Month: January 2014

Dutch auto-club votes Valalta the best naturist camp in Europe – Business News – Croatian Times Online News – English Newspaper

Valalta, near the western Croatian town of Rovinj, has been voted the best naturist camp in Europe by Dutch Auto-Club.

At the same time Valalta got quality marks Best Camping from German auto-club  ADAC and the Dutch ANWB.

The recognition is important as German and Dutch campers represent over 40 percent of foreign guests in Croatian camps.
Valalta_Camp

Dutch auto-club votes Valalta the best naturist camp in Europe – Business News – Croatian Times Online News – English Newspaper

Hair and Nudity on Stage: “Just Like the Hippies Did” | Dressing Constitutionally

January 20, 2014

HairHair, “The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical,” came to the stage recently at theHoogland Center for the Arts in Springfield, Illinois. As reported, the musical was presented complete with a “controversial nude scene.” Director Jen Wallner reportedly included the scene because it shows vulnerability: “They’re showing themselves for everything they have, just like the hippies did.” 

While this particular production does not seem to have garnered the attention of concerned citizens, as did a recent production of Love! Valour! Compassion! in Grand Rapids, Michigan, the musical has had its share of controversy, resulting in the 1975 Supreme Court decision inSoutheastern Promotions, Ltd. v. ConradThere, municipal authorities in Tennessee, seeking to safeguard the “best interests of the community,” denied an application to produceHair. As discussed in Dressing Constitutionally, while the promoters of Hair won their case, the Court avoided deciding on the constitutionality of applying nudity and obscenity laws to the musical. Several months after Southeastern Productions, the Court in Erznoznik v. City of Jacksonville, applied First Amendment protections to expressive nudity against a local ordinance prohibiting the display of nudity in films shown at drive-in theaters. 

Dressing Constitutionally explains the Court’s separation of nudity from obscenity in cases such as Miller v. California and Erznoznik, and identifies the areas where continued government regulation of nudity in artistic productions is possible: in otherwise regulated mediums, like television; when regulation occurs in a government funding scheme, as seen inthe Love! Valour! Compassion! situation; and when the regulation targets the “secondary effects” of the nudity.

[image via]

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Hair and Nudity on Stage: “Just Like the Hippies Did” | Dressing Constitutionally

STAR Magazine: Hottest Celeb website :: Breaking News :: Russell Brand backs newspaper ban on topless women

Posted: Wednesday 22 January 2014

Funnyman RUSSELL BRAND has thrown his support behind a campaign to ban pictures of topless women from newspapers.

STAR Magazine: Hottest Celeb website :: Breaking News :: Russell Brand backs newspaper ban on topless women http://www.star-magazine.co.uk/breakingnews/view/55340/Russell-Brand-backs-newspaper-ban-on-topless-women/

"Brand has revealed he was introduced to the campaign by his writer/activist girlfriend Jemima Khan and posted a picture of himself holding a T-shirt emblazoned with the group’s slogan on his Twitter.com page, adding, "Finally, through the love of a good woman, teenage, sexist me was slain. No more Page 3… Thank Jemima Khan for the wake up call."
The Forgetting Sarah Marshall star is supporting the No More Page 3 drive, named after the infamous third page feature in The Sun which has included snaps of semi-naked models since 1970.

Brand has revealed he was introduced to the campaign by his writer/activist girlfriend Jemima Khan and posted a picture of himself holding a T-shirt emblazoned with the group’s slogan on his Twitter.com page, adding, “Finally, through the love of a good woman, teenage, sexist me was slain. No more Page 3… Thank Jemima Khan for the wake up call.”

The funnyman’s backing has drawn mixed reactions from some of the initiative’s supporters, with many criticising the star over his womanising past, but campaigner Lucy-Anne Holmes hopes Brand can help raise awareness.

In a blog for the Huffington Post, she writes, “I’m not saying here I agree with all Russell Brand does or says, he’s definitely done things that I wouldn’t be able to align myself with at all… (But) he’s quite brilliantly placed to communicate the dangers of a media, which offers one gender up as bodies to be consumed and judged by the other, in a witty and accessible way that could reach millions.

“Some people have said he can’t change and have not welcomed him speaking out, I can understand this, but I can’t join them. Surely what we’re doing here is raising awareness in the hope that people will change.”

STAR Magazine: Hottest Celeb website :: Breaking News :: Russell Brand backs newspaper ban on topless women

How Getting Naked in Front of Strangers Made Me Feel Good About My Body

Until one is faced with a row of breasts as an army of butts stares back, it’s easy to imagine everyone else is like Barbie and Ken — smooth, proportional, free of hair.

image
 

The following story first appeared on  Thought Catalog. 

It was a Saturday night when I found myself riverside at a bright and raging bonfire.

On a folding table, bottles of liquor stood arranged like bowling pins, their dubious quality advertised by names beginning with “grand-dad” or “uncle” and ending in “pride” or “gentleman.”

Watching trees become flame and beer become courage, I wiggled my toes in the sand and took inventory of the people sliding past me. Friends, acquaintances. A 30-something bearded stranger with a fanny pack. This was a party straight out of a Van Wilder movie.

People-watching like a kid in a candy store, I perched myself dockside as my phone buzzed inside my bag. I’d been rifling through the abyss when I noticed several breasts and penises had entered what an elementary school teacher might call “my personal space bubble.” The glow of the fire created a timeless and primal atmosphere — one in which the genitalia could have easily belonged to cavemen, and the chests to subjects of National Geographic photo subjects.

A mixture of legs and arms now joined them as my focus shifted to count buttcheeks and thighs. Liquid courage and group-think had mixed perfectly, resulting in a spicy soup of crossed boundaries. As if spurred by a tribal ritual, bizarre magic was happening in the best of ways.

The naked, I realized, now outnumbered their clothed counterparts. They mingled by the water and passed logs to revive the blaze, encountering and engaging those who’d yet to strip.

“Take off your clothes!” yelled the bearded stranger, as I feigned deafness and a sudden interest in the rocks at my feet.

“Nah, that’s okay” I thought to myself, “not me. My boobs are different sizes and everyone would be grossed out.”

Every body-related worry rushed through my head at top speed as I thumbed the button of my shorts and fingered my shirt. Butt wiggle, thigh scar. The boob situation.

I’m a girl. More importantly, I’m human. What’s clear to me in retrospect?  I’ve wasted enough of my 22 years hosting various levels of self-loathing — pinching and staring and counting. I’ve lost and gained, changed and stayed the same, feeling infinite ways about what I see in the mirror.

“Maybe he’d like me if I looked like her,” has resounded in my mind as ruthless comparison infected me by way of magazines and yogurt commercials. Self control. Size 4. Size 6. No matter how small, the critiques have resonated more loudly than the grandest of compliments.

Flaws are inherent, inescapable and – most importantly – subjective. In an environment of pants and shirts, nude bodies are like oxygen: imperceivable yet inescapable, everywhere and nowhere all at once.

Layers of clothes and of self-doubt separate us from exposure. Until one is faced with a row of breasts as an army of butts stares back, it’s easy to imagine everyone else is like Barbie and Ken — smooth, proportional, free of hair. It’s easy to believe the fear is yours alone.

Bearing my naked self is an act I usually reserve only for those I trust or my shower walls. But publicly stripping down, an idea that was first absurd, felt less and less so with each passing minute and each dropping pair of underwear.

And suddenly, in a sea of private parts that had become anything but, I realized I just didn’t care. Seeing real nudity, not airbrushed in magazines or plastered on billboards, reminds one of a simple fact: human bodies are inherently sort of silly looking. We have parts that bounce when we want them to stay put and other parts we wish were larger or smaller or smoother. We waste time thinking about what we can’t change.

So off came the shirt. Off came the shorts. And a funny thing happened: nothing. Nobody laughed and nobody stared. That quick and painless moment was a liberating page in the body-pride struggle I’ve been writing since my first training bra. I’m not perfect, but with time comes the true realization of universal imperfection.

When I was maybe 12 years old, my dad sat me down and looked me dead in the eyes. “Did you know that what you see in the mirror is ten times more critical than what what the rest of us see?” he asked.  I shook my head, already mired in an awkward preteen body and convinced of my lack of appeal. “Well, it’s true.”

I could worry or I could embrace, and after ten more years of fighting with the body I was born in, I stood. I stood there near a marsh with all my honesty and everyone else’s to keep it company, and then I jumped into the water screaming.

Call it random debauchery — because, in part, it was — but it was also much more. Rarely do I wake from a night of questionable antics and thank myself for what I’ve done. But in the morning I watched the sun rise high over the glowing embers and optimistically replaced my garb as a startled hippie scampered from the underbrush.

In a society of Dexatrim ads and a self-tanned ideal, confidence is a sweet and satisfying catch. In my daily life I’ll have less beer and sport more clothes, but the naked attitude? I hope to bare it for good.

How Getting Naked in Front of Strangers Made Me Feel Good About My Body

France: Letting It All Hang Out in Cap D’Agde’s Nudist Resort | Terra Incognita | DW.DE | 08.01.2008

In Cap D’Agde in southwestern France, people can take a holiday with a difference where it’s not so much what you wear that’s important, but what you don’t wear. The region is home to the world’s largest naturist resort.

The Village Naturiste in Cap D’Agde is the world’s largest nudist resort

Imagine a place where you could not only relax on the beach or swim naked, but could also shop naked, go to the bank naked and even eat out naked. In fact, imagine a place where you could do pretty much anything in the nude.

Well, it exists in Cap D’Agde in the Languedoc region of southwestern France, about an hour’s drive from Montpellier. Up to 40,000 people come to the world’s largest naturist resort every year.

“It’s an easy way of life,” says Alexander, a representative based in Cap D’Agde from one of Germany’s largest naturist travel agencies Naturism.de. He says there’s a good reason why so many people want to holiday naked.

“You don’t have to put any clothes on,” Alexander says. “When I wake up in the morning, I can go to the beach naked, have a swim and then take my shower. It’s great.”

There’s something for everyone

The resort originally became popular in the 1960s and 70s. Cap D’Agde bills itself as a naturist city, when in fact it is more of a large naked village with shops, restaurants and much more, as well as two kilometers of sandy beach.

Visitors come from all over the world, such as Bill from New Zealand. For him, one of the main reasons for traveling to Cap D’Agde is the lack of a naturist lifestyle at home, as well as cold winters.

“Well it’s an escape really,” Bill says. “I can come here and not only am I getting the warmth, but also the cultural difference and the whole way of life.”

Tourists can stroll the boardwalk in Cap D’Agde in the buff

All types of naturists come here on holiday — from young families and retired couples to gay men and lesbians. But a number of people live permanently all year round in the resort, like Mick and his wife Pat from England. He says one reason they moved here is because life here is much easier than back home.

“It’s the complete freedom thing here,” Mick says. “It’s the fact that you can go shopping in the nude or you can wander into the post office. You can do everything. You could spend a complete fortnight here and not get dressed at all.”

Staff have to keep their clothes on

Among the holiday makers and residents are also the staff who work here. Patrick has run a café in Cap D’Agde for over a decade. He says he has no problem having naked customers and that the atmosphere is great.

“You work with the sun and with people on holidays, and it gives you lots of pleasure, at least to me,” Patrick says.

But Patrick and his staff can’t share their customers’ joy in eating in the buff, due to health regulations.

“Also for safety reasons, because if you grill or deep-fry fries, you can have hot oil spraying out, so you have to wear clothes,” Patrick says.

The swingers come out at night

Watch out for the sun!

Despite the free lifestyle in Cap D’Agde, there are a few rules that naturists abide by. Peter, a representative from Britain’s largest naturist travel agency Peng Travel, says photographing is a very delicate situation, for example.

“Of course, you have to be very wary of the sun too and what it does to your body,” Peter says. “You can come here and get a beautiful tan in a couple of days or you can come here and get absolutely burnt and ruin the rest of your holiday.”

At nighttime, as the beaches empty of sun worshippers and families go to sleep, the town becomes a haven for hedonism with everything from gay bars to swingers clubs. In fact, the town has a controversial reputation for attracting swinging couples. But as Mick says, if anything it adds color to the resort.

“Naturism is very nice, walking around naked and this sort of thing,” Mick says. “But the sex side of it, where you’ve got the swingers and all the fetish wear in the evening — it adds a bit of excitement to it. I think that’s the fun side of Cap D’Agde, which you don’t get in other naturist resorts.”

According to Bill, Cap D’Agde as a holiday destination is the sort of place people either love or hate.

“I just say to people: come and try it,” Bill says. “If you don’t like it, you don’t have to come back. But if you fall in love with it like I have, well, you’ll just keep coming back time and time again.”

France: Letting It All Hang Out in Cap D’Agde’s Nudist Resort | Terra Incognita | DW.DE | 08.01.2008

Nude Dancers Turn Mother Nature Into The Perfect Stage (NSFW)

Posted: 12/26/13 EST  |  Updated: 12/26/13 EST

Photographer Bertil Nilsson has created a breathtaking series featuring nude dancers alone in sweeping, natural landscapes. Twirling, pirouetting and balancing atop fallen trees and mountain peeks, the performers stand out in the stark contrasts of man and Mother Nature.

nilsson

Nilsson’s subjects appear to be levitating in some images, striking unbelievably contorted poses in others, all while drenched in powdered colors of red and white. The resulting images seem to capture an alien world, filled with figures and landscapes not of this earth.

“In my work, which takes inspiration from movement and the human form, I collaborate extensively with dancers and circus artists,” Nilsson writes on his website. “Photography is my primary medium of expression, but I also use moving image.”

pierre

This series, called “Naturally,” is on view now at Galerie Wilms through January 12, 2014. Scroll through a preview of the works and let us know your thoughts on the project in the comments.

dennis

david

geoffrey

miguel

mj

mj

beren

eike

eike

beren

Nude Dancers Turn Mother Nature Into The Perfect Stage (NSFW)

Body Positive Photo Galleries | Nudity | Censorship | Body Image

astore.amazon.com

Body Positive Galleries and Censorship

 | January 22, 2014 0 Comments

Why Body Positive Photo Galleries Need To Go All The Way

body positive gallery naked bodies censorship body shame

Many people these days seem to be realizing that society has some seriously unrealistic beauty standards, which are perpetuated (for the most part) by the media.  We’re seeing the same type of airbrushed, flawless, slim bodies everywhere, and it seems to be creating body image issues for people everywhere.  But some activists are attempting to counteract this negative body-image issue by creating body-positive photo galleries.  There are now websites (and books of course) where you can see photo galleries showcasing all types of bodies.  Some focus on larger bodies, some on mothers’ bodies, some on disabled bodies.  They show an alternative definition of beauty—the idea that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.  The photos are supposed to help others with poor body image and offer a change in their visual diet with more body diversity.

However, there is one problem I’ve noticed with some of these galleries – they cover up the naked bodies.  Either the people are wearing bras and underwear or positioned a certain way or the models actually cover specific parts with their arms or hands.

So, let’s examine this phenomenon.  Someone creates a series of images of all different bodies with the purpose of eradicating body shame and negative body image. As if to say that all bodies are good, beautiful, perfect, blah blah blah.  BUT if that’s the case then why are certain body parts censored… Are those parts bad?  Should we still feel ashamed of those body parts?  I’m sure you can guess which parts I speak of: women’s nipples, breasts, genitals and butts.

This begs the question – WHY?  Why do they do this?  I set out to try and understand the reasons behind the censorship issues!  I reached out to two women who had created such galleries so I could try to understand their reasoning.

One gallery featured “average” bodies and the other focused on moms who had given birth.  These are the replies I got.

Mom body image gallery:
1.“We have chosen not to do any full adult nudes for this project because we wanted it to be transparent but accessible to the mainstream.”

“Average” bodies gallery:
2.“No shame here! It was so it could spread on Facebook PG-13 style!”

Not good answers, I know.  Let’s skip over the “PG-13” part for now and talk about Facebook.  I know how we all want to share everything on Facebook, but seriously, people are letting Facebook set their personal boundaries and artistic work?  Purposely covering up bodies on their own website because of Facebook’s ridiculous nudity rules??  This makes me VERY SAD.  Appeasing the Facebook censors should not be the justification for such self-censorship!

That said… I do get it.  People want their projects to be seen by the greatest number of eyeballs, and as we know, not everyone is okay with nudity.  Certainly not Facebook and other social networks and certainly NOT the mainstream media (if they happen to discuss your project).  But here’s the thing that irks me most.  Using the media’s standards as a baseline for a body-image project means promoting the very thing they are presumably trying to contest: body shame, disgust and fear of human bodies.  We have these body image issues to begin with because of the way the media operates and because of rampant censorship of non-sexual nudity.

So, in my opinion, it just doesn’t make any sense to censor bodies in this context.  It’s like making an educational video about how breastfeeding is normal and natural, but blurring out the nipples.  Censored bodies sends the message that the body is shameful, inappropriate, wrong, gross, immoral and must be hidden from the light of day at all times.

Of course there is an easy way to see genitals and taboo parts: pornography.  Here’s an example of how we have it backwards.  Society regularly accepts nudity in a sexual context but when it comes to female empowerment, it gets censored.  Robin Thicke and Justin Timberlake featured uncensored topless women in their music videos last year.  Yet, in the context of news, women’s health or body image, women’s breasts are regularly censored.  As a result, people get to see the model bodies, but not the ones that resemble their own.

Online, one can find all the nude images they want.  Problem is, they can also find all the porn they want.  Porn and nudity are not mutually exclusive.  I can tell you from experience that if you just search online for “naked people,” or any naked-related imagery, you’re going to find porn – and a lot of it!  Soft-core and hardcore porn that are filled with thin, tan buxom women with perfect skin, posed for the male gaze.  Say you want to find photos of average breasts, vulvas, penises … You get even more porn, fake boobs, vulvas that have been stripped of hair and given a photoshopped labiaplasty look.

Now let’s talk about kids.  It must be stated (over and over again until society finally gets it) that nonsexual nudity does not harm children.  The simplest way to defend this point is that kids have naked bodies too.  There are evenstudies that say it’s beneficial for kids to grow up in a naturist environment.  Now with the Internet, it’s not as simple as labeling a movie PG-13 to protect kids.  The Internet makes everything available.  So today kids as young as 11 years old, or even younger, are seeing porn online.  Most teenagers have seen online porn regardless of whether they intended to find it or not.  So kids are already seeing nudity.  It’s just the sexual, objectifying, unrealistic kind of nudity that is most widely available.  

If people want to see average naked bodies, they really have to know where to look.  We need more healthy, realistic nudity out there for people to see.  In my opinion, both kids and adults alike would benefit from it.  

Here is a video that demonstrates my point.  Teenagers, both boys and girls, were shown various photos of breasts on a UK sex education program.  They were asked to choose which breasts they think are most appealing.  Both groups immediately pick out the fake pair.  On the show’s website, they state, “In The Sex Education Show’s national survey of teenagers, 44% of the girls said they were unhappy with their breasts and nearly 1 in 5 say they would already consider having a boob job.

Some might say I’m being overly critical.  Doesn’t every little bit of body-positive imagery make a difference?  Does it still benefit people to see other people’s bodies even if they are a little covered up?  Arguably, yes.

In a photo of a woman in her bra and underwear, people still see her belly fat, stretch marks, wrinkles, cellulite, body shape, and so on.  That said, covered up bodies are still sending the wrong message here – that the human body is something that people should still be ashamed of.

In this day and age, I feel, we need raise the bar and not capitulate to mainstream media standards.  We need to contest the shame that’s been forced upon us for god knows how long.

I simply don’t see any good reason to censor the human body and plenty of reasons why we should not.  

If you’re interested, here are some (uncensored) body positive galleries / books that I like: 

The Nu Project

Bodies and Souls: The Century Project by Frank Cordelle

Mormon Women Bare

Fully Disclothed

The Large Labia Project – blog and gallery

007 Breasts 

What do you think, readers?  And if you have any favorite body-positive uncensored projects / websites feel free to share in the comments! 

Young Naturists & Nudists America

Body Positive Photo Galleries | Nudity | Censorship | Body Image

Swingers and nudists: different scenes

I’ve been pretty busy the past week or so, which is why I haven’t been doing a lot of blogging here. Not that I am being silent: I’ve been blogging on the Gazette site quite a bit about Quebec issues and other subjects, including a horrible crime that was committed against a gay person in Brazil. I didn’t share that story here because I didn’t want to spoil your day: the imagery was gruesome. But for those who are interested in Quebec issues and some of the other topics I cover on the Gazette blog, feel free to click in there.

Meanwhile, the subject of “swingers” was raised here recently. Naturists feel the need to distance themselves from the subject, because we don’t want anyone to think that being a nudist and being a swinger are synonymous. Still, though, I imagine some of my readers are “swingers.”

In truth, I have never taken part in that scene, but I do believe in “To each their own.” Or, “whatever floats your boat.”

In the interests of being inclusive, which this blog strives to be, I open a discussion here on “swingers” groups. If you partake, please feel free to share your thoughts on the scene, the philosophy, etc. And if you are a swinger, are you a naturist/nudist, too? In fact, I do know of some nudists who are also swingers, but they do not mix the two in social nudism settings.

For discussion.

Jillian

P.S. It’s freakin’ cold again in my neck of the woods. The “polar vortex” has returned!

Swingers and nudists: different scenes