Misty Copeland didn’t prepare for her 2019 Pirelli Calendar Shoot.
The 36-year-old ballet dancer played an exotic dancer in this year’s re-imagined calendar by Albert Watson, and admitted she was able to easily channel her character by "using her body" to tell a story – although she refused to "practice stripping".
When asked by People magazine whether she’d done anything specific to prepare for the job, she said: "No, I feel like I adjust well when I’m in a certain environment.
"I feel like I can take on the character that I’m supposed to be because of the surroundings that I’m in. I definitely wasn’t practicing stripping.
"I think it’s about, again, me using my body and telling a story and, a very human story, and getting to see all these different sides of the character I was playing."
Albert confessed that this year he wanted to create something "more interesting" than models "taking their tops off" for the iconic calendar – and he decided to take a cinematic approach to the images.
The photographer said he hoped to explore femininity in the post-MeToo era and Misty insisted that as a classical dancer, working with a storyline made it easier to "relate" to than an ordinary photoshoot.
She said: "It was insanely exciting and to hear Albert’s vision, I definitely connect and relate more to having a storyline.
"That’s what we do as classical dancers, we tell stories through our movement, so I just loved that concept that I wasn’t just standing in front of the camera posing to make shots for a calendar.
"I could really use my strength, which I think is expression through movement. My character is in a relationship with a dancer, and he actually is a co-worker of mine, Calvin Royal, who plays my boyfriend within this story that Albert created.
"I just think it was captured so beautifully, and just to see all of the struggles, and things that dancers face."