A Brooklyn creative director claims in a new lawsuit that Kanye West’s fashion brand owes her nearly $100,000 for a photoshoot featuring the Yeezy founder and his sunglasses line.
Katelyn Mooney – a well-established freelance creative director in the fashion industry – said she was contacted by Yeezy employees on Sept. 11 to pull together a shoot in just two days for West’s new sunglasses line called SHDZ, according to her Manhattan Supreme Court lawsuit from Wednesday.
Mooney – who’s worked with brand giants including L’Oreal, Nike and Coke, according to her site – was hired by Yeezy for $110,000, the filing claims.
Mooney ensured that the shoot was ready to go at 7 a.m. on Sept. 13 when West was in town for New York Fashion week, the filing says.
Mooney “frantically” prepared “during one of the busiest times of year in New York City fashion circles,” by securing models, lighting, catering and pre- and post-production for the shoot that she booked to take place at Blonde + Co Studios, the suit claims.
“Kanye West arrived at the shoot, modeled his SHDZ sunglasses, and the shoot wrapped later that day,” the filing says.
Then Mooney delivered the final digital files of the photos a day later on Sept. 14 which, “Yeezy had no issues with,” the court papers say.
Now over two months later, Mooney has only been paid $15,000 of the $110,000 that was agreed upon in text messages with Yeezy employees – despite sending an invoice and her repeated requests to be paid, the suit claims.
Mooney, a mother of three, “has had to take out a significant loan and max out her credit cards just to cover her rent and other bills,” the suit charges. “This abuse of an independent freelancer was the exact type of exploitation conduct,” that New York’s freelance laws were put in place for.
“She put herself out for this shoot on an extremely tight schedule and has had to incur significant debt in order to just pay her rent and bills and support her children because of Yeezy’s failure to timely pay her invoice on this,” Mooney’s lawyer Andrew Gerber told The Post.
“It was her responsibility to deal with all the other vendors for the shoot and because of that it has put her in an extremely precarious financial position because of the non-payment,” the lawyer added.
Someone in accounts payable at Yeezy told The Post by email: “All debts have been paid. We confirmed with her yesterday all amounts due and have submitted payments.”
But Gerber said this is, “absolutely false. She has not been paid.”