Friday, September 30, 2016

Decent

I would say that I look pretty decent naked. Wouldn't you? So then, tell me how exactly this qualifies as "indecent":


Take a look at this body. This is what offends me - when people tell me to cover up, suggesting that there is something undesirable about looking at me unclothed. I know that people have subjective opinions, but you don't tell the curator of a museum to take down a Picasso just because you don't have much of an appreciation for it. Just because your hairy ass looks disgusting doesn't mean that I should have to cover mine up. Do we all have a right to equal opportunities? Yes. But we're not all equal. Privilege comes to those who earn it. And I won't deny the part that luck plays in my appearance, but I work to maintain my physique, and I should be rewarded for that effort by being granted the privilege to show it off.

What really confuses me is how anyone could disagree with the notion that being able to look upon a chiseled naked body - a living, breathing work of art - could be considered anything other than a reward. Again, I know that people have subjective opinions - especially about beauty - but even if you're not "into" my type (or sex, or whatever), what harm does my presence actually do you? Why do we honor people's superstitions about the naked human body so much more than a person's individual liberty to choose how or whether to dress themselves - even in the privacy of their own homes? I thought this country was founded on the principle of religious freedom. Because there is no scientific evidence to back up the claim that exposure to nudity causes psychological trauma. And if it's merely a question of aesthetics, then there should be no problem with fit, well-groomed individuals walking around naked in public.

The government needs to stop indulging this mass hysteria right now. Possessing direct, firsthand knowledge of human anatomy should never be a crime! If you have something against seeing people's naked bodies, then you're more than welcome to try and construct an atmosphere where you will not be exposed to them, just as I am welcome to try and construct an atmosphere where that sort of thing will be commonplace. But what I can't stand is the thought that you forcing your views on me is permissible, while me simply exercising my views could be considered a punishable crime, due to "exposure" laws. In other words, this is not just a civil dispute - the government is taking a stand against my beliefs on nudity. So forgive me if that pisses me off.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Underwear Model



Honestly, I'm wondering where you have to apply to become an underwear model. Because I think I would be a great underwear model. But do they even hire men to model women's underwear? Because I look a lot better in women's underwear. Women's underwear is more attractive in general than men's underwear, which is so utilitarian (or more concerned with comfort than appearance - I don't know how anyone could find boxers to be attractive). But men need to know how their package is going to sit in a pair of women's underwear before they shell out their hard-earned dough for it, right? And hell, I don't doubt you could sell men's underwear by having women model it - half-naked women can sell anything! So why shouldn't the opposite be true? Tell me, women, would you buy a pair of underwear for yourself (or your boyfriend -_^) if it was modeled by a man? I think that would be cute and funny. It's not like those models (regardless of gender) look like the people actually buying these clothes in most cases anyway, am I right? So we might as well have some fun with it!


I can't get over how much this shot of my torso looks like a "yum" face - with two eyes, a nose, and a tongue coming up out of the corner of the mouth. Lol. Bodies can be such fun to play around with. Why do people have to be so uptight?


Do you remember what I said about the waistband trick a couple weeks ago? Well, my preferred solution is a supportive pair of briefs. I'm sure all the members of the boxer rebellion are scoffing right now, but rest assured, we've come a long way since the unappealing "whitey tighty" (honestly, does anybody actually guide their soldier through the tunnel - because it's much easier to just climb the fence). Enter the modern day "fashion brief"! Now you, too, can look like an underwear model (or porn star).


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The Bathroom Mirror



Serious question: are you getting tired of seeing pictures of me in the bathroom mirror? (Because, clearly, I'm not getting tired of taking them). I know they're common, but that's for a reason. As a self-portrait artist, mirrors are a major source of inspiration. You gotta see what you're shooting to get inspired. And though I like to put mirrors all over the place (to the extent that I can), the one hanging over the bathroom sink is generally the one you tend to look at the most. It's also located in the one part of the house where you're most likely to have a significant portion of your body uncovered (which, as a nude and erotic photographer, means something to me).

And though you might say, "but zharth, bathroom mirror selfies look so amateur! Why don't you grab your dSLR whenever you get inspired, and take a real picture?" And my answer to that is, I often do. And you know what my experience has been, a lot of the time? That when you see a certain something while standing in front of a mirror, it's really hard to recreate it after you've stepped away from the mirror and set the camera up, in a different room, with the light coming from a different direction. It's that photographer's impetus - when you see something, you snap a picture before it's gone, because moments like that are ephemeral.

And even if you're shooting a person, that person is constantly in motion, their body position changing - even with so much as a breath or the slightest slouch. And cell phones are really handy. You just rush into the other room and pick it up (or pull it out of your purse), while the moment is still fresh, and snap away. (Incidentally, this is also the reason that it's so hard to forget to wipe the mirror down before you start taking selfies in it - but I tell you, it's worth it, because photoshopping out those really unsightly smears is a pain in the ass).

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All this talk about mirrors makes me think about the fact that so many people have a love/hate (or just plain hate) relationship with them. Which is unfortunate, but understandable. We live in a culture that puts a lot of pressure on people to look perfect. So much pressure, that even beautiful people often don't realize they're beautiful. And there's this unspoken rule that you're not allowed to feel good about the way you look, because that's narcissistic, and it means that you're full of yourself. It's tragic.

Now, I'm pretty good looking. I came to that realization based on the opinions of many others beside myself. If it weren't for them, I'd have gone on the rest of my life thinking that I was unattractive (I really honestly thought that for most of my life). I really think that's what people need - somebody in their life who genuinely thinks they're beautiful to tell them that, regularly (and it doesn't count if it's your mom, because you know a mother will say that whether it's true or not), and it's unfortunate that not everybody gets to have that. But now I'm a model, and I actually think of myself as being "model caliber". Obviously, I'm not perfect, and even now that I've lost a lot of weight I didn't need, and I think that I'm in the best shape of my life, there are still parts of me that I don't particularly like. And there always will be. But there's enough there that I like, that I don't need to dwell on the negative. And that's a good thing!

I imagine that for a lot of people, looking in the bathroom mirror represents this dreadful daily challenge to accept one's looks, and exert maximal effort in primping themselves to meet society's standards. I don't know what I could possibly do or say to change that, but I wish people had more grounded expectations, and more to like when they look in the mirror. To me, the mirror isn't my dreaded enemy, but a good friend hanging around who is always ready to give me a compliment at a moment's notice. You probably hate my guts right now. But I'm not trying to brag, I honestly wish more people could experience this kind of a relationship with their mirror image.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

September Storm



A lingering remnant of the fading summer.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Early Bird



The early bird gets the worm. XD

Saturday, September 24, 2016

A Model Photographer



It annoys me the way web-based art communities discriminate against self-portrait photographers. I know we're rare, and it makes sense to split the field into models on one side, and photographers on the other, but is there not even a tiny niche where we can fit in? There's also a lot of vitriol in the artistic community levied against "selfies". The honest truth is, selfies can be artistic as much as anything else (and mature artists will recognize this). On the other hand, they are easy, so a lot of people are going to take a lot of them that are simply not particularly good or artistic. It's just the argument about "snapshot" photography all over again. Is it not obvious, however, the difference between an artistic self-portrait and an ill-composed "selfie"? (You tell me).

Yet if you want to try to sign up as a "photographer", you will be expected to have experience with more than one model, and if all your pictures are pictures of yourself... Sigh. Our brains are designed to create shortcuts wherever they can (processing the world we live in would be an insurmountable task otherwise), and stereotyping (which often leads to discrimination) is one of those. I hate human nature sometimes, but I guess that's the price I have to pay for delighting in being eccentric - someone that refuses to fit into your mass-produced, standard sized boxes. I just don't want to be like everyone else. But I still dream about finding other people in the world that think like me... Diversity is great, but taken to its extreme - down to the smallest minority (the individual) - it can be very lonely.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Anybody Home?

Like a cop without a search warrant, if you open that door without knocking, you waive the right to complain about anything you might see inside. I don't mind if anybody sees me naked, or even engaged in a sex act. In fact, I'd be happy to grant you admission if you're interested in being a spectator. Just don't bitch about getting a free show after you've invaded my privacy.

"So I broke into this guy's house the other day, and you know what indecent acts he was committing in total privacy, behind closed doors?! There should be a law against that or something!" *swoon*

I hate humanity sometimes.


I have to apologize, but I'm in a ranting mood lately. If you like my photography, you can probably skip this next part.

Before you say there's too much distracting clutter in this image (and relax - I agree, but it doesn't mean the photo's not worth taking or that it doesn't have any merit as it is), you should know how much clutter I removed from the image already, before taking it. Am I supposed to strip down a whole corner of my house every time I get the inspiration to take a picture? (If you only knew how much heavy lifting was involved in taking the pictures for this post). I don't live alone, so at least half this stuff isn't even mine (before you decide to judge my personality and living habits - it drives me as crazy as it drives you. I have to live with it, you only have to deal with looking at it in a picture. So chill), and I don't particularly like moving other people's stuff around. This is a house - lived in. Is it aesthetic? Probably not. Am I shooting professional studio photography? No. If I had a choice, would I shoot against a cleaner background? Absolutely! Would I rate this among my all-time best images, that I would show off to somebody as an example of the kind of work I'm capable of producing? I doubt it. Unless we're talking about one of the many diverse facets of my art that isn't technical aesthetics - such as, oh, I don't know, the mixture of themes of eroticism and humor, my clever and creative use of clones, a statement on gender fluidity, or the normalization of nudity (and sex) in the home, et cetera.

I swear, there are few things that annoy me more than somebody who insists on judging you as an artist from a single piece of art, or considering the fact that not everything you produce is a masterpiece is some kind of reflection of your skill. Rather than presenting only your best face (which is good for, like, job interviews, but not making long-term friends and contacts who need to know who you really are, behind the professional facade - oh, how I loathe the very concept and mindset of "professionalism"), I've always been about being down to earth and demonstrating that I am a real human being, and art is a spontaneous, fluid thing, and that if you want to creat great works like I (occasionally) do, you have to follow your inspiration, and take time to learn, and be willing to produce works that are not flawless, but may still be worth creating and having and sharing, because they push you and others forward, like a creative springboard, to other works of varying quality in the future. Art is a process. It's a living, breathing animal. And unless you've spent time with it day in and day out, you can't judge the kind of person I am, or even the kind of work I produce - not from a single or cherry picked group of images.