Now the 33-year-old is re-creating the beauty of ballet in another art form. TheMarch issue of Harper's Bazaar magazine will feature the ballerina in photos reminiscent of works of 19th century French artist Edgar Degas.
In high-end fashions by designers like Oscar de la Renta and Alexander McQueen, Copeland posed to capture scenes from Degas' famous portraits and sculptures like "Little Dancer Aged Fourteen," "The Star" and "Green Dancer."
"I definitely feel like I can see myself in that sculpture—she just seems content but also reserved," Copeland told Harper's Bazaar about posing for "Little Dancer." "I was really shy and introverted at that age. I don't even have an image in my head of what I remember a ballerina being or existing before I took a ballet class. Ballet was just the one thing that brought me to life."