Normally, news that size-14 hottie Ashley Graham would be splashed across the cover of Maxim magazine instead of the mag’s typical rotation of busty size-zero models would be cause for celebration. Yay for body diversity! Yay for Graham! Yay for Maxim! Except when the 28-year-old body-image activist and model—who also recently made headlines after being named Sports Illustrated ’s first plus-size Rookie of the Year—shared the cover shot to Instagram yesterday, her fans were instantly outraged, calling Photoshop on the near-nude shoot.
One of Graham’s followers on Instagram wrote, “Definitely photoshopped. That is unfortunate after everything you stand for Ashley… your curves are gorgeous and Maxim should not have minimize who you are…shame on them!” while another said, “It’s definitely too photo shopped,” and dozens of others expressed their outrage over what looks like some serious digital editing of Graham’s famous curves. As one fan put it, the Photoshop “totally defeats” Graham’s message of body positivity.
Hate to say it (we’re damn tired of calling out magazines on their obsession with Photoshop), but the model’s Instagram followers might be onto something. Compared with her recent Sports Illustrated cover and (not edited) red-carpet photos, which you can see in the gallery above, Graham’s body definitely looks different in this shot. Oh, and Maxim: Booking a body-image activist for your cover, and then photoshopping her body beyond recognition kind of defeats the purpose, don’t you think?