News & Runway

Terry Richardson Scandal

There’s so much scandal surrounding fashion photographer Terry Richardson lately you’d think he was a politician. In the same vein as American Apparel’s Dov Charney, the photographer has been accused of using his power in the industry to inappropriately take advantage of young girls.

Richardson has long been known for his controversial, soft porn-like fashion images that have appeared in the world’s top glossies, making the situation even more complex. I mean, am I the only one who knew the controversy was going to be sex-related the second I read “scandal” and “Terry Richardson” in the same sentence? It seems that many fashion insiders have known about possible inappropriate behavior for years, and have been turning a blind eye, given his status.
The scandal broke when Danish model Rie Rasmussen called Richardon’s work “completely degrading to women,” when she saw him during Paris Fashion Week at a party at club Le Montana. When recounting the event to Page Six, the model exclaimed that she told him that “I hope you know you only [bleep] girls because you have a camera, lots of fashion contacts, and get your pictures in Vogue.” Rasmussen’s wrath stemmed from the photographer’s use of unauthorized photos of her in his book “Terryworkd” which featured compromising images of underage girls.
Things picked up steam when Jezebel’s Jenna Sauers ran a slew of similar stories from models who have bolstered Rasmussen’s claims of inappropriate behavior with underage girls. In response, the photographer has taken to his online diary to defend himself saying: “I just want to take a moment to say I’m really hurt by the recent and false allegations of insensitivity and misconduct. I feel fortunate to work with so many extraordinary people each and every day. I’ve always been considerate and respectful of the people I photograph, and I view what I do as a real collaboration between myself and the people in front of the camera.”
Now the big question is, how will this affect Richardson’s career? While I don’t doubt that there is truth to these allegations, if industry trends have shown anything,  perhaps the photographer will follow Kate Moss’ scandal path, and come out of this sadly unscathed.