The photo in question shows the 23-year-old Canadian model wearing a see-through dress that looks almost like it was painted onto her skin. She appears to be wearing nothing underneath.
But Rocha says she was wearing a bodysuit under her dress. A deft graphic artist, using an airbrush, removed it to make her appear nude.
Coco Rocha’s Statement on Nudity
As a high fashion model I have long had a policy of no nudity or partial nudity in my photoshoots. For my recent Elle Brazil cover shoot I wore a body suit under a sheer dress, but recently discovered that the body suit was Photoshopped out to give the impression that I am showing much more skin than I actually was or am comfortable with. This was specifically against my expressed verbal and written direction. I’m extremely disappointed that my wishes and contract were ignored. I strongly believe every model has a right to set rules for how she is portrayed and for me these rules were clearly circumvented.
Needless to say, she was outraged by the move, because it violated her contract and her expressed wishes. In a rare display of outspokenness, she protested in a public statement posted on her Tumblr Web site.
“As a high fashion model I have long had a policy of no nudity or partial nudity in my photo shoots,” she wrote.
“For my recent Elle Brazil cover shoot I wore a body suit under a sheer dress which I now find was photoshopped out to give the impression of me showing much more skin than I was, or am comfortable with,” she added.
“It took me a long time in the business to realize I didn’t have to do everything people told me I should if I wanted a career,” she pronounced.
The use of computer tools to alter magazine images is a long-standing industry practice. Graphic artists often reshape bodies, slimming arms, legs and hips, and give models flawless skin, eyes and hair.
The practice persists, even though it’s been widely criticize for creating an unrealistic female body image that women try futilely to emulate, sometimes with tragic consequences.
Rocha posed for photographer Max Abadian, wearing a Julien Macdonald dress from the designer’s spring collection. It’s unknown whether he, or the magazine’s editors, changed the image.
“I’m extremely disappointed that my wishes and contract was ignored,” she continued. “I strongly believe every model has a right to set rules for how she is portrayed and for me these rules were clearly circumvented.”
“I don’t do nudes, I don’t do semi-nudes, I don’t do cigarette shots,” said Rocha, who is a member of the Model Alliance, which is trying to curb fashion industry abuses.