Combining portrait photography with writing, This Body of Work is a guided exploration of the internal narratives women hold about their bodies. Founded by photographer/writer Jen Hecht and collaboratively led by an international circle of woman portrait photographers, the aim of This Body of Work is to unravel and discard the negative stories women hold about their bodies, and to actively create new narratives of body love, gratitude, self-compassion, and joy.
Today, the vast majority of women in developed countries are unhappy with their bodies. Whether it's caused by media inundation, bullying, criticism, or another cause, the fact is that most women experience negative self-talk as it relates to their weight and appearance. And for women who have experienced significant body challenges like trauma, assault, or disease, the negative stories can run soul-deep.
For many women, body unhappiness thrums unpleasantly in the background throughout social engagements, work, sex, and ordinary moments in life, generating feelings of shame, stress, anxiety, and self-loathing. And it can certainly be said that women who are stressed by a regular drumbeat of shame, anxiety, and a cocktail of other harrowing feelings live their lives differently from women who relate to their bodies and lives with ease and happiness. When an internal clatter is ever-present in the way a woman carries herself in her profession, or makes life choices, or raises children, or handles relationships, then it ultimately influences the tenor and experience of her whole life.
So, this is a movement to change the world. A bold statement? At first glance, it could seem that way. But if one woman lives more happily with her body after this project, it will change the world for her; and that shift will have an outward ripple effect into her family, friendships, love relationships, workplace, and community. And then all the people in her expanded community will know it's possible to be the way she is. And that's where world change begins.