When we spoke to director Jenny McQuaile last year, she was pushing her model diversity documentary Straight/Curve through the final stages of a Kickstarter campaign. "Real change is happening right now, and it is snowballing," she said. "A lot of people are worried that this emergence of the curvy woman is a passing trend, but this time, I honestly feel it is here to stay."
Nine months later, McQuaile's documentary feels like something we need now more than ever. Its body-positive message is empowering, but unapologetic. McQuaile doesn't just source opinions from models and impressionable young girls — she demands answers from those with the power to really make change happen. A new trailer for her documentary includes perspectives from fashion industry insiders such as agents, casting directors, and designers. "I think it's incredibly dangerous to see such a narrow representation of bodies," says Becca McCharen, who has tirelessly championed model diversity at NYFW with her boundary-pushing brand Chromat. "When you open up a magazine and see beauty ads with all white women," she says, giving "diversity" its most inclusive interpretation — "I want that to be shocking." We still have a long way to go, but the idea no longer seems inconceivable.
Text Hannah Ongley