Positive body image in a media driven world…

Posted by +Bellydancingbarbie on May 18th, 2011

My friend Louise highlighted this article on Facebook today

Airbrushed Images Make Children Worry About Their Shape, Warn MPs

This is a topic very close to my heart.

I believe as adults we need to lead youth, we need to show them what happy living is and what it looks like, otherwise how can we expect them to know what true happiness feels like! We need a return to inner spirituality – that is what creates peace within ones own skin. I remember reading a research paper about perceived attractiveness, it revealed that if someone is happy within themselves and is confident, they are without exception, perceived as more attractive. It went on to state that the brain can’t distinguish between perception and reality so these people actually are more attractive.  This goes to show that it’s not about what you look like, it’s about what you feel like within yourself.

So what of the barrage of unrealistic “fake” media images?.. To get an idea of what we’re talking about check out these before and after retouch photos UNBELIEVABLE!!!! This level of retouching requires a skillful professional eye and hours of painstaking-zoomed-in work. To my mind at this level a photograph becomes art and to this end it’s fascinating – there’s something strangely more-ish of the retouched images – the reason for this is that the retouched images then apply hugely to the ‘laws of attraction’ – your brain is actually fooled into thinking that what it sees exists. For me the issue arrises when images similar to these are portrayed in the media and advertising as real life photographs. The saying “the camera never lies” may still be true but with new technology in some instances there seems something of a betrayal at final product stage. We must all be aware of this. Next time you see a mascara ad on tv, look for the bit flashing up that says “styled with lash inserts, enhanced in post production” Recent advertising regulations call for certain ads to disclose trickery and this is a great step forward towards keeping it real! Some weekly magazines still prey on the low self-esteem of a percentage of their readership, seems negative emotion in this world is all too often met with negative emotion. We need light and some of us need rescuing. Women in particular need a wholesome role model, someone with class, intelligence, self belief and belief in a sisterhood. Someone to reinstate what women once valued. We also need to remind ourselves that no one is perfect. No one should be perfect, that’s unnatural. What we should be is unique and a little bit “imperfect” Strive to be yourself and to do that well.

This recent campaign is the tip of the iceberg and a step in the right direction for society as a whole. Technology appears to be evolving faster than human behaviour right now, lets up our game, get socially educated and move with the times, enjoy art for art, stay true to yourself!

Perception appears to be reality.

BAA Edinburgh New Africa Route

Photograph subject to copyright and used with the kind permission of Gareth Easton Photography.

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