As a Boudoir Photographer, I have countless, intimate discussions with other women about the beauty standards imposed on women. I have long stated that it’s my life long mission to inspire women to reclaim their power and their confidence and to love themselves through radical self-acceptance. While there may be a glimmer of hope when companies like Dove create empowering viral content, a new photo series explores how truly corrosive beauty standards can be to the female body.
While these images may not fall under the category of empowering boudoir photography, they certainly ask us to evaluate our collective cosmetic obsession takes on women. Created by Melbourne-based visual artist Jessica Ledwich, each photo is a surreal document of how the ways women are conditioned to treat themselves often involve physical violence. Whether the series’ heroine is using a car buffer to wax her legs to an unhealthily pink hue or sever fingers for manicuring purpose, Ledwich elevates everyday beauty regimens to a level of sublime grotesquerie.
“While the series employs an element of the absurd, the reality of what women put themselves through is not so far from the truth,” Ledwich says. “Some procedures might just be uncomfortable, but others are downright dangerous–all so we can aspire to look like a model that is digitally manipulated in the first place.”
The rest of her arresting series can be found here.
This themes explored in my project My Body is a Cage are similar and haunting.