city — all alone, and I realize how vulnerable and young I was at the time. I had a great roommate who was a little older and wiser who took me under her wing. Most memorable moment of your career. One of the highlights of my career was walking down Gianni Versace's runway as the bride in the Paris Haute Couture show. It was such an honor to be selected. Another moment I will never forget was a shoot done by Dennis Hopper, and styled by Alexander McQueen for his first collection. Big break. That came when Steven Meisel put me on the cover of Italian Glamour for its grunge issue. I also started doing a lot of runway work because Kate Moss was now on t he scene and got booked for a Gucci campaign with Mario Testino. Kate Moss helped my runway career in that suddenly you didn't have to be 5'10 to walk a runway … It was Tom Ford's first season, and it gave me a huge boost early in my career. Biggest disappointment. I honestly have no real regrets. Obviously, there were times when things did not go perfectly, but I've been very happy and grateful for the career I've had. I was able to see the world and do amazing things that I had always dreamed of. What you love about the job. There is really so much. I like that you can be your own boss. That I've been lucky enough to play a part in creating some amazing and iconic images and gotten to wear the most incredible clothes. I've had the opportunity to travel to exotic places like the Galapagos Islands for Sports Illustrated. And that I was able to do much of it with my son, Hayden. It was amazing to have him as my travel companion, and it's something special that we will always share. I feel grateful that I can look back at the images I was a part of, and that they serve as a sort of photographic diary of my life … I've had my picture taken by some of the most creative and talented people in the world, and that is something that I will always have and will always stay with me. How the industry has changed. The biggest change is that models have a less rigid structure than we had a decade ago. There was a time when you could only do commercial or high fashion, but not both. Now you see a lot of models crossing over. I also feel like models have a shorter career span now and are more quickly replaced; editors are always looking for a new look and a different face. The challenge of transitioning away from modeling. Well, I am still a working model, and I still enjoy getting to work in the fashion business while being a full-time mom. It's really the best of both worlds. Why I Am Waters is important to you. The story of Elena Davis is really an inspiration. She has taken the advantages that she now enjoys and used them to help others in a way that is special and something I love being a part of. If I can lend a hand in SKIN DEEP Chandra North in Rick Owens top and pant, Jimmy Choo pumps. Rachel Hunter in Rick Owens jacket and dress, Jimmy Choo pumps. Julie Anderson in Rick Owens blouse and skirt, Christian Dior pumps. All fashion from Tootsies. Erickson Beamon jewelry from Elizabeth Anthony. Poltrona Frau Quadra sofa designed by Studio Cerri & Associates, 2001, $12,550, at Internum. WITH CHANDRA, JULIE AND RACHEL

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