Ms. Ward’s mission was tabloid catnip, covered in The Mirror, The New York Post, The Sun and The Daily Mail. The author of the Mirror story, Milo Boyd, said that he knew fairly quickly that it would be popular with the tabloid’s audience, as it offered “a new way to present a hard-to-read story.” (The hard-to-read part referred to the fires.)
“It’s a nice combination of someone beautiful doing something philanthropic and doing it in a quite humorous way,” he said. “Our readership I think is one with an appreciation of good-looking people and also one with an appreciation for an ethically centered story.”
Before she announced her nudes-for-charity campaign, Ms. Ward, who makes money through the pornographic subscription service OnlyFans as well as more traditional modeling jobs, had about 30,000 followers. Within days, she had more than 220,000 followers and Instagram had banned her account. Instagram said in a statement that it did not allow its users to offer nude images.
Charitable donations raised through nude pictures are not always smiled upon by the charities themselves. David Marshall, a personal trainer in Australia who posts nude pictures and videos on OnlyFans, said that in 2018, when he tried to donate $5,000 to a charity supporting mental health, he was turned away. He was told that, while he could keep donating, the charity did not want him to mention its name on social media. He chose to donate the money to another organization.
Mr. Marshall said in an interview that he appreciated Ms. Ward’s efforts, and that he personally has donated $3,500 from his OnlyFans income toward similar wildfire relief efforts.
For her part, Ms. Ward rejected the judgment of anyone who might question her methods. “To be quite blunt, I don’t think anyone affected right now is going to be like, ‘Oh I don’t want that money because it came from a girl who’s selling their nudes.’”