Body Painting and the Art of Painted Clothes


Continuing the theme of Reality Dysmorphia, but on a lighter note, I taught a workshop this weekend on the above title. Teaching students how to bend reality, to mould reality to ones’ desires and visions is great fun. It was a full-on two days and the end results were spectacular, particularly from a 16 year old student who was courageous enough to take part. Her work was wonderful and when she finally found what she really was good at she just blossomed.

The responsibility that we all have to empower others is so interesting to take responsibility for. Most of us do not empower others. There is a general mood of putting down, destroying, criticising and belittling most brought about and into mainstream consciousness by the media. Build people up and then rip them to bits like the pointless destruction of foxes who kill just because they can. What about choosing to be positive and empowering. What about, instead of waiting to be complimented, telling someone how lovely they are, or giving them an opportunity to shine and then thanking them for it?

There was a piece in one of the Planet Destroying, People Eating Sunday Papers this weekend, (I find carrying a kilo of newspaper rather a strange experience. I do not do it often and plan to do it even less, but sometimes I feel it is important to have some idea of what is going on. The Health & Safety News available on the BBC website married to the spurts from the Evening Standard do not give a balanced idea of what is happening at all. ) about how appallingly women behave towards each other with regard to body image. That we are our own worst enemy.

Easy to say, I know, but I do not agree. We give all our power to the media. We give ourselves like lambs to the bitchy, destructive, mean, negative and totally unsupportive press to devour and then cast aside.

How do we stop? I have absolutely no idea. But I will think about it. We all need to think about it.

The Press, the Media, has become an huge, nebulous beast with an insatiable hunger for horror and more and more is needed each day to feed it to the point where nothing has any value any more because it is vomited upon so quickly by the machine that makes it in the first place. It is not dissimilar to the revolution that sweeps through the nations High Street Shops. Every two weeks now, a new range of clothes is poured out and the old ones are reduced in price to less than it cost to make them. Primark, the roaring Lion of commercial destruction is the king of the beasts with clothes that do not survive even one wash and are so cheap they can be given to charity or thrown away immediately. Where is the planet saving, people conscience when it comes to clothes and our body image?

Time for a rethink. Time to take responsibility, time to say, Enough.