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Natalie Portman for T Magazine by Craig McDean

Natalie Portman

Actress Natalie Portman stars in the the cover story of T Magazine‘s Summer 2016 Entertainment Issue captured by fashion photographer Craig McDean and styled by Max Pearmain. In charge of beauty were makeup artist Peter Philips for Christian Dior, hair stylist Anthony Turner at Art Partner, and manicurist Sophy Robson at Streeters using Little Ondine. Set design is work of Shona Heath at CLM, with production by North Six.

It’s strange to have an art that’s largely an instinct. People would argue that there’s plenty of technique to learn, but we all know actors we love who’ve never studied, and actors who drive us nuts with too much technique. Acting is not like music or dance or drawing, where there is clear technique that you need to work obsessively to master, and then your individuality makes you more than just a computer who’s learned a skill. You’re basically trying to be un-self-conscious and use your imagination and lose yourself. Of course there are techniques to help you do these things, but oftentimes thinking about things gets in the way. So searching for freedom in that can be self-defeating. But it’s a challenge I love and am thrilled by when I have a rare moment of overcoming it.

And yes, I suppose choosing to direct now is sort of a symptom of having a long career already at 35 (I’ve been working since age 11, for longer than many of my colleagues in their 50s). Wanting to direct is like what we were talking about before — about transition, passage and replacing old desires with new ones. What I always look for in my work are new challenges — things I’m not sure I can do. And oftentimes I can’t do them, and I fail. But that’s what keeps me interested, and nothing offers knowledge and self-knowledge like failure.” – Natalie Portman

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