by Maria Sofou
At first glance, Ashley Armitage‘s photos may look like typical Instagram posts to you: just a girl taking snapshots of her friends.
However, if you examine them closer you will realize that Armitage’s models are not ashamed of showing what women nowadays are instructed to hide at all costs: their body hair. The Seattle-based photographer captures intimate portraits of a girl-world that breaks the rules that are imposed on females today and most importantly deconstructs the way young girls and women are objectified and stereotyped by the media. Armitage’s girls have period stains, wear ‘granny panties’ and don’t shave if they don’t want to.
Her followers’ reactions towards her work have always been warm, the problem, though, started when “…one person came in and said something really hateful, tagged their friends in it, and those people came in and tagged their friends.” – users started complaining and leaving hateful comments claiming to be offended by Armitage’s photographs. Indicative of people’s negative reaction towards her posts is the first photo featured above that was flagged and taken down, until she decided to repost it with this caption: “This photo does not break the rules of Instagram. This does not show ‘sexual intercourse, genitals, or fully nude buttocks,’ as their rules say aren’t allowed. There are millions of photos of girls in bikinis on Instagram. The censorship of a photo that shows a natural bikini line is like saying a woman’s natural body is obscene, abnormal, and unacceptable. It’s like saying that in order to be decent and acceptable, we must shave.” Couldn’t agree more!
We find this work deeply inspiring and we can’t possibly understand how people appear to be offended by the most natural thing in the world.
We definitely can’t wait to see more!