If Rihanna says, "We found love," Mario Sorrenti says, "We found Corsica" — which apparently isn't all that different in terms of intimacy or artifice. In the behind-the-scenes video of his calendar shoot for Pirelli the tire company, he explains that he wanted "rocks and trees and woods and all of that coming together in one place," which is why he chose the island as the backdrop for his nudes. He didn't want the photos to look like fashion pictures, he adds, and aimed to "do something sensual but not over the top."
His photos were indeed much simpler than past Pirellis, for which Karl Lagerfeld dressed naked models like Greek gods and Terry Richardson made topless girls hold jungle animals. The models would never say in the video that the whole thing was awkward, even though they were naked and damp (in the video, you can see that there was a guy on spray-bottle duty) in the forest and in creek beds for the shoots, surrounded by bugs and other unpleasantries. So because you probably won't watch the whole twenty-minute video, despite today being Friday, here are some highlights to prove that this calendar is about much more than just some naked models on some rocks.
"The thing about Pirelli is the really great tires, and they're strong and modern and they work, so in the shoot you've got these really strong amazing modern women. So there's this relationship going on between these really strong tires and these really strong women." —Milla Jovovich
"I think every photo shoot should be like this. Just hanging out naked, having your picture taken is so sexy. It's not sexy in-your-face sexy it's a little more innocent sexy ... I'd like to do one every year until I'm 75. I had a perfect day." — Lara Stone
"It's very much about an intimate moment ... and trying to build a conversation without words." — Mario Sorrenti
"We did a few pictures in the forest surrounded by bugs and mosquitoes but [laughs] I still feel really comfortable. This year I feel like it's the beauty of each girl inside. — Natasha Poly
"We've known each other since I was 17; we were boyfriend girlfriend for a couple of years. [Mario] adores women." — Kate Moss
"It's just empowering women, which I think is beautiful." — Saskia De Brauw