6 in 10 members of the population in the U.S. are overweight and 5 in 10 members of the population in the U.K. and Spain are overweight. If the latest health statistics for the general population are true for photographers, than probably at least half of you reading this are overweight. So why are dignified, overweight models an endangered species in stock?
You might contend that our societies prefer to show men and women with impossible bodies (literally, in the case of some photoshop touch-ups) on the covers of magazines, etc. And you might be right. But that doesn’t explain why photographers don’t make photos of overweight models. Believe it or not, clients are looking for those photos. See these excerpts from real researcher/client requests:
“We are always looking for overweight people…”
“Please note, they want an overweight man doing all sorts of typical, everyday activities like eating breakfast at home, leaving his house, getting in the car, driving to work, stopping for coffee, maybe working near a window, eating lunch on a park bench, coming home to his hyper and/or loving kids, watching a little league game outside, riding bicycles with his wife, or roller blading with wife and kids, etc…”
“Also, some slightly overweight people doing everyday things i.e. not on the scale, or eating but just living…”
Please note, they didn’t request photos of obese people on the scale, in bikini on the beach, or stuffing their mouth with fried snickers at the state fair. So, let’s forget about those immature, stereotypical images and move on to show slightly (or less slightly) overweight people living, working, laughing, and loving just like the rest of the population. Like in these images…