The search for nude photos of newly unveiled 2011 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition cover girl Irina Shayk has begun. As media websites like Huffington Post publish model pictures and the cover shot and the latest swimsuit issue of Sports Illustrated hits newsstands everywhere and the beautiful Russian model graces a giant billboard in New York City to promote the magazine, the Internet turns to the more prurient pursuit of finding photos of the 25-year-old in less than she wears for the sports magazine. Although some will find her topless and in bodypaint in earlier Sports Illustrated issues, they are not full reveals. Still, some will find her nude in GQ Spain‘s December issue. And yet, although the photos are real, Irina Shayk’s nudity is not…
Back in December, Shayk not only was making headlines as soccer great Cristiano Ronaldo’s girlfriend but also for posing nude in GQ Spain. Instead of the usual interview fare about the naturalness of being nude, Irina Shayk sued GQ Spain for breach of contract. As the Huffington Post reported, posting a statement from a spokesman for Shayk’s agency, Elite Model Management, the model was both a victim of “photoshop” and breach of contract.
The statement read, in part:
“Model Irina Shayk is a victim of photoshop andGQ’s Spain negligence in her recent cover, editorial and feature in the magazines December issue. The intimissimi ambassador dawns the cover in an Intimissimi lingerie body suit but unfortunately was photoshopped to appear naked in 3 images of the 14 page spread.”
The statement went on to say that Shayk had been dressed in lingerie and the photos taken of her by renowned photographer Vincent Peters were “artistic and tasteful.” It was alleged that “due to negligence on GQ‘s part it seems as if Ms. Shayk ‘poised’ for pictures entirely nude, which is false.” To make matters worse, Shayk was supposed to have final review of the photos, the cover image, and the content of the interview but was denied these as well.
GQ Spain was also accused of defamatory marketing tactics, printing a caption on the magazine that read “Want to see Animal Irina Shayk nude?” Shayk’s management called the tactic “shocking and unacceptable” from such a “prestigious publication.”
But in the end, the bottom line is about sales. And nudity sells.
If the model’s allegations of photoshopping her as nude are true, GQ Spain seems to have chosen profit over contractual obligation, possibly to the financial detriment of the publication. But that choice, the choice of showing women nude or in swimsuits (which, in some cases, are as near to nude as a model can get) in magazines to sell copies, is a time-tested successful marketing strategy. It was the reason behind Sport Illustrated first publishing a Swimsuit Edition in 1964 — and why, 47 years later, it remains popular and Sports Ilustrated‘s best-selling issue on an annual basis.
As for those nude photo searches on the Internet of the new Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition cover girl? Most doing the searching will not care that they are photoshopped.
But Irina Shayk cares.
The 2011 Swimsuit Edition is Shayk’s fifth appearance in Sports Illustrated. It is her first cover.
“Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue 2011: Kate Upton and Irina Shayk Photos Inside,” HuffingtonPost.com
“Irina Shayk Sues GQ Spain For Photoshopping Her To Appear Nude,” HuffingtonPost.com