Commodity Bodies

Matt Bottos - Tuesday, April 09, 2013

I am regularly running workshops helping photographers to photograph the female nude. In one workshop the theme for the day was about not being competitive in a cold way. The concept or philosophy being that we humans tend to compete against each other in a need to protect ourselves and also to have control. This is also very apt for women with bodies and faces like the model I photographed in this particular workshop. I believe that this model's body is beautifully shaped and when viewed gives a sense of abundance. However I also sense that she is yet to consistently connect to her body in a warm way. She has had a history of being used, abused and rejected and this has had her become mechanical with her body and looks.

This is natural as things of great beauty and value are often treated as commodities. This creates need and when needs are not met with abundant supply we tend to become fearful, angry and frustrated. With attractive women there is a great need to have access to them. However the need is cold rather than connected. Men are conditioned to rush and control and have little conscious warmth towards the person inside the body.

This is part of a cycle that also creates cold women. Women who have been born with a beautiful aesthetic gift but one they feel they have to protect and be wary about re the intentions of others. There is no definitive right or wrong with this condition. However there is an opportunity for both men and women to change the condition. We need to bring warmth and respect to this amazing aesthetic. To present and promote the gift aspect of beautiful looks. To encourage women with these looks to be humbled with gratitude for what they have been born with. To generate a warmth and grace rather than a victim preciousness mentality.

Also as an interesting side note the model in this shot has requested that I not use her name with the photo. I believe that this is a great example of how pressuring or intimidating society can be. The model is very proud of her nude shots yet is concerned how others may judge her for doing such shots. Wouldn’t it be so much more empowering if we lived in a society where we could follow our passions and not be made to feel guilty for our decision.

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