Here's the deal: You may have seen the 22-page portfolio Steven Meisel shot for W's September 2011 issue. The editorial features black and white "before" and "after" shots of big-name models like Raquel Zimmermann, Jessica Stam, Karen Elson and Carolyn Murphy. The story was a big get for the mag, considering Meisel had never worked with W before. Thing is, Meisel produced a strikingly similar editorial for Vogue Italia's August issue. WWD noticed the nearly identical spreads, and has it from a source that Meisel may have financed the Italian Vogue shoot on W's dime. Neither W nor Steven Meisel has commented on the issue, however a fallout--or at least a fault line--is bound to happen soon.
Marquita Pring, Tara Lynn, Candice Huffine and Robyn Lawley--all "plus" size models--are the stars of Vogue Italia's June issue. Whereas Pring was once relegated to Vogue Italia's "curves" section online, this month she's just another model in a smoldering black and white 10-page Elizabeth Taylor-inspired editorial for the mag shot by Steven Meisel. Tara Lynn, Candice Huffine and Robyn Lawley grace the cover. "Never before have four curvier girls been in a spread shot by Steven Meisel with no specific purpose at all," Pring said. "No size issue, no color issue. Just beautiful, normal Italian Vogue." Pring kept a diary during the two-day shoot. She chronicled everything--her nerves, emotions, the clothes, the makeup (the makeup artist uses what she calls the "Naomi kit" on Marquita which is usually used for Naomi Campbell), and how it felt to get naked for Steven Meisel--minute by minute. The shoot, Pring says, was "one of the most incredible experiences of my career/life." But she almost missed out on it.
We've already gotten a look of Kate Upton's first-ever Vogue cover, and now Vogue Italia has released the corresponding editorial and video, shot by Steven Meisel and Gordon Von Steiner, respectively. The video is undoubtedly high fashion, but it's high fashion the Upton way (read: over-the-top sexy).