In its May issue, Vogue takes a look at how transgender visibility is changing not just the fashion world, but culture at large. Bosnian-born model Andreja Pejic is the face of the article (online now) and she's photographed by famed lenser Patrick Demarchelier.
Pejic had a track record as a successful androgynous model for both men and women's lines, working for such top designers as Jean Paul Gaultier to Marc Jacobs, and says she was warned by some in the industry that she would lose her career by transitioning. "There was definitely a lot of, 'Oh, you're going to lose what's special about you. You're not going to be interesting anymore. There are loads of pretty girls out there.'" One agent told Pejic, "It's better to be androgynous than a tranny."
The model — described as "regal" and "serene" by writer Alice Gregory — was undeterred. "[My career] is about showing that this is not just a gimmick," she says.
Pejic admits worrying about how her transition could affect more than her professional life. "Being known to the whole world with this transition, I thought, Who is ever going to love me? How am I going to have a relationship with a man if all of this is public? Then I got to a place where I was like, 'I'm successful and happy with what I've achieved. There's nothing I should be ashamed of. You can take it or leave it.'"