A beautiful new photo series is capturing the attention of media because of its juxtaposition of beauty with confrontational message.
The University of Wyoming Union’s ‘Real Women, Real Bodies’ organization was founded by Sydney Stein, a current UW undergraduate in March 2014. She told the Huffington Post that the idea was to encourage women everywhere in the name of positive body image, something we don’t necessarily get from mainstream media and fashion.
“Real does not imply that some bodies are fake. To us, ‘real’ is a word of empowerment. Our intent is to encourage everyone to be confident in their bodies,” she said.
They decided to create a silhouette photo series of 30 women, 11 of which were brave enough to be nude and bare all. The idea was to portray what real women look like, without necessarily exposing faces.
“In many magazines photos of female bodies are altered, our brave volunteers shed it all to show that any real body type is absolutely beautiful. We as an organization work to promote positive self-image in women, reminding them that nothing needs to be nipped or tucked to feel or look beautiful.”
“There is no Photoshop on these women besides shading and contrasting to hide the identities of the models. In many magazines photos of female bodies are altered—our brave volunteers shed it all to show that any real body type is absolutely beautiful! We as an organization work to promote positive self-image in women, reminding them that nothing needs to be nipped or tucked to feel or look beautiful.” states their Facebook page.
The organization’s mission is “to confront the modern perception of beauty” and to help women feel confident in their bodies. Why on earth we still have to have the conversation about how to feel confident in our own bodies in this day and age is really sad. But thankfully there are women like Sydney and organizations like ‘Real Women Real Bodies’ who are willing to go the extra mile to make a difference in the lives of everyday women.
They believe their mission will be achieved by reinforcing the notion that all bodies must conform to the unrealistic concept of beauty that prevails in today’s world.
“Real does not imply that some bodies are fake. To us, “real” is a word of empowerment. We also intend to encourage all people through our messages although thought they tend to be geared toward women,” states the Facebook page.
While this series was specifically geared toward women, they plan to do one with men, as well as include disabled bodies in the future to show that body image issues affect us all.
If you happen to live close to the University of Wyoming or attend the college, you can see the silhouette photos of the women on display at Gallery 234. Otherwise, here is a selection from the shoot below: