‘Glee’ Star Heather Morris Has a Black Eye in Tyler Shields Shoot
New photos of 'Glee' funny girl Heather Morris with a black eye are sparking quite a bit of controversy. The 24-year-old TV starlet posed for a shoot in which she is representing a "'Barbie style' housewife," according to famed provocative photographer Tyler Shields, but some people are saying that the shoot makes light of domestic violence situations.
"In no way were we promoting domestic violence. We wanted to do a bruised-up Barbie shoot and that's exactly what we did!" Shields told E! News, defending his artistic vision. In the series of photos, seen above, the McKinley High cheerleader sports a pretty fresh shiner. She's shown wearing a black and white dress and heels as she does typical wifely duties, like ironing, though she's actually tied up by the iron's cord in one photo, and drinking the water from the steam compartment in another.
While many critics are calling Shields' work offensive, and intended only for shock value, he says that his photos are justified. "Our shoot poses a lot of questions, but just like in real life, Heather is definitely not a victim," he tells Us. "More like a really liberated woman."
Rita Smith, the director for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, sees a real problem with the unrealistic tone insinuated by Shields' photos. "If he had stopped with the image of the bruise, [the pics] could conceivably be used as a way to raise awareness about the impact of violence," Smith tells E!. "But the other things do make it look appealing, as if she might be enjoying the process and I don't think that's helpful."
Naturally, our thoughts go back to a very real domestic abuse situation in pop culture: Chris Brown and Rihanna. Smith thinks the photos of Morris make light of that, too. "I don't know what the purpose of the series of photos is other than showing her in a different light," she says. "But there is nothing glamorous about violence and I think the real photos of Rihanna would show that it's not a beautiful thing that happens to you."
Shields is standing by his project -- and even told Us that another 'Glee' star might be next in front of his lens. He said, "It would be great to do Lea Michele next."
'Glee' returns to FOX on Sept. 20.
See Heather Morris in the Studio With Tyler Shields