Photographers' Blog

Naked exposure

Montalivet, France

By Regis Duvignau

Montalivet: It’s a long beach of fine white sand, pine forest, traditional markets and naturists.

A stone’s throw away from my office, the Helio-Marin Centre’s,”live better, live naked” slogan is one I have known for a long time. So I decided to adopt Adam’s attire and become a true naturist for the duration of this assignment and melt into the crowd of 14,000 holiday makers at the nudist campsite during the busy summer season. The vacation center’s fences open to a quite “natural” landscape, hiding nothing from the eye either of human beauty or nature’s small faults.

I took up my own challenge to live for several days among naturists, shedding my own clothes along with pre-conceived ideas. I discovered the beach in the morning, naked as the day I was born. I encountered Jean Pierre who played a dance tune on his accordion while standing in the sea. Jean Pierre practices on the beach so as not to annoy vacationers in nearby bungalows with his wrong notes.

Nudity here is natural, not vulgar. Businessmen mix with craftsman in a joyful nakedness that no one seems to notice. No one bats an eyelid when I jump into the pool with a Gopro in my hand to make a series of underwater photos of people taking an aqua gym class. Only the life guard, holding my iPad beside the pool in order to see my images remarked on my “courage” to have so quickly adapted to the dress code.

The Helio-Marin Centre allows all generations to take advantage of naturism. The glance of another is no longer about their clothes. Remarks are no longer directed about the job one holds which can no longer be guessed at. How to distinguish the banker from the carpenter? The hair dresser from the minister? Everyone is alike, or almost.

Nude without the nudity

WARNING: SOME IMAGES CONTAIN NUDITY

San Francisco, California

By Beck Diefenbach

Photographing the nude body in America presents many challenges. So when Reuters editor Mike Fiala asked me to shoot the latest chapter in the public nudity ban in San Francisco, I knew I would have a lot of factors to consider.

GALLERY: SAN FRANCISCO’S NO TO NUDE

Different parts of the world react differently to nudity in the news. In America, it is often considered taboo to print a photo of frontal nudity even if it is considered newsworthy.

If you are unaware, San Francisco does not have a city ordinance banning nudity in public. It is just one of those San Francisco-ism everyone else in the country likes to joke about. Until the last year or two, this clothing optional lifestyle never really caused much of a kerfuffle. But recently, store merchants in the city’s Castro district have requested that the city put a stop to bare skin.

The femen phenomenon

By Gleb Garanich

I have been shooting Femen protests for five years and the girls have become a real Ukrainian brand now, like Chernobyl, the Klitschko brothers, footballer Andriy Shevchenko and Chicken Kiev. Colleagues in the office were always jealous when we left to cover the protests and many of my acquaintances from abroad were willing to go and watch them. Before taking pictures of the girls’ regular lives outside the protests, I asked myself: what do I know about them? I only knew their names. The public has two ideas of them, “funny girls” or “damn prostitutes, I wonder who’s paying them”. I personally do not care if their actions are moral or immoral, wrong or right. They do not kill or steal or promise to make voters’ lives better. Shooting their protests is much more interesting than, say, covering a briefing by the prime minister. These girls at least appear honest. Who pays for that is a question for the Financial Times, not me.


REUTERS/Denis Sinyakov

I chose the three most prominent Femen activists, Oleksandra Shevchenko, Inna Shevchenko and Oksana Shachko, and decided to spend a few hours with each one on a regular day. Two problems I faced were a queue of foreign reporters waiting to meet them and the flu, which brought the girls down. But once they recovered, I paid them a visit.

I spent the morning with Inna Shevchenko.

Inna, 21, was born in the city of Kherson and studies journalism in Kiev. She had worked for the press office of the Kiev mayor’s office, but was sacked for taking part in Femen protests. Inna likes to hike in the mountains and read Chekhov. She rents a room in a downtown Kiev apartment.

Naturism: These images contain nudity

By Mark Blinch

When you’re a photographer, every day brings the unexpected.

(Video best viewed in full screen mode)

Case in point: My assignment at the Bare Oaks Family Naturist Park.

Imagine a campground where people perform everyday tasks but without a stitch of clothing on.

Mowing the lawn, coffee with friends, dinnertime with family members, even board meetings with colleagues — at this camp, there were no exceptions to the no clothes rule.

But Bare Oaks, located about an hour north from Canada’s largest metropolis Toronto, is about more than just nudity. It’s about community and trust, self-respect and self confidence, naturalism and naturism.

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