OK, I’m going out on a limb here.
I don’t care when celebs take off their clothes.
For example, there was recently a kerfuffle when Emma Watson posed almost topless in a Vanity Fair article while she was doing press for Beauty & the Beast.
“She’s a feminist! How dare she pose in nothing but a (very) chunky knit sweater!”
Honestly, I don’t care. Posing for a national magazine not wearing much? Wouldn’t do it myself, but live and let live.
However, Ashley Graham posing nude in the latest issue of V magazine actually got me pretty excited. (WARNING: Clicking on the link will take you to naked pics of her. You have been warned.)
The purpose of the interview was to plug her new book, A New Model: What Confident, Beauty and Power Really Look Like. The article, written by Diana Ross’ daughter Tracee Ellis Ross, is a little confusing, rambling, and a bit too focused on the interviewer (Ross), and not enough on Ashley. But Graham manages to hit it out of the park with her views on being a trailblazer and role model:
…[B]eing told, “You’re fat,” “You’re ugly” or “You’re just not good enough,” and trying to live in these model standards…I hit bottom around 18. I was disgusted with myself and told my mom I was coming home. And she told me, “No, you’re not, because you told me that this was what you wanted and I know you’re supposed to do this. It doesn’t matter what you think about your body, because your body is supposed to change somebody’s life.” To this day that sticks with me because I’m here today and I feel that it’s okay to have cellulite.
Think about all she has done and how her body has changed lives. Ever since she burst onto the scene as the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition cover model last year, Ashley has been modeling’s “it” girl, and has expanded her brand to include swimwear and a lingerie collection, just to name a couple ventures.
And I agree with her that her body has changed lives. Check her out here:
I admire the power, fierceness, and confidence with which she walks down the catwalk. Her butt jiggles, she has cellulite on the back of her legs, and she even has back fat. She knows she looks good, and she absolutely owns it. And she slays it.
If I had 1% of her confidence, I’d be doing all right. But Ashley speaks with a wisdom older than her 29 years would suggest:
If you say, “I’m fat,” that’s how you’re going to feel. If you say, “I’m stupid,” that’s how you’re going to start your day. I wake up sometimes and I feel like the fattest person alive, but I’m not going to let that affect the rest of my day. Say to yourself, “I like this day. I am bold, I am beautiful, and I am brilliant.” For me, that hits the interior, the exterior, and it makes me feel smart.
That’s where she gets her confidence. It all comes from within, and the power of being beautiful truly lies in your head. I am bold, I am beautiful, and I am brilliant.
Thank you, Ashley!
In looking at her V magazine photos, for me, it’s not that she’s nude in the photos, it’s that she’s nude and she looks like the rest of us. She has cellulite, fat rolls, and stretch marks. And if she embraces the way she looks, why can’t the rest of us do the same?
Oh, and I’m totally buying her book when it comes out which, as of this writing, comes out tomorrow. SQUEE!
What are your thoughts on Ashley Graham’s photoshoot? Comment below!
Photo Credit: Ashley Graham for day 13 of LOVE Magazine Advent 2014 by Daniel Jackson, accessed May 14, 2017. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashley_Graham_(model)#/media/File:Ashley_Graham_(model)_2014.png.
Video Credit: Lane Bryant, accessed May 14, 2017. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_eiNCCHv94.