Monday 16 January 2017

A model friendship: Thalia Heffernan and January Russell on their unbreakable bond

Published 14/05/2015 | 13:29

Thalia Heffernan and January Russell photographed by Kip Carroll for LIFE magazine
Thalia Heffernan and January Russell photographed by Kip Carroll for LIFE magazine

Morgan The Agency beauties Thalia Heffernan and January Russell were brough together through work, but their bond runs a whole lot deeper than that.

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Thalia, Model

January and I met through modelling, about five years ago. This industry is widely publicised as being very bitchy, but that's melodramatic, I find. I'm lucky in that I have connected with a lot of special people through modelling, January, in particular. She's just so much fun! She walks into a room and it immediately brightens up. We have similar interests and when we're working together, no matter what the job is, we manage to make it enjoyable.

There can be a lot of waiting around in this job, but we pass the time very happily. By now, we've worked together for so long that she knows me inside out. I remember one moment I was about to have a total meltdown, everything seemed to tumble and fall apart, and January was there, and knew exactly what to say to calm me down. The moment passed, because of her, and I knew then that I had a really special friendship.

We play off each other very well - if I'm giddy, she'll get giddy, and together we can lift a room when we're on form. We can also cause havoc! January knows the industry, so she knows what the pressures are - things about weight, stress, that kind of thing - and that really helps.

People joke that models always hang out together, but there's a reason for that. It's because we understand each other, and so it's easier for January and me to vent to one another than to our other friends outside the industry, who don't get it because it's just not stuff from normal life.

January, Model

The first time Thalia and I really spent time together was on a test shoot we both did for a photographer, and afterwards we walked back to her place on Leeson Street together. I remember she was wearing her school uniform, and had big, wild, curly hair. She's younger than me, but I remember thinking she was really cool. She's really alive, really fun, she brings everyone together and has a special kind of aura.

Any time I've had relationship problems, with boyfriends or family, I have found that she's great to talk to. She always has a different perspective to me, and that helps. Your good friends are your life, you need to have them around you. Without Thalia, my life would not be the same. She works so hard, and she understands all about the parts of the industry that aren't so good; having her in my life makes me happy, I love her to bits. I know we'll always be friends, even when we're no longer working together.

Sarah Morrissey, Thalia Heffernan and January Russell at the launch of the Marks & Spencer Spring Summer 2015 Collection
Sarah Morrissey, Thalia Heffernan and January Russell at the launch of the Marks & Spencer Spring Summer 2015 Collection

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