“Free the nipple” is a trending movement and campaign of the 2010s, to highlight inequality between men and women by comparing the censorship of the female nipple to the uncensored male nipple. With the use of hair to cover up the ‘offensive’ areas of the upper female body, I question this necessity of censoring the female nipple by comparing two natural things that make us up as humans. Both the nipple and hair are raw and nude – should there be a difference, and why is one considered more offensive if on a female body? The female nipple is only accepted in precise forms of art, otherwise she is objectified and shamed as promiscuous.
Utilising retouching techniques, makeup and controlled lighting furthermore censors the women in the series and emphasises an ongoing pressure to be feminine, beautiful and flawless. Silky hair, defined cheekbones and soft skin are accentuated to reiterate the ongoing pressures in my society for women in particular. While men are put under many different and unfair expectations, women are often the ones first called out on their appearance.
By placing the model in a fantasied natural environment we are challenged by the juxtaposition of fake verses natural. As animals, we have learnt behaviours from society that make us feel shame about our bodies and appearance. Censorship challenges the restrictions society puts on the representation of the female body while also celebrating the beauty of women, and the freedom to be themselves.