Photographer and YouTuber Speaks up on Alleged Industry Abuse by Photographers, Models Recall Worst Experiences

In light of the barrage of recent allegations against top industry photographers, Jessica Kobeissi is utilizing her platform on YouTube to shed light on what she describes as “the dark side of modeling,” sharing stories she’d heard from females she’s worked with.

At one hour long, the video covers everything from harassive text messages and Instagram DMs, to the details of some of the physical abuse models have suffered. The video paints a dire picture of the state of the industry, making it apparent that the alleged actions of photographers like Marcus Hyde are not at all uncommon.

Kobeissi goes on to explain:

This is not just specific to females and I want to make this very clear. There are male models as well who are abused. I want to just say that out loud because a lot of the times we focus on the females and it does happen to male models.

She shares numerous stories, talking through the way in which these interactions typically take place. She even offers pointers for new models, illustrating red flags so that others can dodge these kinds of photographers altogether.

As a human, YouTuber and photographer with a large platform and close friends who are models that have experienced harassment, I feel responsible to speak up about this serious issue plaguing the photography and modeling community. I hope I do this topic justice. I hope it’s good enough.

Watch the eye-opening video now.

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Leigh Miller's picture

Good...timely information.

Also I think "models" should take personal inventory as well so that they aren't strung along and taken advantage of. If you're short, curvy etc and some guy with a camera is telling you that you have a future in the big leagues there is a problem.

5'9' and up...a certain body type which can usually only be set aside if you have "that look".

Not to say that you can't be a model, but be realistic about the genre that applies to you. Any guy that needs a camera to sleep with women is a weirdo to be avoided.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

I am gratified that Jessica Kobeissi had the courage and will to create this video, to tell a story that, I feel, needed to be told, and needs to be at the forefront much more than it presently is.

Being a portrait photographer, I've heard the stories, some verbatim, as Jessica describes in her documentary, and am shocked this is as wide spread as I've gathered.

I do hope Jessica manages to get the word out to both models and photographers, as the "weirdos's", for lack of a more colourful adjective, need to be exposed and kept away from those whom they'd pray on.

No one seems to care. Photographer brags about 'pushing a model's limits' on a nude shoot no one seems to care because they are fellow travelers or depending on that money

Rob Mitchell's picture

Nice article.
Then I see this? Rather choice ad to have displayed in the article page, no?

Before anyone starts to Bellyache about cookies and my fault for picking up dodgy ones from my surfing practices. I can assure you, that isn't the case :p
We're surrounded by this BS lately. I'm no prude but I'm just fed up with the exploitation and abuse of anyone, even more so in the industry I work in.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

This is why I use uBlock Origin with MULTIPLE extra filter lists installed in all my browsers (Safari, FireFox), as I don't want this crap getting onto any of my machines, this includes my iOS devices (1Blocker X).

If a website throws up one of those "We've detected an Ad-blocker and won't show you our site" BS messages, I blacklist that site and find an alternate, because I know the hidden scripted payloads many of these ads carry, that can activate even just by being visible on your screen.

Daris Fox's picture

Build a OpnSense box and use PiHole, far more efficient as it protects the full network and devices. It's what I use, as I got fed up of reading network intrusion alerts from ad scripts. It also is a major bandwidth saver.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

Right now my network is protected with a Ubiquity EdgeRouter X (surprisingly fantastic little, and affordable router for the technically-inclined), but believe me, I’m one-step away from doing so for my home network.

Trouble is that doesn’t work when you’re on the go, hence my reliance on ad blockers as much as possible.

The Internet we live in today unfortunately :(

Logan Cressler's picture

Check out the Opera browser. Doesnt track you, has a built in free VPN, has free ad blocker by default, loaded with a lot of features that opera always has had as well. The free VPN is a relatively new option. (Its unlimited too).

Edison Wrzosek's picture

I've evaluated it, and whilst tempting, I stopped looking at it as viable the moment I found out who bought the company, and that the VPN hasn't been fully vetted.

Besides, already pay for TorGuard Proxy and VPN services, and bought Viscosity VPN client for my systems, so the appeal of Opera wasn't there.

Thank you for the suggest though, not often I hear people even talk about that browser these days!

Daris Fox's picture

Agreed, and it's a major issue in all industries but predominantly in the Arts in general as they're poorly regulated and turn a blind eye to all the abuses even when the victim comes forward. It doesn't help when police do victim blaming as happened to a model who got violently raped by a photographer. That's just one story I've heard over the decades I've been involved with theatre and photography.

It's not just the industry that has to change it's world view point on how we deal with abuse and respect individuals rights. Too long has there been a 'couch casting' attitude to these industries and until that changes nothing else will.

George Popescu's picture

It's ironic she says that just because models look happy in a video or in photos doesn't mean they're happy during the photoshoot, then at the end, she shows videos of her and her models hugging and smiling and looking all happy...but were they happy during the shoot? Who knows?

George Popescu's picture

It's ironic she says that just because models look happy in a video or in photos doesn't mean they're happy during the photo shoot, then at the end, she shows videos of her and her models hugging and smiling and looking all happy...but were they happy during the shoot?

Jeff McCollough's picture

They were probably all annoyed to death as I am if I ever have to watch one of her videos.

Jacques Cornell's picture

Then don't watch. Reality is so inconvenient.

Jacques Cornell's picture

And so, you literally don't know what you're talking about. Maybe you should move on to another article.

Jacques Cornell's picture

Dude, you already admitted you don't watch the videos. Ergo, you don't know what you're talking about.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

Wow, that comment is so inappropriate given the context of the video, you should really think twice before saying that...

Jeff McCollough's picture

People have already commented a lot on this video saying how what was talked about in 1 hour could have been covered in one article.

Nobody is saying that the topic isn't relevant so don't go around making everyone out to be the bad guy.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

Finding reason to complain about a serious topic just because the author took an extended period of time to cover it the way she saw fit is disrespectful to said author, and to the topic in general.

Is it really so disconcerting to you, and those others who’ve complained, that this video was as long as it was? There are better things to complain and whine about than something like this, especially given the subject matter.

If Jessica felt she wanted to express herself on this topic for as long as she did, that is her creative choice. No one is holding a gun to your head forcing you to watch the whole thing. Not to mention the way you put it was disrespectful, so my original comment stands, especially after your follow-up comment.

Jeff McCollough's picture

And my comments stand too as I am free to state my opinion. If you don't like it then just move along.

Jacques Cornell's picture

Having the right and BEING right are two different things.

Jeff McCollough's picture

Obviously. Hence the word "opinion".

"sharing stories she’d HEARD from females she’s worked with."

who can vouch if theyre legit.

I shoot weddings but know other photographers who shoot other areas and never have I seen anyone I know or work with be anything less then professional with those they hire or work with.

a lot of huff and puff on a small amount of bad apples.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

Just because YOUR experiences don't lend credence to situations like these occurring, does not translate into them NOT happening as much as inferred in Jessica's video.

Please try being less ignorant and closed off to the possibility of this actually being true, cause guess what, it is.

Please try being less naive and closed off to the possibility of this actually being false, cause guess what, the USA of fake news and huff and puff, it isnt.

I love arguments with US'ers. they are the most naive most drama, fake, and over exaggerate impulsive people, then any other nation on earth. you definitely get laughs with them.

just like that recent situation with the street photographer who was bashed for taking images of people in the streets. witch hunt

it entertains me to watch americans online. who needs netflix. I can laugh and be entertained from you guys all day long.

Edison Wrzosek's picture

First of all, I’m Canadian, let’s get that out of the way.

Second, you have ZERO credibility with your idiotic stance that categorize all of the US citizens into the fake news and “huff and puff” categories, amongst others you’ve equated them to.

Has it ever occurred to you there is a sizeable portion of the population down there that detests what some in their society have reduced themselves to and don’t believe in any of that?

Grow up.

You figured it out, all the deluge of stories is a conspiracy by a few models. Has nothing to do with maybe models being afraid of black balling or other retaliation

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