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Vice President Elect Kamala Harris' casual Vogue cover causes stir online

Being on the cover of Vogue is pretty much every girl’s dream but when you do make it you want to make sure it represents the best of you. Being vogue of course you expect to be photographed by talented photographers who can do their magic and do you justice.

However when you are vice-president of US, it isn’t just about looking good, it’s also about making sure the message you give to the world around you is a good one. On Sunday 10 January 2021 Vogue released the cover of the February 2021 issue of their magazine featuring vice-president elect Kamala Harris. However the image they chose to portray her received mixed messages. Here is what happened.

US Vogue issued a picture of vice-president elect Kamala Harris wearing a casual brown suit and converse in front of pink satin drapes against a green wall. The picture was shot by Lensman Tyler Mitchell, who was the first African American photographer to land a Vogue cover when he photographed Beyoncé for US Vogue in August 2018. So of course the world expected it to be a good one.

It is claimed that a lot of thought went into how best to represent Harris. The background was supposedly chosen to represent the colours of her sorority at Howard University and the converses were supposed to mark her love of sneakers on campaign trails. The casualness of the image was coupled with the words “By the People, for the people.”

Another picture of Kamala was also released by the magazine later. In this picture Harris looks more formal in a powder blue suit and is standing in front of a gold table with golden curtains. In this picture Kamala appears to be more powerful which is further brought to light with the words ‘Madam Vice President! Kamala Harris And The New America” It has been revealed according to CNN that this was the picture which had been agreed and signed off by Kamala as the cover.

Many social media critics are outraged that Vogue opted to use the more casual picture to represent the vice president calling it “amateurish” and “disrespectful” while pointing out that the celebrities get more attention.

One twitter user explained why it was considered disrespectful writing;

One user responded;

I think it's a photo designed to convey a strong message about whom she is. Look at the pink satin contrasting with the casual, down to earth outfit with the funky shoes. And then the slogan: "By the people, for the people". It conveys everything @KamalaHarris is. I love it.

Many users felt that the gold picture should have been the cover. One user wrote; “The light blue suit is far more flattering and respectful.

A Vogue spokeswoman defended the choice telling WWD,

“The team at Vogue loved the images Tyler Mitchell shot and felt the more informal image captured Vice President-elect Harris’ authentic, approachable nature..."
To respond to the seriousness of this moment in history, and the role she has to play leading our country forwards, we’re celebrating both images of her as covers digitally.”

Whether you think the picture does her justice or not, Kamala certainly looks good in both, but we would be keen to hear your thoughts of the cover. Did Vogue miss the mark? Was it too rushed and does it do her justice?

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