Getty Images is seeking people willing to be photographed or host a photoshoot for its stock photography collection of people with disabilities.
If you’ve ever wanted to see more people like yourself in the media, you may now have that chance. Getty Images is currently seeking members of the disability community to work with contributing photographers to produce new photos for The Disability Collection, a collection of stock images that seeks to more accurately represent people with disabilities.
This isn’t a typical modeling gig — you don’t need specific measurements or the right look, just a willingness to share some of your life with a photographer. “This project invites you to portray disability as a natural part of someone’s identity, instead of disability as something that needs to be ‘cured,’ ‘fixed’ or overcome,” says the brief that Getty prepared for its contributing photographers. “Disability is intersectional so intentionally include representation across ethnicity, class, age, sexual orientation, gender identification, religion and culture.”
Media stories that touch on disability often include images that are either outdated or contain harmful stereotypes — think hospital wheelchairs and nondisabled models, shots of a disabled person in a submissive pose or shots that focus on a wheelchair rather than the person in it. This is because those are the images often available in stock photography collections, where publishers go to shop for photographs to illustrate a story when they don’t have the time or means to produce their own.
Getty Images, one of the world’s leading sources of stock and editorial photography, is trying to change that. It partnered with Oath and the National Disability Leadership Alliance to create The Disability Collection, which has steadily been adding images since its launch in May 2018. “At a time when imagery is the most widely spoken global language, it has never been more important to produce and promote a visual language that is progressive and inclusive, and to support diverse voices in doing so,” said Rebecca Swift, director of visual insights at Getty Images in a press release.
That’s where you come in. If you want to help the media show people with disabilities as active, engaged members of our communities, complete their photoshoot sign up form. And please share on social media to help get the word out. Let’s start seeing some real wheelchair users in the media.