Tess Holliday hasn't stopped making waves in the fashion and modeling industries since she was signed to MiLK Management and it looks like she has no plans to stop bringing the fabulousness any time soon. Her latest test shots for the agency show all of the model's gorgeous angles with Tess Holliday in her underwear. Shot in gorgeous black and white with minimalist styling, the set of photos show off more than Holliday's underthings: They show why Holliday is continuing on the course to becoming one of, if not the, most famous plus-size model to date.
Just weeks after landing on the cover of LA Weekly , Holliday smolders in the moody photos that are already making headlines. "I want to challenge society's perception of 'beauty' and what's acceptable in our industry and the world," she told The Daily Mail. "There is no one way to be a woman, or to be beautiful. We all deserve a place."
Her glossy trademark auburn waves cascading over her shoulders and her sculpted, bold eyebrows arched perfectly lend to the stripped-down glamour, allowing the viewer to see Tess in a different light than the usual glamorous pinup. While I adore her signature look, this test shoot makes so much sense: Without her crinoline skirts and pompadour, it's so easy to see her versatility and imagine her in just about any kind of campaign. If dreams do come true, hopefully that will be a reality very soon. It's not the only reason that this shoot is so powerful, though.
Seeing a woman, and not just any woman — the largest signed plus-size model, who is also covered in tattoos and is not your typical "model height" — in her underwear feels like the smell before the rain or the stillness before a storm: It's a sign of things about to change. While Holliday is just one woman and one way of being a woman, in an industry where a single body type is exalted and where size 10 is considered "plus-size," seeing her in her underwear and having a good time feels a bit revolutionary. Of course, a revolution is never a single moment, and I hope this is the moment that opens the door for other plus-size people to be seen just as they are and just as they want to be.
Being able to see this woman (who society has lashed out against and tried to silence) demand to be seen is undoubtedly powerful. Why? Because it helps to normalize this type of body in the media. Every single plus-size woman in lingerie is a diversified image from the mainstream media's barrage of "Angels" or celebrities in lacy underwear. Images like this contribute to the kind of normalization that will hopefully make being a plus-size model in underwear a non-event. They helps contribute to a society where we see all body types as valid and worthy. And that's what the body positive and size acceptance movements are all about, after all.
Images: Charlotte Hackett/MiLK Management; tessholliday/Instagram