Photographer sparks outrage after charging an extra $100 to photograph plus-size models
A photographer has charged $100 more than his “standard” price to take pictures of plus-size models, and the internet is fighting back.
Megan Mesveskas is a 24-year-old model and founder of the Model Nexus agency, which specializes in body diversity. On Friday, Mesveskas took to TikTok to share an email she received after contacting a well-known photographer, William Lords, asking about his rates and availability to photograph some of his clients. The photographer’s studio manager responded with two separate prices for the photo shoots. The price to shoot a “standard” model was $950, but the price to shoot a “plus size/curve” model was $1,050.
“Yes, you read that right,” Mesveskas said after sharing a screenshot of the email correspondence. “A curve or a plus size model will cost a hundred dollars more.”
The video received just over 1,600 likes on Mesveskas’ TikTok account, but went viral when other models and members of her agency shared their outrage over the price discrepancy.
Sixtine Rouyre is a model signed to Model Nexus with over 600,000 followers on her social media platforms. After viewing Mesveskas’ TikTok video, Rouyre responded with his own message to the photographer.
“This is just one more example of how awful the modeling industry is for literally anyone above a size zero,” Rouyre said in the TikTok video, which has over 97 views. 000 times. “How does it make sense to charge more because the person standing in front of you, whom you are taking a picture of, is taller?”
The fashion industry has been slowly making strides towards body diversity, with brands such as Abercrombie & Fitch and Victoria’s Secret offering size-inclusive clothing and designs in their new collections. In fashion terms, the plus size category is used to refer to models who are larger than size eight, although this definition is hotly contested, with body positivity campaigners pointing out that most plus size clothing does not begin until one size 16. Although plus size has different meanings for everyone, models who don’t fit the size zero mold are still discriminated against in the fashion world.
After being outraged by his awards, Lords said Newsweek that the reason it charges $100 more for curvy models is because of the “time and cost it takes to get ‘creative, high-end’ clothes for the models ‘on par’ with the clothes offered to the models” straight waist”.
“$100 is absolutely nothing compared to what I’m doing for these girls,” he said.
While Lords thinks his extra prices are fair, Rouyre believes this is just another example of fatphobia in the fashion industry: “Your fatphobia is showing up, it’s really disgusting and you should be ashamed of yourself.”
The Independent has contacted William Lords for comment.