We’ve got a new model crush – Portia Freeman, who has recently taken a year off to be a mother. We managed to grab her at Charlotte Olympia’s screening of her shoe film, for a quick Q+A as she prepares to take her first steps back into the fashion world after a year off…
Grazia Daily: Now you are making your first public appearance in a year, after having your baby, how are you feeling?
Portia Freeman: Excited! I can actually go out and do stuff without thinking about getting baby sick all over a Dolce dress.
My first job back was with Aubin and Wills and I felt like I was right back in my element playing dress-up and really enjoying it.
GD: Aurbin Wills - were you a little terrified being booked for such a high profile campaign as your first job back?
PF: It happened really quickly, I had only been officially back at work for a day, when I had to see a client and was booked. There was no time to worry about the pressure and shooting with my boyfriend helped make it fun. It was like a mini break as we were filming in the countryside!
GD: How was it working with your boyfriend? After all he is a musician and not a model.
PF: I though it would be awkward and he’d be watching me pose and put me off but it was fine - we were totally professional although occasionally I had to remind him to put me down and stop fondling me (!)
GD: Was he getting a little overly playful then…
PF: Very, the team encouraged him as they wanted to capture the natural chemistry between us.
GD: Have you found the industry has changed any since having your year off?
PF: The industry itself hasn’t changed. It is constantly moving and quite an intimidating thing to get back into. It‘s like a ‘rolling machine’ that you have to slot yourself back into and get on with it.
GD: Has your attitude or approach to modelling changed now you are Mother?
PF: I am so much more at ease with everything and extremely determined now. Nothing even comes close to my son and how his happiness means everything.
GD: Do you have a comeback plan for modelling world domination then?
PF:Be amazing and look amazing! I am excited about taking on the big fish in the pond.
GD: When you found out you were pregnant you were shooting with the likes of Steven Meisel and a muse to Alexander McQueen. Are you hoping to fall back into the fold?
PF: [I] ‘Never say never’ I am going to follow my path and where ever that takes me. Of course I would love to shoot with Steven Meisel again, I felt right at home working with him and you can not plan these things only work towards it leaving the rest to timing and luck.
GD: You are often credited as being stylish and a distinct look, who or what inspires your style?
PF: My boyfriend is a big inspiration and so is Marilyn Monroe; right now I am into power outfits that are visually strong.
GD: Are there any designers that are key to your creating your look?
PF: Charlotte Olympia shoes- always! Dolce and Gabbana create beautiful dresses that express my thoughts through clothes. Since having my son I have curves and Dolce and Gabbana is the sort of designer that can translate that feeling. I adore Chanel; if I could have a whole wardrobe I would, it is so classic. If you had a Chanel jacket you could wear it with anything…yes Karl Lagerfeld!
GD: Finally what are you most looking forward to in 2011?
PF: Having the title ‘working mother’ and getting myself back out there, I think it is going to be quite a proud moment for me.
- Tahirah Conliffe