Client Fires Photographer From Maternity Shoot After Learning She's a Lesbian

A Photographer was sacked from a maternity shoot she had been booked for, and subsequently received a barrage of texts after the client discovered she was a lesbian.

Based in Mobile, Alabama, Faith Grace had been hired by a woman named McKenna. In researching her chosen photographer, McKenna noticed a rainbow flag – that of LGBT pride – on Grace’s personal Instagram account. This is when McKenna allegedly text Grace to say she no longer wished to work together.

McKenna wrote:

I went through your personal Instagram account to get to your photography business account and on your personal pad I saw that you had a pride flag. Are you gay or do you have family that’s gay?

The 21-year-old photographer replied by confirming that the reason the flag featured on her account was because she was, indeed, gay herself.

At this point, McKenna was incredibly blunt about how she felt, stating “I don’t want someone who’s gay to take my pictures.” She went on to explain that she feels it is “not right,” and ultimately that she didn’t want her other child, who is five years of age, to be influenced by someone of that sexual orientation. To add insult to injury, she signed off: “I’m sorry that you think that this lifestyle is OK and acceptable.”

Since sharing the screenshot on Twitter, it has since been shared 38,000 times before Grace made her profile private.

Lead photo credit: Leah Kelley.

[via The Independent]

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131 Comments

Micah Burke's picture

I'm a conservative Christian and a photographer - while I support this client's right to choose her own photographer for whatever reasons - this is stupid. I'm sure she'd be fine with an adulterous or gluttonous person and lifestyle.

Alex Cooke's picture

By contrast, I fully support gay marriage, but I just wanted to say it's refreshing to see someone point out the irrationally selective judgment going on here. Thanks for such a levelheaded and rational response during an era when those are increasingly rare.

jonas y's picture

I believe marriage is a contract between two consensual adults, and often times we have heterosexual couples who choose not to have kids. That was the reasoning behind my support of gay marriage in the first place.

Hans Rosemond's picture

I’m all for healthy engagement on social issues, but to say that marriage has always been defined as between a man and a woman is just not accurate. Marriage is an ancient construct. It’s a contract that far pre-dates any Judeo-Christian connotation on what that contract should look like.

At times in history much earlier than our modern day western definition of marriage, marriage could mean a contract between a man and a woman, a man and several women, same sexes, etc.

Accusations that the left has hijacked the definition of marriage assumes that the right has had the “correct” definition of marriage. That just isn’t true. World history says otherwise. Marriage is a contract used to distribute wealth and better a family unit by uniting it to another. In the West we attach love, procreation, and religious values, but they are by no means necessary to fulfill the defining characteristics of marriage.

Hans Rosemond's picture

Marriage is a word that describes a concept. Not the other way around. Words are products of the people that create them. Does snow exist in the Himalayas even though it isn’t called snow? What about the concept of murder? These concepts are what they are whether they use a Romantic derivative as an identifier or not. Marriage is a contract.

Hans Rosemond's picture

That’s because you’re attempting to define a word by its etymology and not the concept it’s based on. I’m not debating what the word could or should mean according to your background. That’s a different topic all together. Again, marriage is a construct that predates what any political party has to say about it.

Ricky Perrone's picture

Bob Brady has far too much time on his hands.

1)Man and woman are not mentioned in the definition of the word

2) Marriage is not mentioned, not a single time in this article

Anonymous's picture

Ho ho! I hope he uses this dictionary (although I may be slightly biased!). No mention of “a man and a woman here”:

Anonymous's picture

At your service! "Troll" is a fine example of a word whose definition has changed over time. Just like "marriage." Oh, the wonders of
an evolving language!

Hans Rosemond's picture

Sorry, that just isn’t the case. Also, the article you cited above includes numerous references to other unions that don’t gel with the western ideal, all of which it calls “marriage.”

Sean Gibson's picture

Someone once told me, "you can't argue with Stupid". I've stopped trying, you should too.

Mike O'Leary's picture

Ah.... I'm sure it doesn't need to be pointed out to you, but just in case you missed it, it says "the WORD 'marriage'". Marriage as a concept has been around for far longer, whatever words were used to describe it. Religion does not have a monopoly on marriage, neither does it have a monopoly on love. Thankfully, society has progressed since the middle ages. Why does this bother people so much? It's baffling, really.

Mike O'Leary's picture

Fair enough, but why be so bent out of shape over it? Words evolve / change. You seem to be putting a lot of energy into something so trivial. I've to go do some work. Have a good day, Bob.

Deleted Account's picture

Whenever I hear the word "marriage" I'm reminded of this classic scene from The Princess Bride.

Mike O'Leary's picture

That bwessed awangement.

Hans Rosemond's picture

And wuuuuuv.... twuuuue wuuuuuv

Sean Gibson's picture

You said, "I believe in the importance of a female and male element in raising a child."

What element? In a large portion of male/female marriages these days, the female is the more dominant, assertive, decision making person in the relationship, not to mention bread winner. What exactly is it that you think a child can only get/learn from a male, I'm curious.

Sean Gibson's picture

Even the great Christopher Walken can't save your assbackwards thinking. In that case lets go one step further; If I can kick your ass, then maybe you are not fit to be a male role model to your kids. Perhaps I should adopt them, it sounds like I'd be doing them and the world a favor.

Mike Leland's picture

You wanna come kick my ass and adopt my kids too, Sean Gibson? I can give you my address. Or I can come to you for my ass kicking. Whatever’s most convenient for you. I’ll be waiting, sweet cheeks ;) XOXO

Sean Egan's picture

So you must be against all single parents too.

Luke Adams's picture

I think (apart from the internet), you would find a majority of Christians are level headed and legitimately loving people like Micah - even when we have differing beliefs on a topic such as this. Usually, when you come across a rude and offensive Christian like McKenna, it’s not because they are Christian, it’s because they are rude and offensive.

Jon Miller's picture

I was raised in the church and what I cannot stand are the hypocrites that are willing to cast the stone at someone as if they themself has not committed some sin in one way or another. Where is the compassion? where is the teaching that we need to show compassion no matter who the other person is? Saying you have Christian values and showing it are two different things, one is hot air and the other is actually doing something about it. She should be ashame of herself for acting this way.

Douglas Turney's picture

I always wonder this too. Compassion seems to be conditional and this isn't limited to Christians. I see it in other religions, I see it on the right and I see it on the left. Compassion and understanding are conditional and limited to people who think like the person giving the compassion. This isn't right.

Alex Cooke's picture

I’ve generally found people who make sweeping generalizations about such large groups of people to be the irrational ones.

Deleted Account's picture

I agree up until your last sentence and that depends on how they "wear" it. I have no use for people who're in your face about their lifestyle, even if I agree with it.

Eric Mazzone's picture

I hope that idiot already paid for the services, because she does NOT deserve a refund.

Hans Rosemond's picture

That’s what a deposit is for.

Jon Miller's picture

I disagree, if a deposit was taken then the photographer should keep it for this idiot taking up her time. Nowhere does it say you need to declare your sexual preference and that it should be disclosed.

Jon Miller's picture

Deposits are taken for a few reasons one to book the appointment, two to pay for the time taken to book the shoot, no doubt when the client left there was some work that had to be done in preparation. I would not return a deposit based on a lifestyle issue that is not the fault of the photographer but the fault of the client for not checking in the 1st place. Like I've stated before if sexual preference is of concern then the client should have asked up front "Are you gay?" , however in business no one is going to broadcast this or post this in their place of business as it has nothing to do with the photographer being able to do the work.

Sam Hood's picture

...and no professional should be penalised based on their sexual preference which has nothing to do with the services they are offering.

Eric Mazzone's picture

Flag on the play, Red herring argument, 10 yard penalty.

Eric Mazzone's picture

Go look up what a red herring is.

Eric Mazzone's picture

I can, I don't care to. I'll do no such thing, I'm not required to. However by that point, YOU need to provide proof for your completely outlandish ideas are correct. You're nothing but a nutcase trumper.

BTW, philosophy minor with my degree, don't try to argue that you're NOT pulling fallacies out your ass.

Hans Rosemond's picture

A deposit has nothing to do with the issue of gay or not or whether the work was completed. It holds the date. The fact is that a commitment was made and during that time the photographer could have turned away other work that was competing for the same slot of time. The deposit covers a potential loss of other business because of the client backing out of her commitment. Of course, if there was no deposit and no contract all bets are off.

Karim Hosein's picture

A deposit does not guarantee that the photographer will take photos, it guarantees that the client will show up to be photographed, so that they can be billed for the rest on on delivery of the images. Client does not show up, deposit is kept.

If the photographer canceled, the photographer ought to return the deposit so the client can book another photographer. This is not the case. The client canceled, and as such, (regardless of reason), does not deserve a refund.

That being said, the article claims that the photographer was booked, but the text messages posted suggests that they were in discussions. We do not know if the booking was made or if a deposit was made. If it was, then I agree that no refund is necessary, not due to the discrimination, but due to the client cancelling.

This is not the first time such a thing happened. A gay photographer was fired shortly before a wedding because he was gay, and a refund was requested. They said they did not want to support his business, and needed the deposit to secure another photographer. He informed them that, according to the contract, they forfeited the deposit, but, since they do not want to support his business, he would gladly donate the money to a pro LGBT charity in their name.

Karim Hosein's picture

My reply was to your post, «How do you figure? She also didn't take any photos.»

Your post was a reply to the post, «I hope that idiot already paid for the services, because she does NOT deserve a refund.»

So, one person said that they, “Hope,” that payment was already made. No speculation was made here. The issue is not whether a deposit was made, but rather, IF one had been made, no refund is deserved.

Your response suggest that, IF a deposit was made, a refund is deserved, since no photographs were taken.

My response to you, addresses three things;
① The fact that no pictures were taken is irrelevant to the issue of a deposit, IF their was one.
② That the article is ambiguous as to whether an agreement was even made in the first place. In other words, was a booking actually cancelled, (without regard to any deposit), so was the McKenna an actual client or just a potential client?
③ This is not a unique situation.

I read quite carefully. I even read the source article in The Independent, where Grace is quoted as saying, “A lady texted me asking to take her maternity photos then she decided to find another photographer because I’m gay.” So there is no mention that their was a hiring, a firing, or even a client.

Eric Mazzone's picture

$20 says Bob is a member of the cult45 and a homophobe.

Karim Hosein's picture

Not taking that bet. Rather spend $100 dollars on lottery tickets. Better odds.

Andrew Feller's picture

I am a straight member of an LGBT Chamber of Commerce. I am welcomed with open arms into the chamber because its not just about supporting “gays” but rather its about supporting businesses that are friendly towards ALL people. I am so shocked when I meet with LGBT couples for wedding photography and they tell me that they are having a hard time finding a venue or a florist.

While I may strongly disagree with McKenna’s belief that being around a lesbian will effect her kids in some way, it is still her right to not work with a business for what ever reason she like. I truly believe we should all be more vocal about what we believe it is to be a ‘good person’, BUT I also believe that even if we differ in opinion of what that means we should at least treat each other with respect. To add her comments about “lifestyle” or that “its just wrong” was in poor form and unnecessary. She could have been polite about it and just said she was no longer interested in booking her.... McKenna might be a wonderful person with a kind heart, but based on the above transaction one could easily draw the opposite conclusion.

Summary, treat others as you would like to be treated.

Douglas Turney's picture

Andrew I agree with you 100%. Well stated.

Jason Lorette's picture

^^^^ This...well said!

Elan Govan's picture

As I have mentioned here before, I photographed a same-sex marriage in 2008, I am very proud of my small contribution as a photographer and the part I played in making someone else life a very happy one.

Glen Grant's picture

Something does not sit right on this story, the written words does not match up with the 'texts' and it just doesn't sit right. If indeed true then sad.
Photographer shows no prior maternity works either in her IG or Wix acct which is kind of weird considering what she was being hired to do and the client needing to look up their work after hiring etc. again just does not jive with the norm.

Jeff McCollough's picture

Probably some scam propaganda article.

cameramanDop Shanghai Hong Kong's picture

Your sexual orientation should not be a reason to cancel or approve a photographer.
Only the attitude, work and price.

But, I still have something do not understand.
Why posting a LGBT flag at the first place, why answering to the client your sexual orientation?

I always surprise how LGBT (and I have many friends example) feel sometime the need to advertise their sexual preferences? Is it something needed to be put right in the face?
I'm by no mean want to look surprised, but putting a LGBT flag on your IG account will obviously raise the question from stupid people. and consequences that stupid people act stupidly. Is it a way to check if customers are open-minded? maybe

I wish a day there will no need for such sticker in front of bar to says LGBT are welcome, cause, of course; any customers is welcome.

Karim Hosein's picture

Why do my democratic friends feel they need to advertise their political leanings in MY face on THEIR PERSONAL social media accounts? They are just as bad as my Republican friends!

My Jewish friends, Christian friends, and Muslim friends all do the same thing. I can't even begin to talk about my atheist friends! OH, …and cat lovers! What's up with my cat loving friends?!? Do they not even know that I am a dog lover?

Why are all my friends using THEIR PERSONAL social media accounts to advertise THEIR PERSONAL preferences to the whole world?!? Oh, the humanity! …And what about the children? Will anybody think about the children?!?

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