Big brands: Stop using alleged sex offender & pornographic Terry Richardson as your photographer

by JamesNYCMarch 4. 2014 09:09

You know your brand is in trouble when there is a petition against you on Change.org and another page on Face Book.

The link to this Change.org petition found it's way into my inbox this afternoon. It appears to have been started late last year which begs the question why have so few people participated thus far.

Those of us working in the commercial photo industry have all heard the stories about Terry R. over the years. We have had tales of excess described over lunch during photo shoots, or in some cases had first hand experiences that reveal in graphic detail his exploits.

Back in 1997 while working at 68 Degrees photo lab here in NYC. the B&W film from the after party of Terry's first marriage came through the lab. We processed and made contact sheets of those rolls of film. The content of which was far more extreme than anything that has been posted on the internet by Terry himself. Something more closely resembling a scene from 'Caligula' with nearly as many people involved. The printer that was tasked with printing up those contact sheets made dozens of extra copies of the contact sheets and passed them around to those that wanted them. So the evidence is probably still tucked away in someones storage space somewhere in Brooklyn.

Little known fact: Most of your professional and personal contact sheets (and images) have duplicates lurking about in some photo lab employees house or are being displayed on their walls.

The links to the images of Terry's exploits are easy enough to find with a simple Google search, and those listed on the Change.org petition page are just a few.

While we in no way condoning Terry's sexual antics with models, he is not the first photographer to take advantage of his position in the photo industry; he's just the only one whom to date has so flagrantly taken to publicly displaying the images himself.

During my time as a Photo Assistant in NYC. I've seen first hand how photographers have traded modeling jobs for sex. And in a few select cases (again 1st hand conversation) a few models have told me point blank that they knew they would get hired for a big money advertising shoot if they slept with a certain photographer before, during or after a casting call; and this was a fully conscience decision on their part. In another instance there was the photographer I worked with that would hold casting calls on a near daily basis just to find dinner dates during that week. His preference was 19 year old red heads.

 The model agencies are are equally complicit because the bookers have full knowledge that these abuses go on and which photographers are the prime offenders; and they tell the models that this is "Just the way it is" and you have to decide for yourself if you want to work with "That Photographer" or not.

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