I spent two hours with about 70 naked men and women last night at my naturists’ group’s swim event, and I can honestly say I didn’t notice the below-the-invisible-belt “private parts” of a single person there. No, they’re not really private in a setting like that, but these social nudism events are much like social clothed events in that regard. One keeps their eyes above the shoulders most, if not all of the time.
Our group has a no-camera policy, as most naturism groups probably do: no one is allowed to take pictures at our events. But some naturists I have met have taken photos of some of their personal nudism activities, and I’m not always comfortable with looking at some of those photos.
At a recent dinner where I was a guest, the gentleman of the house — stark naked — was proudly showing some of his naturism photos. I felt a bit uneasy seeing them, because I was being forced to see the whole images of his body as the focal point, and I couldn’t help but notice that he is superbly endowed — in those photos. Yet, there he was sitting with us and I was only seeing his head and shoulders in real time — I wasn’t looking below his waist.
I felt betrayed by the photos, though I wasn’t upset. I just felt they were making me look where I wouldn’t naturally look — and didn’t really want to see.
On the other hand, I have seen other naturism photos that focus more on settings (ie. naturism resorts, beaches etc.) and scenery, and I appreciate those. The human body is not the focal point, but blends in with the natural surroundings — which is what naturism is all about, yes?
Everyone has their own preference in this matter. I’m with you; I don’t want to be forced to see the whole everything. It’s great if someone is in a beautiful or fascinating environment, people can fit there, become part of it.
I especially hate it when people take a picture of themselves (or have it taken) in a way that seems to say “Look at my stuff here”.
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If I may gently and respectfully disagree…I live in a naturist resort. Of course it’s not about sexuality…period. And I’ve always believed that every body is beautiful. No one I know ‘ogles’ or is focused on looking at anyone’s genitalia. But to not be mindful of or notice how others’ bodies are wouldn’t be human.
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On the issue of photography, at our naturist resort taking photos of others without permission is forbidden obviously and cameras are not allowed in the pool areas. But we have a couple of ‘official’ photographers who photograph our large event weekends (sometimes over 2,000 people) and the photos are then showed on a large screen at our weekend dances, but not posted anywhere online. And it’s very common for those of us who live here or have weekend places here to display nude photographs of them with friends…none are of a sexual nature. It seems to me that to be averse to nude photos of our human bodies plays right into the mindset of a culture that equates nudity with sexuality and supports the body-shaming that most people are raised with.
ALOHA JILLIAN: …. why were the 70 people “odd”???…
lol. I didn’t mean “odd” as in unusual. I meant it as an estimate, as in “about.” I’ll change it to avoid confusion.
First, when you say “superbly endowed”, did mean that the picture showed him with an erection or that he was just larger than the average male? I think that would change the concept of the pictures. Second, and maybe it is just the different way the male mind and the female mind works, how come a lot of women do not like to look south when it comes to anatomy, this includes both male and female anatomy. I am not saying to make it an obsession or something, just my observation that most women would rather the males wear shorts or swim trunks ( and not speedoes which I tend to wear) and a lot of women like to wear a wrap around their waist. Again, is this advertising that is controlling what is good to look at or not good to look at?
Answer to your question: much larger-than-average male, I think. I didn’t ask if he had an erection (or pre-erection) in the photos.
As for looking south, I think we are conditioned not to look. It is also about respecting someone, and not giving them the wrong impression. I mean, at some of the events I attend, there have been guys who checked me out up and down with longing looks — and I was aware of it and a little uncomfortable when I saw them doing it. Imagine if I started fixing my eyes on a guy’s penis at an event — he might get the wrong impression, yes?
I dunno . . . I just threw out this post to generate discussion. I knew it would be a wee bit controversial, and that’s good. We need to talk about such things.
I should preface by saying I’m not a person takes pictures of my travels or vacations. I have a memory to call to mind people places and things and find I don’t need a photographic reminder.
That said, my experience of naturist blogs that include photographs is, if the shot is of a group, it is almost always non-sexual. Blogs created by women who restrict the photography to pictures of themselves are again posed in a non-sexual way. Unfortunately, most blogs created by men who limit the pictures to shots of themselves have a sexual LOOK. To give them the benefit of the doubt, they may not have experience posing, so they stand in positions that bring attention to their naked genitalia. Or the other possibility that comes to mind, is men are competitive by nature and they may feel to pose in a less revealing position would lead to thoughts in the minds of the men viewing that he must be hiding a smaller than average genital development.
Pictures of individuals just aren’t necessary and I believe nudism/naturism would have less issues with the textile world without them.
Here’s a topic for you, if you haven’t covered it already. How do you feel about a parent putting nude photos of their young children online? A friend of mine recently posted this video to her facebook timeline. Is the man in the video being unfairly targeted because of some innocent pictures of his young daughter? http://www.upworthy.com/a-dad-took-these-photos-of-his-daughter-theyre-raising-some-eyebrows?g=2 Brad
Hmm . . . I don’t think parents should be putting nude photos of their kids online, no matter how innocent it may all be. The guy in this story is obviously not a sicko, but I think he showed a lack of good judgment. God knows where those photos might end up.
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I grew up in a different age and time, and the pictures he took would have been typical of family pictures when I was a kid. It wasn’t unusual to look through a family’s photo-album and see pictures of the kids taking baths or frolicking around au naturel. Posting those pictures online these days is courting trouble. The pictures are innocent enough, but the reactions were far from innocent. We live in a MUCH different world.
I’m with Fred on this one. I think that staring is rude, but I think that going to a nudist resort or a nude beach and forcing my eyes to stay above the waist is un-natural, impractical and completely defeats the point of going to a nudist resort or a nude beach in the first place. If I felt a need to deliberately overlook naked body parts, I’d be better off going to a regular beach or enjoying my own private naked time at home. Also, forcing my eyes from areas where they would naturally go, as well as worrying about who might see what I’m looking at, increases anxiety and decreases my ability to relax and enjoy the experience.
The human brain is visually curious, and there’s nothing wrong with that. There’s a difference between a casual look at a person’s body, though, and prolonged staring. It’s probably not a good idea to look down at someone’s package right after you introduce yourselves.
I don’t go to a nudist resort to sexualize anyone or be sexualized, but seeing genitals and knowing that people are going to notice my own is just part of the experience. I think that the very fact that nudists don’t mind that people are looking their genitals, the most private places of our bodies, is precisely what is liberating about the nudist experience. I personally don’t find it rude that people, men or women, look at my equipment at some point, but there is a limit on how much looking is reasonable. (Two weeks ago, when I was modeling, I was shocked but very flattered when an 81 year-old artist blurted out “You have a great ass!”)
Also, it occurs to me that there’s gotta be a reason why nudist resorts generally generally prohibited, or strictly limit, the wearing of clothes on the resort. I think that this reflects a sense of desire among most nudists to be able to see other guests naked, otherwise it wouldn’t make a difference if not all of the guests undressed.