When my Wild Women friends get together, I’m usually the firekeeper, and I take that job seriously, adding logs to the fire every time the flames burn down to coals. At last weekend’s Stone Soup party, I kept the fire burning. Soon the room, filled with women talking and eating, was toasty warm.
I don’t know if it was the warmth from the fire or the intimacy of the conversation or the fact that probably half the women in the room are somewhere around menopause, but it wasn’t long before women were taking off their clothes.
Dark-haired Woman was the first to strip off her sweater. “I’m hot,” she announced, by way of explanation.
“Yeah, baby, you’re hot,” Long Beautiful Hair said.
Dark-haired Woman laughed. “Of course, it might just be a hot flash.”
“Hot flashes are way sexy,” someone else called out. “All those waves of warm erotic energy pulsing through your body—”
“You taking off your clothes?” asked Quilt Artist in a practical voice. She looked over from the kitchen area, where she’d just ladled soup into a bowl. “The light’s just right for a naked photo.”
I hadn’t intended to take any naked photos at the potluck. Honestly. Contrary to what some of my blog readers think, I don’t spend most of my time at social events trying to get folks naked. But the situation was perfect: a beautiful woman taking off her clothes, diffuse winter light shining from the window, and a roomful of women who are so used to my camera that the flow of conversation didn’t even pause as Dark Hair obliging took off the rest of her clothes.
“No group naked shot?” asked Denim Woman teasingly. “We aren’t going to recreate the famous white butt shot?”
“No group shots,” I said firmly. “I think the individual photos are more empowering.” I meant that, actually. The group shots are fun and often silly, but there's something special about the individual photos. Often when I show a woman a naked photo of herself, the first thing she says is, “Wow. I didn’t realize I looked that good.”
So often women don’t know how beautiful they are. The point of these photos is to let them see it for themselves.
If you don't know the history of the naked photo tradition, you can check it out here. Or go look at the gallery of photos.