BEAUTY MARKS: Rankin, designer Steven Tai and the U.K. charity Changing Faces have worked on a project that thrusts women with disfigurements, marks and scars into the spotlight, and aims to shatter conventional notions of beauty.
“Portrait Positive,” a book and campaign, was conceived by Tai and Stephen Bell, a London-based events manager, and features images of 16 women with visible facial and bodily differences. The women were shot by Rankin and are wearing designs by Steven Tai. It launched this week in London and retails for 29.95 pounds.
The book is available to purchase on the Portrait Positive web site and at stores, boutique and art spaces across the U.K. and proceeds from sales will support Changing Faces’ work. The charity is for 1.3 million children, young people and adults who have a medical condition, mark or scar that makes them look different.
“Living with a visible difference, you are literally judged by your appearance and compared to what I think is a fake idea of what it is to be beautiful or even ‘normal,’” Rankin said. “The only way to shift this perception is to talk about it and face it head on.”
Three of the women walked in Steven Tai’s show earlier this month at London Fashion Week, and all of them are wearing outfits from the designer’s spring 2019 collection. The collection took Sofia Coppola’s “The Virgin Suicides” as its theme and drew on aspects of Seventies dress. It featured disco metallics and daytime silhouettes, including A-line skirts and safari shirts.