A culture of silence has swathed the fashion industry with those who dare to speak up having their career blackballed in the wake of their sexual abuse allegations. For arguably the most important fashion institution, Vogue, to be tackling this issue, it shows that the tide is finally changing.
In this episode of “The Models,” a new three-part Vogue docu-series which sheds light on the realities of life in front of the camera, several of fashion’s most successful stars open up about the complicated power dynamics at play at every level of the modeling industry in the age of #MeToo.
Many popular models are filmed sharing the terrifying moments in which they were harassed and taken advantage whilst working, even by famous photographers. The women speak openly for the Vogue docu-series The Models, sharing stories about the dark side of the fashion industry and highlighting their own unpleasant encounters.
In the latest episode, high-profile models Carolyn Murphy, Haley Clauson and Gemma Ward talk about inappropriate photographers, cramped model apartments, and sneaky agencies who are more worried about turning a profit than the welfare of their models.
Each of the models recounted times on sets in which the photographers had acted inappropriately.
Carolyn Murphy, 44, a veteran in the fashion industry talked about when she had to fend off a handsy photographer. She says, ''A photographer that I really wanted to work with who was doing a series of nudes for a book,' she said in the video.At one point he came over to kind of rearrange my hair or something and he tried to kiss me! And I pushed him off and I said, "What are you doing? This is not OK with me." Of course, my heart is racing. And I'm thinking, I gotta get out of there, and I did.'' She continues, ''You can't help but think, did I do something to perpetuate this? Did I do something for him to think that it was OK?'
Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue cover girl Haley Clauson, 24, recalled one photographer who also crossed the line at the beginning of her modelling career.
''I was just naturally always sexy, if that makes sense? So I think I would be put into these shoots that were sexier,'' she explains. '''One of my friends took me to the set and the photographer tried to put me in these little tiny bathing suits and was like, "It's OK if things fall out," and I'm like, "No, I'm 13, this is not OK."'
Watch the video below for more model experiences!