Yesterday wasn't my first nude shoot. Technically it was my second as I had had a dermagraphia based nude shoot just the week before. Although my shoot with Dan Smith from Duke University in Durham, NC certainly was longer and more detailed. I felt oddly comfortable (considering I'm not used to getting naked in front of people I barely know).
Why did I do it? Firstly there's an element of feminism- as someone once said to me "if a girl is naked, it's sexual, period". Automatically connecting nudity and the female body with sex is regressive. It's not even just about stifling female sexuality because nudity is not automatically the same as sexuality, but rather about women not being seen as blow up dolls- toys for the whims of others to satisfy sexual desire. Our bodies are our own.. sure, they're for sex and sex is enjoyable! Fantastic even! but they're so much more than that. They move us through our lives, they bare and nurture children, they go to work, watch TV, exercise, eat, sleep.. they are our very existence and that existence cannot be reduced to just sex. More so, however, is the idea that fat bodies can be beautiful, artistic, and inspiring, is revolutionary (in modern times- fat people in art throughout history isn't uncommon). We've created a society that is disgusted by and loathes fat. We don't want to see it and we don't want to hear about it unless it's about how bad and awful it is. Even the fatties of the world internalize and agree with these messages of hate, turning that loathing on themselves and abusing their own beautiful, wonderful, life sustaining bodies.
This is the first shoot that I'm posting that was totally nude. For those of you on the journey to self acceptance, you know that it's a hard road. For me, this was such a huge step and one I haven't truly overcome. As any fat acceptance blogger will tell you, there are good days and bad days.. and it still seems impossible to truly overcome years- a lifetime- of abuse and brainwashing. Please take comfort in the fact that I am not special, I don't have more courage than anyone else, and everyone is still somewhere on their journey- it doesn't matter where, as long as you keep moving forward.
I liked so many of these globe photos that I decided to make them their own post. So here it is and, remember, all the world's a stage. Have fun.