Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 3/23/20

  1. Cyclists get nude for safety’s sake
    On Sunday, March 8 there was a World Naked Bike Ride in Byron Bay, Australia – just one of many in the southern hemisphere on or near that date. (More are noted below.) Byron Bay is a smallish beachside town (pop. ~9200) on the eastern coast of Australia, 772 km north of Sydney and 165 km south of Brisbane (480 and 103 miles, respectively). With several fine beaches and a very moderate climate – average summer highs about 28°C (82°F) and average winter highs about 19°C (66°F) – Byron Bay is the quintessential beach/surf town.

    Not surprisingly, it’s also an ideal place for naturism – especially since part of one of the local beaches (Tyagarah Beach) is clothing-optional. There’s even a local naturist association: Byron Naturists. Because of the town’s tolerant attitude towards naturism, it’s also not surprising that the local WNBR usually gets quite a good turnout. According to the article, “Fine weather on Sunday saw 180 odd people don their Birthday Suits for a spin around Byron on Sunday.” (Was “odd” meant as a double-entendre?)

    There’s something especially interesting about photos in this article. Did you notice it? Right: there’s full-frontal nudity that hasn’t been blurred or pixelated at all. A number of other similarly “explicit” pictures accompany the online article. The article is on the website of The Byron Shire Echo – the local free weekly independent tabloid newspaper. It’s exceedingly rare for print/web media aimed at the general public to exert no censorship of such nudity. Naturists can at least hope this is part of a trend to making nudity more “normal”.

    New Zealand: Nudists bare all for environment and body positivity
    This ride had about 80 participants in Golden Bay, New Zealand, which is near the northern tip of the South Island.

    South Africa: Bottoms up — Cape Town celebrates Naked Bike Ride
    There are no figures on the number of participants in the ride, which was held on Saturday, March 7.

  2. Staying safe… and naked


    I think Marc has said it just about right:
    If by the time you read this post you are not convinced the COVID-19, a.k.a. coronavirus, is a dangerous thing, well stop reading this article and go read the papers and view the videos on the WHO site. This virus is changing the world as we know it and it may be doing so even when humanity has contained and reversed the virus threat. Like any other human beings, nudists and naturists can play a role in stopping the spread of the virus, while remaining naked and continuing promoting our lifestyle.

    Is it possible there’s anyone alive and conscious (and not still in diapers) now who isn’t quite aware of the COVID-19 pandemic? Probably very few. But this is a naturist blog, so we’ll keep discussing naturism, for the most part. You surely know much better places to keep informed about the pandemic. And if you’re confined to your home, you can’t spend all your time worrying about the bad stuff. So set aside at least a little time to enjoy being naked – and thinking about your plans for when this eventually is over. Just do all you can to be still in good health by then.

    We know the possibilities for naturist activities will be limited severely during the next several months. But that doesn’t mean naturism must be forgotten about entirely. “This too shall pass.” In the meantime, you can think about spending even more time naked in your own home – especially if you’re temporarily unemployed. Sure, that really sucks. But you’ll probably find that just being naked will cheer you up – especially as warmer days are not far off (in the northern hemisphere). And if you’re still employed and working from home – you can finally work naked.

    Keep in mind that there are still some very good opportunities for enjoying naturism with negligible exposure to the virus – if you’re careful. For example: naked hiking and naked camping.

  3. Comedians Bare It All At ImprovBoston’s Naked Comedy Showcase
    Given that The Naked Comedy Showcase “has been running for nearly 15 years”, and (at least recently) on the first Thursday of every month, it seems to have received very little media attention, and is hardly ever mentioned even in naturist publications. This is still more surprising, since the show takes place at a theater in Cambridge’s Central Square – a short walk from MIT and a slightly longer walk from Harvard.

    It’s not a show put on by rank amateurs either. The venue is for comedians experienced in stand-up comedy – who also see value in the nudity. According to the article, “Naked Comedy shows regular people’s bodies, moving in nonsexual ways. That’s what Kendra Dawsey, a comic who’s done the showcase a handful of times, likes about it. “I should be allowed to have my body in its natural state in a nonsexual context,” she says. Performing in the showcase provides her with that opportunity.” Unlike the Naked Magicians, doing a striptease throughout the show, performers are naked the whole time. Certainly a very naturist attitude.

    Amateurs – audience members in fact – are invited to perform too. “There’s even an opportunity for audience participation: [Andy] Ofiesh [who originated the event] invites audience members to walk up to the stage, undress behind the curtain, and tell a naked joke onstage.”

  4. More “best” nude beaches


    It seems as though every country that has a nude beach ranked among the top 45 in the world wants to brag about it. That’s fine with me.

    Portugal: Algarve home to two of world’s best “holiday destination for nudists”
    Portugal is well-located on the coast just west of Spain, so it has almost as much coast on the Atlantic as Spain, despite having only about 18% of the land area. So historically Portugal has been intimately connected with the sea. During the 15th and 16th centuries it actually had the first global empire. Today tourism is one of the largest segments of its economy, with about 20 million foreign tourists per year. Two of its clothing-optional beaches (Ilha Deserta and Praia das Adegas) were ranked in the top 10, being 3rd and 6th, respectively. Check here for information about those two beaches – and many others where nudity is possible.

    Croatia: Croatia has some of the best nudist beaches in the world – find out where
    Croatia actually outshines Portugal in terms of exceptional nude beaches, having two in the top five: Punta Križ beach (#2) and Sovinje beach (#4). The first is near the northern end of the country, while the second is in the center. Both are considerably north of Dubrovnik, in the southern end of the country. Of course, Croatia has a long history with naturism – although that’s little known outside of Europe. In addition to the beaches, Croatia has some large naturist campgrounds. You can check here for much more about Croatian naturism.

  5. You can now eat Sunday roast in the nude


    Naked dining events may no longer be possible as long as COVID-19 is a huge problem. But this one was scheduled for March 1, so (as far as I know) it actually occurred. British Naturism once again puts U. S. naturist organizations to shame by arranging events like this. Some local or regional naturists organizations in the U. S. may occasionally arrange naked dining events, but I haven’t seen any publicity for such things arranged by either of the national organizations (except, perhaps, in connection with larger gatherings they have).

    The event in question here was held at a pub in the Bloomsbury district of London. According to the article, the meal featured “all the usual delights, including meat, vegetables and gravy.” So the food was evidently the standard British stuff – and only the nudity made it special. Attendees, however, were “also invited to join in on a naked swim before dinner.” Apparently, staff personnel working at such events have no problems doing so, since according to the event organizer, “the staff at places where we hold our events are happy to have us back.”

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 2/29/20

  1. The Joys of Living Naked
    Dan, of The Meandering Naturist, found the recent New York Times article – which I discussed here – to be problematical in several ways, even though it presented a generally postive picture of naturism. Like Dan, I though the article was somewhat shallow and superficial. While having positive articles about naturism in prestigious mainstream media is a good thing, it’s obvious that non-naturist reporters generally don’t quite really grok what naturism is about. Naturism isn’t only about senior citizens who go about their daily lives naked in resorts that cater to them. That doesn’t quite get to why it is that people want to do such a strange thing.

    Dan wonders “whether a media splash like this actually helps or hurts the naturist cause.” He wishes (as I do) that the article had broadened the topic to explain the Joys of Living Naked. He notes that it wasn’t necessary to go to Florida to learn about the naturist lifestyle, because there are naturists right in New York City “who embrace the clothing-optional lifestyle, but not just on vacation or in retirement, but on a typical Sunday morning when the apartment is warm enough to be naked at home, even in December, and clothing is simply an option that isn’t necessary.” It’s just not necessary to go to a Florida resort to enjoy living naked, because nudity is enjoyable even in one’s own home.

    We can all, like Dan, welcome “the seemingly growing trend amidst the general public as related to the tolerance of social nudity” – as evidenced by the Times article. It’s encouraging that there’s even “a photo of a fully nude woman – from the backside – working in the kitchen” – which suggests “we’ve all finally agreed that the nation’s children will not be harmed by the incidental sighting of unadorned buttocks.” Well, maybe readers of the Times, at least, are enlightened enough to get that.

    Dan argues that naturists themselves, and the resorts they frequent, aren’t helping naturism by being “at least inadvertently, self-deprecating if not outright ridiculing themselves,” because they “simply can’t seem to resist nomenclature, sign-posts, and newsletter headlines that actually perpetuate the idea that ‘You naked people are all a little crazy’.” Sure, being lighthearted about one’s enthusiasms, instead of overly earnest about them, is OK – but going too far with that can backfire and give the wrong impression. Naturism isn’t a weird eccentricity or crotchet, but it’s not a solemn religion either. There are aficionados of many things – sports, physical fitness, computer games, etc. – who may veer too far in either direction, and naturists can do the same. But avoiding either extreme is probably the best way to go. Living naked is an enjoyable lifestyle – no more, perhaps, but no less.

    So much for the philosophy of naturism. Dan concludes with several very good points about how best to start living naked. Here’s the list (but go read the article for the details):

    • Talk to your neighbors
    • Be an advocate
    • Understand your windows
    • Landscaping and sight-lines
    • The wood burning stove
    • Pareo or sauna towel
    • Display nude artwork
    • Naked gourmet dining
    • And what about the WNBR?


    I’ll be posting another article soon with some similar suggestions for enjoying a naked lifestyle – and at the same time normalizing nudity.

  2. Constructive Ways to Celebrate and Promote Nudism


    Here’s another voice supporting the idea of normalizing nudity: “Lately, we have been happy to see the hashtags #normalizenudism and #normalizenaturism going around social media.” Probably almost everyone who’s read this far will agree with the idea. But it will take more than that to make it actually happen. So this article adds six more suggestions about how to do that.

    • Lobby your local government for nude beaches & other naked places
      While the goal is certainly important, this may put the cart before the horse. To be successful in the effort, there needs to be plenty of support in your community for designating nude beaches and naked places. And that probably means first convincing many in the community that nudity should be considered normal. How? Other suggestions here would be good places to start.

    • Come out to your family and friends
      Absolutely. These are the first people who need to be persuaded that nudity is good. Watch here for much more about that.

    • Take a stand against anti-nudity policies
      This is another cart before the horse. Official policies won’t change unless there’s community support for that. However, individual naturists should be supported publicly if they’re unfairly treated because of, for example, unreasonable complaints from neighbors.

    • Support nudist networks and businesses
      If you’re fortunate enough to have naturist-friendly businesses in your area, you should certainly support them. If “networks” refers to regional or national organizations, they should be supported too – if they can, in return, support local naturists. Being active in online naturist groups will help individual naturists support each other and naturism in general.

    • Stop shaming others
      Be careful how you deal with naturists who may have personal values different from yours. Shaming should be reserved only for people who link non-naturist values to naturism or behave unlawfully in ways inconsistent with naturism.

    • Share your first-time stories
      Assuming you are “out” as a naturist, why stop with only the first-time stories? Don’t hesitate to let others know of all the enjoyable naturist things you do. Yes, most people feel a little awkward the first time they’re naked “in public”, so it’s good to let anyone who might be interested in naturism know that’s a very temporary problem. But also tell about how much can be enjoyed after becoming comfortable with nudity.

  3. British Naturism books out Hollywood Bowl in Ashford for naked session


    The news is that “The British Naturism (BN) has organised a social event in Ashford for its naked members.” British naturists are very fortunate to have a national organization that actually arranges for many local naturist events around the country. Naturists in the U. S. and other countries should be so lucky.

    Wait, what? Bowling??? Isn’t that something that went out of fashion, oh, 20 or 30 years ago? Well, yes, perhaps to some extent. But people – including naturists – still do it. Just stop to think about it for a moment. Bowling, despite its stodgy image, is an almost ideal activity for naturists. Bowling alleys (those still in business) are private (when reserved for naturists) and (usually) have comfortable temperatures regardless of the weather outdoors. The activity is generally very social, and individuals can concentrate on their own performance, instead of trying to defeat an opponent or win a competition (as in tennis and many other sports). Best of all, success in bowling depends more on skill than on strength, speed, or endurance – so people without exceptional physical gifts can do well. If naturists live somewhere there’s an alley nearby and they can get a sufficiently large group to rent the facility for a few hours, a bowling party could be a fun naturist activity at any time of the year.

    More details: here

  4. Naked bathers want to ‘piggyback’ on Wild Atlantic Way’s success


    Nudity on certain public beaches in Ireland has actually been legal only since 2017. Yet many beaches in Cork County have been used discreetly by naturist for years. According to a spokesperson for the Irish Naturist Association, “West Cork boasts several beaches that have been attracting naturists for decades.” As I noted here, Ireland is rapidly becoming a good place for naturism.

    The “Wild Atlantic Way” (WAW) “is a tourism trail on the west coast, and on parts of the north and south coasts, of Ireland.” The spokesperson is calling for “providing signage and officially recognising many of the secluded ‘unofficial’ nudist beaches dotted along the region’s coast” – along the WAW route. The hope is that, given recognition, naturist usage of the beaches will become “very normal very quickly”, and consequently, naturists “will spend time and money in these areas.” Arguments like this should be effective in promoting naturist destinations elsewhere. This has definitely happened with Blind Creek Beach in St. Lucie County, Florida.

  5. I Went to a Nude Beach With a Friend, and We Loved It


    This is a pretty good first-time story. James, whose story this is, certainly had the right attitude: “Beach days are hard to beat. You are lying in the warm sunshine, have sand between your toes, and can hear the sound of waves crashing. What could be better, right? Maybe . . . going naked?” He invited his friend, Nicole, to go with him to check out Black’s Beach while he was visiting San Diego. Neither of them had been to a nude beach before, but they “were excited to see what it was all about.” Not surprisingly, for first-timers, James says that once on the beach, “it was very awkward for the first 20 minutes or so.” But after that, he dropped his “shorts, and ran straight into the ocean. Nicole quickly followed, and within minutes, it just wasn’t weird anymore.” Most readers who’ve tried it know that’s usually how it goes – if they get naked at all. Unfortunately, most non-naturists find this truth hard to believe.

  6. Albemarle Co. yoga studio to host another nude class


    Charlottesville, a smallish city located in Albemarle County, Virginia is a college town, home of the University of Virginia, and the county population is about 150,000, so it’s not especially surprising that there are more than a dozen yoga studios in the area. However, only one of them, apparently, offers nude yoga sessions – the Elements Yoga Studio. Unfortunately, the sessions aren’t coed. There was a session for women in February, which “turned into a sold out event earlier in the month,” according to the article. A session for men was held on February 29, according to the studio’s calendar, and another one for women is scheduled for March 13.

    “The body-positive yoga allowed women to step into a safe, judgement-free [sic] space where they were free to take off as much clothing as they felt comfortable with,” the article says. So the class is actually just clothing-optional. There’s no information on how many opted to be naked. It’s a good thing, at least, that the option is available – even only once a month. Perhaps interest in nude activities will grow as more people have the opportunity to experience them.

    More: here

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 2/19/20

  1. Dining unclad de rigeur at Zipolite’s annual nudist festival
    Although there are some food-related stories below, this isn’t really one of them. Zipolite is a popular clothing-optional beach in Mexico on the Pacific Ocean coast south of Mexico City. This is the fifth year of an annual and very popular naturist festival on the beach. This year’s attendance was about 6000. The beach has had clothing-optional use since at least the 1950s, but has only recently become much better known outside the local area.

    Since many attendees spend much of their time on the beach, they often eat there too – but that’s only in addition to a variety of other common beach activities. For instance, volleyball, body painting, musical performances, yoga, or simply sunbathing. Since the beach is only about 15° north of the Equator, temperatures in January-February are quite comfortable – in the 80s (F).

    More: Everything You Need to Know before Visiting the Zipolite Nudist Festival 2020, The Zipolite Nudist Festival 2020: Our Experience

  2. Florida bill would make it legal to be naked at a nude beach


    Under section 800.03 of Florida’s legal code “exposure of sexual organs” is illegal in public or if visible from someone else’s property if it’s done in a “vulgar or indecent manner”. It’s also illegal simply to be “naked” in public “except in any place provided or set apart for that purpose”. However, both of these provisions are somewhat vague, especially in case of simply being naked on a beach that’s traditionally “clothing-optional”. And what about exposure of female breasts?

    In particular, there are several beaches in Florida that have long been popular with naturists, including Haulover Beach in Miami, and portions of Apollo and Playalinda beaches in the Canaveral National Seashore. And a new clothing-optional beach has just been approved near Fort Pierce (as noted here). It’s not entirely clear that those locations have officially been “set apart for that purpose”. This new legislation would take care of the ambiguities – if it becomes law, which isn’t a foregone conclusion. The bill would expressly allow being “naked in public … including, but not limited to, clothing-optional beaches.”

    The bill could well become law, since Florida is slowly waking up to the benefits to its tourist industry of people interested in clothing-optional recreation. Given the prevalence of many naturist resorts around the state, local tourist bureaus may want to attract naturists to their own clothing-optional places. (The article is also here.)

  3. Nude beach quietly routine at Volusia’s southern tip
    The beach in question is the aforementioned Apollo Beach in the Canaveral National Seashore. (There’s an unincorporated place of the same name on the opposite side of the state, which should not be confused with the actual beach.) Clothing-optional use is traditional only in the southern portion, adjacent to parking lot #5. Unfortunately, the parking lot has only 35 parking places, and it fills up early on any day with decent weather. (There’s sometimes a similar problem with parking lot #13 at Playalinda Beach, adjacent to the clothing-optional section.)

    The small parking lot is a problem, since it’s a 2-mile hike to the next parking lot to the north – especially if you need to carry much, like beach chairs or a cooler. Of course, if you’re not alone, you can drop companions and gear off, then go back to park. Still it’s a hassle, especially since the lagoon on the side of the road opposite the ocean is quaintly named Mosquito Lagoon, and appropriately so. Fortunately, the beach itself at lot #5 is not only clothing-optional but also less popular with the mosquitoes.

    According to the article, regulars at the clothing-optional part of Apollo Beach are a fairly laid-back bunch. They’re not all naturists, but they have relaxed attitudes towards nudity, and are generally content to share the beach with others, whether or not they’re naked. One beach regular, who doesn’t get naked, was quoted remarking “Some people get naked, other people don’t, and everyone gets along.” If only the same level of tolerance prevailed in many other places…

  4. Top 10 U.S. Nude Beaches


    Articles like this appear periodically in widespread sources (at least in the western half of the world). Usually these are found in media having a general readership. But this one is on a naturist resort’s website – DeAnza Springs in southern California. Even so, all places mentioned are actual beaches, not resorts, and are open for public use (with at most small charges for parking). Another list, which includes 5 U. S. beaches and 5 in other countries, was discussed here. (The 5 U. S. beaches are also in the present article.)

    Some of the beaches mentioned, such as Haulover, are frequently included in lists of best clothing-optional beaches worldwide, but others probably wouldn’t qualify. The actual criteria for inclusion of beaches here aren’t stated. Perhaps it’s mainly popularity, which would be related to convenience of access (certainly one important criterion). However, Black’s Beach is notoriously difficult to reach, as it requires steep climbs down and up tall cliffs just behind the beach. The reviews would have been better if they’d included more information on the convenience factor – things like distance from population centers, physical ease of access, typical climate, etc. Instead, there’s often more about the history of the beach, which isn’t necessarily useful for potential visitors.

    In one case (“San Gregorio Private Beach”) the information given is confusing. San Gregorio State Beach is part of the State Park system, and as such is not clothing-optional. But there’s an excellent large beach adjacent to the north that is clothing-optional. It’s “private” in the sense that the parking area is on private land and not always open. The beach description, however, clearly describes the State Park beach. What a shame the description here isn’t better. The history of San Gregorio is actually relevant, since it’s regarded as the oldest established clothing-optional beach in the U. S. The location of the beach isn’t fortuitous, because it was selected in 1966 by a few young people from San Francisco’s nascent hippie culture as the most suitable beach for skinnydipping after scouting many locations not too far from the city.

  5. Public speaker and The English Cream Tea Company boss Jane Malyon gives a talk at a Bournemouth hotel to 180 naturists


    The article is an account by the speaker, Jane Malyon, about the talk she gave in January to a naturist group (which wasn’t named) that was spending the weekend at a hotel (also not named) in Bournemouth (UK). What’s interesting about this article is how it treats as something quite normal a talk given by a public speaker to a large group of naturists. Jane was fully informed beforehand to expect the audience to be completely naked, and evidently she wasn’t fazed at all by the prospect. Not even, according to her report, when “immediately upon entering the hotel, I was surrounded by lovely, smiling, friendly people, all of whom were totally stark naked.”

    To some extent, her reaction wasn’t too surprising. Jane describes herself as “a professional speaker and author, and an expert on the history and etiquette of afternoon teas, appearing regularly on TV and radio.” She’s also a managing director of a company in the UK “afternoon tea” business. So she’s paid to do these talks promoting somewhat of a niche industry. Why, after all, pass up another good opportunity to talk about something she loves merely because the audience comprises “people who have no clothes on. Absolutely nothing.” She was even “advised that my own clothing would be optional.” Evidently she didn’t immediately dismiss the idea, but eventually declined based on advice from her agent, on the basis that there would be a photographer.

    The balance of the article has only laudatory things to say about the naturist audience and the overall experience. She “didn’t find the nakedness in front of me particularly off-putting, though perhaps a little surreal.” However, she does observe that “the majority of attendees at this event were middle-aged or older.” Still, one has to wonder whether her invitation to speak might have perhaps been less likely if the group were mainly younger and less interested in the “afternoon tea” business.


  6. The Joy of Cooking Naked


    On one hand, it’s generally a positive thing when naturism gets attention from such a thoroughly mainstream organ as the New York Times. Articles like this can help by exploding prevalent misunderstandings about naturism, such as the notion that it’s all about sex or swinging. On the other hand, in the process of doing that articles haul out trite bromides such as “don’t cook bacon while you’re naked”. So while dissing some common clichés they fall back on promoting others. Give it up, eh? Naturism can really be understood only by trying it, not just reading about it. Sort of an acquired taste, you might say (if you want to play on the culinary metaphor). Keep that in mind when discussing naturism with your friends.

    The subtext in this article is that naturism has some “special” relationship with cooking and eating. Actually, what’s probably going on is that the writer had to stress the food connection so the article could enliven the Times’s food section. The truth, of course, is that not only cooking and eating but almost anything that people take pleasure in can also be enjoyed naked. And besides, you might get naked to use a swimming pool or spa, and then get dressed afterward. If you’re not usually naked at home, there’d be little reason to get naked for cooking and eating. But if you are usually naked, you’d probably stay naked at mealtimes. Still, there is a connection, tenuous though it may be, between naturism and food, because some early forms of naturism also embraced vegetarianism. But that’s not much of a thread to hang a story on. Vegetarianism is certainly a valid choice, but these days the preferences of naturists with respect to food are as varied as among most other types of people.

    The naturist element of the article focuses on life in Florida’s Lake Como Family Nudist Resort. Presenting the stories of various long-time habitué’s there – often in their own words – allows for highlighting some of the unique aspects of naturist lifestyles. In particular, sharing meals together informally or having more orchestrated dinner parties has always been especially popular with naturists – because it’s a natural justification for getting together naked with others. Just about everyone likes to eat, whereas not everyone cares a lot for board games, dancing, jigsaw puzzles, or what-have-you. Sharing food together is as old as humans and even their ancestral species. Those prehistoric folks were probably naked, too, as least in the warmer climes.

    Having decent restaurants is a must for upscale naturist clubs and resorts. More recently there have been attempts to start clothing-optional restaurants as a business. One-off events of that type often sell out long in advance. Unfortunately, however, such things have had rather little commercial success. Even the mainstream restaurant business is very hard to break into. With a much smaller potential customer base, business is even harder for naturist restaurants. That’s not necessarily such a bad thing for naturists, though. Socializing in a familiar, comfortable space with others who share an unorthodox lifestyle – is bound to be more satisfying than what’s possible in restaurants full of strangers.

  7. Inside the World of Nudist Cooking


    This is basically a concise summary of the New York Times article above. But it makes the most important points much more succinctly:
    There are millions of nudists in America, and because they are people, they do many of the same things other people do — they just do them naked. As revealed in a recent New York Times feature detailing the lives of the naked residents of the Lake Como Family Nudist Resort in Lutz, Florida, this roster of otherwise normal tasks and activities nudists happen to perform naked includes cooking, because why wouldn’t it?

  8. Food in the nude: Switzerland to get its first naked restaurant


    Despite the immense difficulties of making a restaurant for naturists into a sustainable business, hope (seemingly) springs eternal. According to reported plans, the establishment will be called “Edelweiss Basel – Nudisten Lounge” and will open at the end of February. Patrons will be able to leave their clothes in a cloakroom, although anyone not brave enough to be naked can keep their underwear on. (Ewwwww. Seriously?) And waiters will be naked. If this isn’t somebody’s idea of a joke, we can certainly hope this one does better than the O’Naturel in Paris. Switzerland isn’t exactly noted as a popular place for naturism – although naked performance art has been done publicly in the streets of Zurich.

  9. Look Ma! No Hands!


    Fred is a southern California naturist who enjoys a wide spectrum of naturist activities – most of which aren’t confined to private naturists resorts. The annual “Bare to Breakers” run in San Francisco in May is one of his favorites. He has a whole post about it here. But that’s not all. Mainly he simply enjoys nudity, either alone or with others:
    I just enjoy being nude. Period. Don’t need an excuse for it. Have no interest in rationalizing it. I enjoy it alone. I enjoy it socially. I enjoy it if I’m the only one nude and I enjoy it just as much if everyone is nude. I enjoy it up on a stage doing improv in front of a hundred complete strangers or in a living room with a couple of friends or alone on the trail miles from anywhere.

    He notes that “nude public events have become much more common.” “Bare to Breakers” is just the informal name used by naturists who run or walk naked in the official Bay to Breakers event. But there are a number of similar examples where public nudity is allowed, some also in San Francisco. Additionally, there are also World Naked Bike Rides in many cities around the world, Seattle’s Fremont Solstice Parade, Spencer Tunick “installations”, political protests of many sorts, body painting events, public naked performance art events, and occasional naked museum tours (see below).

    A more novel type of event with public nudity is do-it-yourself theatrical projects as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival, which can involve nudity and which Fred is planning to do, as he describes here, here, and here. Another Fringe Festival event with plentiful nudity was a production of the play DISROBED, which was reported on here.

    Fred also enjoys nude hiking, and his blog contains a number of reports of these treks. He summarizes his naturist interests thusly:
    As far as nudie activities go, I prefer to get off the reservation. Resorts can easily turn into expanded closets. They can become well-appointed ghettoes if you let them. Trips to hot springs, hiking in the wild, camping in remote places, parties, public events, that’s where I’ll find my space. I am not a big fan of highly regulated environments.

  10. Australian museum opens its doors to an exhibition aimed at nudists


    This article appeared on the Brazilian Os Naturistas site (without a link to the original), so it’s in Portuguese. But translations into other languages are available by selecting the flag of the country whose language is closest to yours.

    Although the linked article is recent, it apparently describes an event in January 2018 at the National Gallery of Australia. A better, contemporary account is here. 120 people who wished to be naked for the tour got tickets to attend. According to the article “The event was held around his hyper-realistic exhibition exploring the human figure through a series of sculptures and paintings.” So much of the artwork on display involved nudity. Some of it was so “hyper-realistic” – as in the picture – that it’s difficult to distinguish the attendees from the art. There’s a video at the link that conveys the best impression of the event, even though the nudity of the attendees (but not the art) was censored.

    The National Gallery has had naked events before, for example a 2015 event described here, here, here, here, here. and here.

    Twitter link

  11. Japan’s naked art of body positivity


    For almost all practical purposes, naturism doesn’t exist in Asia (except for Thailand). In Japan, however, there is a bizarre kind of pseudo-naturism. That is, full nudity – but only (for the most part) in rigidly gender-segregated facilities. The Asian mind is, as usual, inscrutable to westerners.

    Naturists may not be especially excited about Japan as a travel destination, but it’s at least worth noting a couple of things. First, there are two types of public bathing facilities where nudity is required. There are the well-known onsens, which are natural hot springs. Since these are located near volcanically active areas, they’re usually far from urban centers. There’s also another type of public bathing facility known as a sento. Since these heat water from the local water system, they may be found almost anywhere. Second, since onsens are mostly in unurbanized areas, they provide a much more “natural” experience and are a bit more likely not to require gender segregation. In either case, however, note that Japan, being what it is, has many unbreakable customs and rules which must be observed. In addition to many rules of proper etiquette for using any bathing facility, there are other “gotchas”, such as a strong Japanese prejudice against tattoos anywhere on the body.

    Much more information: here, here, here

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 1/11/20

  • Artist creates exhibition of naked paintings after asking women to ‘send nudes’
    The misleading headline seems to suggest a nefarious scheme to collect nude pictures. But it’s not. The article is about professional artist Sophie Tea, whose conventional paintings on canvas may be seen on her Instagram page. But Sophie wanted to take things a step further. The article quotes her saying “I’ve always wanted to paint women” – and it’s meant literally: to paint on bodies in the same style as she paints on canvas. So she asked for volunteers – and received pictures from more than 1000 volunteers. Those she selected were duly painted and participated in a live exhibition (called Send Nudes) in which “Naked volunteers proudly walked the pink carpet after Sophie had painted them in colourful and abstract brush strokes.” Sophie’s objective? “to create work that was really meaningful” and to help “promote body confidence in women”.

  • 2019 HCA Holiday Campaign was a Success!


    Bodypainting, which can be done indoors, should be a popular activity for naturists during the colder months of the year. In the previous collection of articles there was one on the topic, and there’ll probably be more to come in the next few months. There are, already, two in this collection. The second of those spotlights the work of well-known bodypainter Andy Golub and his Human Connection Arts organization. Andy, who’s based in the New York City area, normally works outdoors, and in public. But he’s also active during the winter, and has scheduled work ongoing through January. It will involve “human canvas painting”.  Anyone interested in participating may submit an application here.

  • Spencer Tunick’s Latest Nude Artwork Causes Splash In QLD Hotspot


    Spencer Tunick, another artist who does unconventional work using naked bodies, is still finding new ideas after 25 years of making art out of “installations” of large numbers of naked people. (See the article on Tunick in the last collection.) He also enjoys working in Austalia (especially in the southern hemisphere’s summer). Two of his largest installations were in Melbourne and Sydney (4500 and 5000 naked people, respectively). According to the present article, he believes Australians have a “real heartfelt understanding of how important the body is in art”. That they deserve praise “for being body positive”.  And that “Australians are much more body positive and more open than [in] most other countries.” The last is probably true in comparison with the U. S. Even so, Australia’s laws aren’t quite so liberal as New Zealand’s, where there are generally no specific laws against nudity on the beaches. In the state of Queensland, for example, where Tunick’s latest installation was photographed, there’s well-known intolerance of nudity on the beaches.
    More about this event: Spencer Tunick Invites Australians to Bare All on Whitsunday Island

  • Nudists call for Kiwis to join them on international ‘Day Without Togs’
    Here’s evidence of the popularity and tolerance of nudity in New Zealand. A naturist group there, known as Free Beaches, has encouraged everyone in the country to celebrate an upcoming event in January. It’s called the “Day Without Togs”, was reportedly started in Spain in 2007, and will be celebrated on local beaches the last Saturday of January. (Understandably, the date’s not that popular among northern hemisphere naturists.) How many suitable beaches does New Zealand have? You can get a good idea from this Google Map. In our previous collection of articles, there were two related to New Zealand, both based on information from the blogger Naked Kate. Spencer Tunick should plan an installation in New Zealand, if he hasn’t already.
    More: New Zealand nudists invite newbies for ‘Day Without Togs’ celebration

  • Auckland nudists encourage families to join them at pre-Christmas beach event
    That January beach event wasn’t even the first one this season in NZ. There was already one just before Christmas, promoted by an Auckland naturist group. It was called “Barely Three Days Before Christmas”. And it wasn’t the only one – there was another further south on the same day: “If you are down south we will again be celebrating the summer solstice with a nude swim at St Kilda beach Dunedin. 6pm December 22,” according to one person quoted in the article. Actually, why use the solstice to have a special day for a summer skinny-dip in New Zealand? Merely a few extra minutes of sunlight? The same thing must happen every day in the summer there. Unfortunately, the event wasn’t completely without incident. A park ranger did stop to question what was going on, but ultimately did not try to stop it.

  • Strip down in Surrey for heart charity naked walk



    Here’s another example of an appropriate use of nudity to draw attention and support to a worthy cause. The backstory is that a naturist, Philip Baker, who was diagnosed with heart disease over 30 years ago but was eventually treated successfully for it, decided to become an active fundraiser for the British Heart Foundation to support research into heart disease. Philip stated that he’s “been a lifelong naturist quietly enjoying my garden in the nude and taking the odd Mediterranean holiday ‘au naturelle’.” What is hoped to be an annual event will be held on the summer solstice (in England) this June. Participants will pay an entry fee of £20 and pledge to raise an additional £100 for the BHF. In return, they’ll be entitled to take either a 2km or 5km walk – naked – (at night) through a very scenic local park. Even spectators are welcome (for a £10 fee). Organizers are hoping for as many as 500 participants.
    More about this: 500 people could walk naked in park so people don’t have a stroke; You can walk through Painshill Park naked but only for one night

  • Be at Peace with Yourself


    This is from the Bold & Naked yoga studio in New York City, but it offers good advice that’s not limited to yoga practice. Nudity’s not even mentioned explicitly. However, this is the very first recommendation: “The first step to being at peace with yourself is to accept yourself.” And the fifth is: “accept yourself with all the flaws and weaknesses you may have.” Clearly, this is a major worry people have that prevents them from wholeheartedly embracing social nudity, because of how they assume their body, no matter what it’s actually like, inevitably has flaws and isn’t “good enough”. Naturists know that worry can be overcome by accepting one’s body (which doesn’t preclude taking steps, such as yoga exercise, to improve what’s amenable to being improved). The other recommendations are also very appropriate.

  • Famous Naked Comedy DISROBED Returns to Hollywood


    This production was previously mentioned here back in May. You can read that account for more about the play. But it’s a good sign that it’s being done again – on a repeating basis, in fact, on the first Saturday of every month (but not stated for how long). It’s especially encouraging, since the play is based on Barely Proper, by Tom Cushing, which was written in 1931, but not performed on Broadway (in a revised version) until 1970 (to unfavorable reviews). In addition, the audience is required to be naked too. That shouldn’t be necessary, but it may keep out some voyeurs, and perhaps even induce audience members to experiment more with social nudity themselves. And the production last June was favorably received. According to the article that included “racking up rave reviews and winning the Producers Encore! Award along with a nomination for ‘Best Immersive Show’.”

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 1/5/20

  • Student rides her horse completely naked in film to urge other riders to wear safety helmet
    It’s an interesting development that clean nudity is being used to attract attention to worthy causes. In this case it’s a rather limited purpose: encouraging riders in (competitive?) horse-riding events to wear safety helmets. The general idea is a legitimate use of nudity. Of course, hardly anyone who notices this story is likely to be someone the precaution is intended for. World Naked Bike Rides are a far batter example of this sort of thing. Also many calendars featuring (very) limited nudity are produced in order to donate sales profits for worthy causes. Why should naturists pay attention to any of this? Perhaps because it isn’t necessarily a self-serving “exploitation” of nudity, but rather has the effect of normalizing nudity. (Granted, personal attention-seeking could also figure in this.)

  • Get your kit off: this skinny-dipper is writing a NZ guidebook and is looking for models


    It’s summer now in New Zealand, and naturist blogger Kate Uwins, currently residing in Kiwi-land, who has been exploring the country for three years, is putting together a guide book for skinny-dipping there. New Zealand is probably just behind England itself in being the most naturist-friendly, English-speaking place on the planet. Kate thinks NZ “is just the best place in the world to skinny dip. You’ve got about a million beautiful places to go swimming; beaches, rivers, lakes, waterfalls. They’re just around every corner”.  And she points out that “There are no snakes, no crocodiles, nothing dangerous that’s going to get you.” (Not to mention horrendous wildfires.) Of course, visitors should be cautioned to be wary of the explosive volcanic islands. Several other naturist bloggers are currently attempting to support their blogging efforts by offering for sale things like guide books – and this should be considered a good thing, to the extent that it promotes healthy naturism.

  • Midnight bath


    Kate’s new blog itself is a fine example of assertive naturist advocacy. In this post she makes a number of good points. For starters: “It is astonishing me how easy it seems to be to get random strangers to get their kit off. Within minutes of meeting people, we are naked together! This is fantastic! … I’m talking about broad daylight, sober, non-sexual nudity that leads to joy, smiles, and great stories.” And: “What better way to escape the craziness of this modern world: the Trumps and brexits, the political madness and the consumerist chaos, than to disappear for a little while, strip off your clothes and reconnect with nature and yourself.” And: “Why is it that we are so scared of others seeing our naked bodies? Are we scared of being laughed at or scared of it turning into something sexual? Is it not possible to be naked and there to be no sexual connotations? Is it not possible to see our bodies as something other than a sexual object?”

    Non-naturists and people still new to naturism may disbelieve such utopian ideas. “Can you, could I, really do that?” Sadly, naturism in the past century hasn’t really advanced much, if at all. Timidity isn’t a winning strategy. We need many more believers like Kate.

  • Metrópolis – Intramurs I. Spencer Tunick


    Have you ever been one of the lucky few to take part in a Spencer Tunick photoshoot? Probably not, but here’s a spectacular 25-minute documentary video of a Tunick photoshoot during the Intramurs art festival in Valencia, Spain. Tunick may not consider himself (personally) a naturist, but his work over several decades is certainly a wonderful testament to the beauty, allure, and expressiveness of nudity. The video’s narration is in Spanish, but there’s an accompanying transcription. (It’s also in Spanish, but can be translated using Google.)
    An article (also in Spanish) of the making of the video: El making off de la multitudinaria foto de desnudos bajo las Torres de Serranos

  • Bodypainting. It keeps fascinating me.


    Bodypainting is a visual art form quite different from Tunick’s photography – but it’s even more appropriate for naturists. It allows for imagining the naked body in fascinatingly different ways. It must be far more enjoyable for the model than trying to stand motionless in a single pose for an extended period of time. And also, for the “model” (or rather the “canvas”), it provides the exhilarating experience of using one’s body to be a literal medium of artistic expression – like a dancer, but in a very different way.

  • Progressive Social Nudity — A Year in Review
    The New York City organization known as Just Naked describes its intention as “to create nude events that look and feel like any other popular clothed event, but with just naked participants.” The goal is specifically described as “normalizing naked everywhere” – something that most naturists also, probably, see as a desirable goal. The events are basically private parties, held in the NYC area, and organized by participants at their homes or other suitable places. The event must be nonsexual, and everyone’s expected to be naked. In other words, just the sort of ordinary parties any naturist might organize or attend. In order to attend an event, one must purchase a ticket, which presumably keeps the attendance at a manageable level and may compensate the organizer for expenses. According to the article “We held upwards of 70 events this year, sold over 700 tickets, and turned dozens of first-timers on to the benefits of social nudity. And we had a blast doing it!” According to the website, there are currently four events scheduled for the remainder of January.

    However, there’s a problem – a severe gender imbalance problem. The article states “sometime around the middle of summer we noticed that most of our events were skewing 9-to-1 in favor of men. We had women leaving the events before they even started, and most never returned.” So events are now designated as “Open to All” or “Women Only”. That’s rather draconian, however, so another category has been defined as “Femme Fwd” (described at the link), which gives women more control over attendance by men. The details are a bit complicated: “These events will only be available to men who are vetted by a woman who has attended our events.” Some policy similar to this might help with the gender imbalance found at most naturist venues. But in the long term steps need to be taken to make naturist events and venues intrinsically more comfortable for women. One way to accomplish that is for clubs to put efforts directly into promoting naturism to women, so that many more will attend – as well as doing what’s necessary for everyone to have an enjoyable experience.
    Here’s a news article on the club: There’s almost nothing you can’t do naked if you’re in this club

  • Retired Miami Cop Now Performing Naked Ventriloquy Show
    Whether or not you’re particularly talented in some sort of performance, doing it fully naked will probably attract more notice than otherwise. (And I’m not saying there isn’t talent in this particular example.) The type of performance doesn’t really matter – one that’s a serious art form such as making music, dancing, gymnastics, or acting. Or one perhaps a bit easier to master, such as comedy, reading poetry, or ventriloquism. There have been examples (sometimes many) of each sort of performance done in the nude before an audience. Naturists should welcome – and patronize, when possible – much, much more of this, because it’s another way to normalize nudity.

  • How to visit a Milan museum totally naked
    The event is scheduled for January 18, 2020. Unfortunately, it’s already sold out. So even if you reside in the Milan area, you’ve missed the boat. But this is yet another instance of an art museum providing an occasion where visitors may explore the galleries completely naked. Sometimes clothing is optional, but nudity is often required, as in this case. Considering how quickly such events usually sell out, it’s surprising they aren’t offered more often, and by many additional museums. In a metropolitan area of sufficient size, why not once a month – or even once a week? Could it be that naturists or others who’re open-minded about nudity just aren’t that interested in fine art? They should be, given how often nudity is the subject of much painting, sculpture, and performance art.
    Here’s more information, if you happen to read Italian.

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 12/21/19

  • I signed up for nude modelling to challenge myself
    Modeling naked for an art drawing or painting class is scary – even if you’re used to going naked at home sometimes or even visiting a nude beach occasionally. It’s even scarier if you have no significant experience being naked in front of strangers who will be staring intently at your naked body for an hour or two. Why did Sonya do it? A friend who had done nude modeling for years had “always spoken about how much fun she had found it.” Sonya writes that she had “spent so long working to the point of getting to be ok with my body, instead of being at war with it” – and she now needed to challenge herself on her progress.

    She writes about her very first experience modeling naked, her anxiety about it initially, and her feelings in the first few minutes. “Disrobing was difficult. All those eyes, staring at me.” But it turned out very well. “Seeing myself through other people’s eyes, laid bare on the paper was amazing for my body confidence…. The next time I am asked to life model, I’ll respond with an enthusiastic “Yes!”.” In light of the next article to be discussed, what this shows is that the discomfort from people staring at one’s naked body is a challenge – but it can be conquered by developing sufficient self-confidence. Most naturists aren’t exhibitionists or ecdysiasts, and they don’t expect to get sexual gratification from being seen naked by others. But neither do they need to be scared or concerned about being seen naked. The pleasure of nudity is just a result of accepting one’s body and not being encumbered by clothing.

  • “Staring is a big no-no”: All the questions you have about nudism, answered


    This article from an Australian source relays advice from the founder of Get Naked Australia. Most of it is aimed at people who know little about naturism or nudism, but are curious about it (in a positive or negative way). The article’s title singles out one specific issue – the concerns people have about being stared at while partially or fully naked.

    This is a more complicated issue than is generally acknowledged. On one hand, people having little or no experience with social nudity believe that most of its devotees have great self-confidence and no embarrassment about being naked. That’s not true, although it should be. On the other hand, people who do have some experience with social nudity often think that others who stare at their bodies are simply being gauche and uncouth. That fails to understand the previous point.

    It’s usually very good advice not to stare – whether intentionally or not – at the bodies of anyone who’s fully or partly naked. While the naked person might be fairly comfortable with nudity, if they’re relatively new to social nudity they may feel mildly to severely uncomfortable about being stared at. Of course, the same is true of anyone who’s stared at because of almost anything “unusual” in their physical appearance, manner of dress, awkward behavior due to disabilities, etc.

    However, people who know little or nothing about social nudity probably assume that anyone who’s fully or partly naked has overcome any sense of shame associated with nudity and therefore must be insensitive to and unperturbed by the stares of others. That’s not a good assumption.

    There are now a variety of “public” places where nudity is accepted and perhaps even common – such as clothing-optional beaches and resorts, fairly isolated places outdoors, or legally approved public demonstrations such as World Naked Bike Rides. Anyone who chooses full or partial nudity in such places – either for a particular occasion or as part of a consistent lifestyle – has probably decided that nudity is at least harmless or actually quite a good thing. Such people have to some degree or other overcome unhealthy body shame and society’s irrational aversion to nudity.
    There’s a mismatch of assumptions on both sides of this issue. People who don’t know much about social nudity may assume, incorrectly, that most who participate in it are quite self-confident about their nudity and have no feelings about shame or embarrassment related to it, and no concerns about how others will react to it. However, someone who’s nude in “public” may be just experimenting with it. They may have gathered the courage to try it, but are still quite sensitive to negative reactions from others.

    On the other side, people who stare at others who’re partially or fully naked may be doubtful about the legality of the nudity and probably still think that open nudity is improper and even “immoral”. So if they stare at others who’re not “properly” clothed it’s not necessarily right to assume that the staring is consciously disrespectful or simply uncouth. It’s more charitable to assume starers still suffer from irrational body shame and are simply behaving in accord with their social conditioning.

    Just as with people who become comfortable as nude models, most people who have enough time and experience with social nudity are able to overcome uneasiness when less enlightened others stare at them. Once one becomes convinced there’s nothing “wrong” about choosing not to cover certain parts of their body it’s easy to enjoy nudity and feel no shame about it. By realizing that staring results from the typical unfamiliarity or disapproval regarding nudity present in most cultures, it’s easier to understand and ignore impolite staring. Unfortunately, it takes a little time for people who are relatively new to being naked in a clothing-optional situation to become self-confident about their nudity. Since it’s usually difficult to know whether staring will cause discomfort to someone, the best general policy is not to stare.

  • Third Time’s the Charm?
    If you think it’s scary to be stared at naked in a life drawing class of maybe 10 or 20 people, what would you think about being naked in New York’s Times Square in broad daylight – open to the stares of many hundreds of complete strangers? It’s actually possible to do that legally, with the proper permits. And it can be done without embarrassment, even if you’re not an exhibitionist (which, hopefully, you aren’t). The naturist activist who goes by the name Ton Dou has been organizing that very thing, in the name of “Bare Body Freedom”. Last year he performed (naked) an “Ultimate Freedom Concert” in the Square, accompanied by two dozen naked men, one naked woman. (Some others were partially naked.) This year he repeated the performance, but this time – as the blog of The Outdoor Co-ed Topless Pulp Fiction Appreciation Society notes – with about one dozen naked men and four or five women. So the better gender balance is, at least, a “step in the right direction”. Naturists can hope that the third time, next year, could be better still.

    It’s worth noting that in 2016 the OCTPFAS put on performances of Shakespeare’s The Tempest in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park with the all-female cast mostly naked. There have, of course, been a number of amateur and professional theatrical productions in recent decades with significant amounts of full nudity – but hardly ever so openly in a public park. Just imagine how comfortable the casts of such productions needed to become with stares from the audience. And incidentally, the women of the OCTPFAS regularly sunbathe topfree during the summer – completely legally – in New York City parks. Stares? Who cares?

  • Care home welcomes naked male model after residents request a nude drawing class
    While on the subject of nude life modeling, it’s worth mentioning that people who take art classes offering this aren’t in it for sexual thrills either. Most people will never be acclaimed artists, but artistic skill in depicting the naked human body is something that most people can develop with sufficient effort and practice. Accomplishments in such endeavors are as satisfying as achievement in any other type of artistic pursuit – from making music to making furniture. This type of satisfaction is available to people of almost any age. And the nude models who enable learning how to reproduce the human form on canvas or in clay need not be embarrassed by their role, regardless of who the students are.
    More: Old people’s home invites nude model for life drawing class

  • Art Residency: International artists live in the nude for ten days


    This type of Art Residency is a relatively brief organized program for people who are serious about developing their artistic skills. The immersive experience helps them focus on and improve different aspects of their craft. In this case, the artists themselves work as nude models. This helps artists in various ways. Probably the most important way is understanding the diverse meanings of full exposure of one’s naked body to the gaze of others. Nudity, of course, has a sexual meaning, but it’s only one among many. There’s the pleasure, which naturists know quite well, of directly experiencing the natural world instead of the artificial world of clothing. There’s the self-confidence manifest in lack of concern about others’ perception of one’s naked body. There’s the satisfaction of demonstrating the naked body’s aesthetic beauty. The better that artists appreciate these different meanings of nudity, the better they can express them in their art.

  • Do’s and Don’ts: Making Nudist Friends


    In a previous collection of recent articles we considered How to Find Other Nudists. Among the approaches mentioned was visiting nude or clothing-optional beaches. It was noted that this can be tricky, since visitors to such beaches have a wide range of experience with social nudity, and differing amounts of interest in acquiring new friends while enjoying the beach. The article here offers a number of good suggestions on how to navigate around these complicating factors. Since it was published by the official organization of Haulover Beach (Florida) users, the suggestions should be very pertinent and reliable.

  • A Naturist Girl
    Here’s a good statement on naturism by Aleah, who was raised in a naturist family – and has not seriously wavered from the enjoyment of nudity, in spite of the various trials and tribulations that afflict most people’s lives from time to time. It’s one of the first posts on a new blog: Our Natural Blog. The blog is actually the work of Aleah and her husband Sam. Both Aleah and Sam introduce themselves in earlier articles on their blog. There’s also a very good background article on Aleah and Sam on the Naked Wanderings blog.

    One of the best comments in the article explains how the fear and shame usually associated with nudity is a noxious, harmful fact about our culture (as well as most others):
    We are taught to grow up,,, to wear shoes and stop climbing trees. We are taught the concept of modesty and shame. Taught what the “ideal perfect body” is supposed to look like.

    Naturist blogs from partnered couples are a relatively new thing. It will be great for naturism if the numbers keep growing, since such blogs should be especially encouraging for women to discover that naturism need not be primarily a male thing. Other good examples of this trend are Twonaturists Blog by Hannah and Nick, and Our Naked Story, by Blake and Elle.

  • Three-course dinner where ‘clothes are optional’ is coming to Cambridgeshire this chilly winter season
    The good news for people in the Cambridge area is that the event is not until January 25, so there’s still plenty of time to sign up. Naked dining events are still uncommon in the UK – but less uncommon than in most other countries where many naturists live. Events like this don’t usually just happen spontaneously. In this case, the event has been organized by the Eastern Region of British Naturism. (The folks who also organize other good things like skinny-dipping events and festivals for young naturists.) Sadly for naturists in the U. S., we do not have national (or regional) organizations that facilitate such things. One does have to wonder, though, why whoever wrote the article described the event as “risky”. Evidently a writer for the local news outlet – who isn’t a naturist.
    More: here

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 10/8/19


Credit: British Naturism

  • Highland Wilderness Walking Weekend
    The Corrout Estate in the central Highlands of Scotland is a remote 57,000 acre estate on the edge of Rannoch Moor. In July this year a group of 18 members of British Naturism visited the Estate on a weekend to enjoy various recreational opportunities available there. Some of the group opted for less strenuous activities, such as walking around or swimming in Loch Ossian, on whose shores the hostel where the group stayed was located. Others ventured farther afield to visit remote bothies (small huts or cottages in the wilderness). The most adventuresome subgroup opted for “20-mile-plus epics taking in multiple mountain peaks”. Being naturists, the participants enjoyed their activities naked. However, the group had decided in advance to “cover up when we met members of the public only when we felt as individuals that this was the right thing to do”. The Estate does have day visitors despite its remoteness, because it’s easily reachable by train from both London and Glasgow. It was estimated that members of the group “probably interacted with more than a hundred non-Naturists”. They encountered a variety of reactions, but “received no complaints or hostile reactions”. That seems to be common for interactions between naturists and the general public in the UK, where naturist nudity is, in general, legally tolerated, at least when it’s not lewd or deliberately offensive. Most of the group were also naked for their Sunday evening meal at the train station restaurant (having obtained advance approval from the management). They even had a group picture (still naked) taken at the station after their meal.

  • Women in Naturism
    A page about British Naturism’s project to increase the participation of women in naturism was included in the 8/30/19 collection of recent articles. There’s now a brief follow-on with a few more details. The (reordered) list of what they hope to achieve is interesting:

    1. Helping more women to discover the life-affirming, exhilarating feelings of social nudity – and great community and social life that accompanies them.
    2. Creating a network of Naturist women who can keep the profile of Naturism high in the media, be advocates amongst women’s groups, organise and host events, be a contact point for newcomers, and more.
    3. Helping the men in Naturism to show the benefits to the women in their life.
    4. Improving awareness of the negative effects of societal pressure on women to conform to a particular type of body shape and appearance.
    5. Providing mutual support to help women be happier and more confident about their bodies.

    As noted previously, Item 2 may be the most actionable point. It’s crucial for women who become curious about naturism to find other women who already participate in naturist activities – to help a new person learn about the naturist opportunities that are most convenient and suitable for her. Item 3 is also important, because the naturist men that a woman knows and trusts can also provide information and encouragement. In particular, the article contains a list of suggestions for men that may help them facilitate a woman’s first experience of a naturist activity – with nudity the first time (or times) being optional.

  • Our Bodies Our Selves
    As it happens, all but two of the stories in this collection deal with naturism in Great Britain. This one is by British Naturism member Roger Coupe, who notes “In the hot summer of 2018, Naturism grew in Britain with many reports of skinny dipping, naked rambling and cycling. There has been much favourable media coverage.” He refers to experiences of another Brit, Alice O’Keeffe, who became an “evangelical” naturist that summer. (I summarized her article here.) Perhaps naturism really is experiencing a renaissance in Britain. Roger’s article describes an early morning naked walk in the countryside. The best paragraph may be this:
    I have been on this naked dawn walk many times and it has become very precious to me. I have encountered only a few humans, none of whom seemed particularly surprised by my nakedness. There was a young man in a suit, maybe on his way for a train to town and another hot day in the office. As we greeted, I thought he looked as though he rather envied my freedom. There were two workmen in red overalls, a cyclist in hi-viz with flashing lights, a few lightly-clad dog walkers. These were people very much engaged in a human world and separated from the natural world of animals with hair, wool, fur or feather that has welcomed me, the naked ape with a little body hair, boots and a hat.

  • Skinny-dipping in Cornwall’s historic miners’ pools
    It seems that the southwest coast of England is especially well-endowed with good beaches – Cornwell in particular. Some of them are even clothing-optional, at least de facto. Photojournalist Greg Martin provides impressive photographic evidence for a certain type of ocean bathing spots: tidal pools, some of which are natural, and others formed deliberately by tin miners in the area. The fact that many of the pools are in secluded locations not easily visible from a distance makes them ideal spots for au naturel bathing, especially for people who might otherwise be shy of that pleasure. One frequent visitor of the pools who Greg spoke with prefers to swim nude. She says “Getting naked outdoors might not be for everyone but swimming nude is one of those money can’t buy feelings. With tidal pools offering privacy it means you can strip off and enjoy the water in a truly immersive way. When appropriate it is the only way I choose to swim.”

  • A nudist camp near the Quad Cities has long been an open secret. Not anymore
    Here’s another good example of U. S. mainstream journalism that takes naturism seriously and treats it respectfully. (It is marred slightly by one cliche subheading: “the bare facts”.) And this is for a spot not in Florida or California, but in prairie lands near the border between Illinois and Iowa. What explains this positive treatment? It’s probably a result of new camp management that welcomes publicity. “Blue Lake recently transitioned to new management. Past owners discouraged publicity, but the new owners are intent on engaging with the public and encouraging outsiders to explore nudism.” Once again, rejecting secretiveness seems to have paid off.

  • The 3 Technologies Killing Nudism
    Rory Andrews observes that in (roughly) the past decade, U. S. society has made good progress in disposing of obsolete social prejudices and attitudes, as evidenced by such things as the expansion of LGBTQ rights, the legalization of marijuana, and the #MeToo movement. It’s true that reactionaries are still battling fiercely against these examples of social progress, but the reactionaries will eventually be defeated. Rory asks the obvious question (for naturists): “So why hasn’t this unyielding tide of revolutionary tolerance touched nudism?” His answer is that rapid advancements in three different technologies are (at least partially) to blame. The technologies are “Photoshop and Snapchat Filters”, “Cellphone Cameras”, and “Pornography”. It would take too much space to summarize the arguments – just read the article if you’re curious. Of course, you may wonder why “pornography” is considered a “technology”. It’s not at all new, but what is new is that the Internet and cell-phones have “made porn more ubiquitous and accessible than ever before.” It’s a stretch to blame naturism’s failure to become more widely accepted on technology alone. There are many other social factors at work, but entire books could be written to address them properly. However, as far as technology is concerned, Rory makes the optimistic suggestion that naturism, rather than being a victim of misuse of new technologies could be at least a partial remedy for the unfortunate side effects. “Nudism could be a radical form of exposure therapy that can teach us what real human bodies look like, strip away our social media and status facade, and step away from the oversexualized digital world that does little more than confuse us regarding what sex and bodies are actually for.” Perhaps before too long the technology of virtual reality may allow people to experiment easily with naturism in a non-threatening environment.

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 9/30/19

  • Late Summer Nights with Naturist Friends: My Humble Attempt at Writing a How-To Guide
    If you like the idea of more frequently having impromptu clothing-optional get-togethers at your home for friends, Dan Carlson has some suggestions that may make such occasions more enjoyable for everyone. But they aren’t exactly things you may not have thought of yourself. Your friends needn’t necessarily be naturists themselves, but they should be comfortable socializing with others who prefer being naked. And, if you provided enough incentives around your home, some may even try out the pleasures of social nudity. I’ve written before on the felicity of, when possible, mixing together friends who are naturists with others who are merely tolerant of nudity.

    So, what sorts of things will make such occasions better? Put a fair-sized hot tub or spa at the top of the list. Your family will thank you, even if you don’t have guests. Provide towels for everyone – for sitting on, of course, but also for drying off after the hot tub, and even wrapping up in loosely for those who’re a bit shy of full nudity. In gathering places open to the outdoors, such as on a screened porch, have a source of heat like a wood or propane stove for the colder evenings. A nice fire in an outdoor fire pit is also good (unless it’s pretty cold, raining, or snowing). If you want to be outdoors in the back yard, weather permitting (and if mosquitoes and the like aren’t a problem), you’ll want privacy from the neighbors (if you have some who aren’t naturist-friendly). The right shrubbery for your climate is the best way, but takes long-term planning if it’s not there already. However, good fences make good neighbors, and require much less time to put in place.

  • Naked On The Run: A New Craze For Racing In The Nude
    Naked running events aren’t anything “new”. A number of naturist resorts in the U. S. have held such events for years (example). That’s also true in many other countries, such as England. Naked running events that aren’t necessarily serious competitions are also frequent. Naked running has been touted as promoting body acceptance. In case you’re interested, there’s even advice on how to prepare. So naked running’s not a “craze” – even though some journalists (or headline writers) use that term to show their disdain for naked activities.

    The naked race described in the article selected here was scheduled for a beach in France. The organizers expected only a small number of participants, but were “overwhelmed” by the actual interest, and they had to limit the event to 60 runners due to the small size of the beach. If anything, the response is an indication of current enthusiasm in France for naturism and naked activities. According to the writer, “Nudism in France has become increasingly popular.” A spokesperson for the Paris Association of Naturists even claimed that “At the end of the 19th century, France became the birthplace of naturism.” Although Germans might dispute that, the Association also claims “France is the top world destination for nudists.” The response to the race might be evidence of the claim.

  • WTF?! Naked Mountain Biking Explained
    An activity that is a little more unusual is naked mountain biking. “Perusing the local paper over a morning coffee, I nearly choked when I saw the first entry in the “weekend happenings” section: a naked mountain biking group ride.” That’s how Jason introduces his article. At first, he thought the idea “seemed so uncomfortable.” But a quick Internet search turned up the testimonial “This is awesome!” Consequently, “as a journalist, mountain biker, and father of a toddler who likes to do everything naked, I figured I needed to investigate.” After the experience he decided that “This is awesome,” and reports that “everyone seemed to have a great time.” The article concludes with a dozen “Lessons Learned From Riding Bikes Naked”. Some of these are things most naturists know (use sunscreen), while the rest are intended for serious mountain bikers.

  • Reflections on a Naturist Life: La Jenny, France 2019
    Dan Carlson’s a world traveler, in addition to his professional job. He has “often cited” La Jenny “as the best naturist place in the world,” and notes that he and some or all of his family have returned “to La Jenny at least a dozen times over the ensuing years.” Nevertheless, it’s been five years since his last visit. (Previous reports are here and here.) Dan considers his first visit in 1997 with his wife “as a pivotal event in our naked lives.” He has much more to say in this post, but the key insight may be this:
    as I read so many blog posts, tweets, and reddit musings from frustrated husbands and fathers who simply can’t find a way to sell naturism to their spouses and families, I can’t help but think, “That’s because you simply can’t find a place in close proximity to where you live to replicate the everyday normal naturist experience in France… or Croatia…or Spain.” Family naturism will never feel normal when you’re in an environment where it simply isn’t… NORMAL!

    In other words, the experience in just about all naturist camps and resorts in the U. S. is very different from what it is in non-naturist places of an otherwise similar sort. Especially for families (which are rather scarce in U. S. naturist places). In France (and Spain and Croatia), however, on a vacation there’s not much difference between the experience and the people inside and outside a naturist place, except for the nudity. In other respects, most details are just about the same in either case. That probably has a lot to do with how in France naturism, in general, and family naturism, in particular, is increasingly popular (see above article on naked running) – in sharp contrast with the U. S. situation.

  • Why French Families Go Massively for Naturism
    There’s more on French family naturism in this recent post from Nick and Lins. They’ve spent much of the past summer touring naturist French places, large and small. It’s arguably true that “Ever since the beginning of naturism, France has been the number one country in the world where people like to drop their clothes.” But although France “provided so many facilities for naturists, the large majority of the naturists enjoying those facilities were foreigners.” Now, however, “things have changed a lot. During our nude road trip through France we were not only surprised by the huge amount of French naturists, but also by who they are. Lots of the French visitors we met at naturist campings around France were young couples and young families.”

    What accounts for this change? The post argues that “Naturist resorts around the country understood that the blame falls partly on them. They’ve never really tried to change the image of naturism in the media. Until today. Around the country, naturist places are opening their doors for the press.” So, many more people in France itself are learning about the pleasures of real naturism. (Something similar is beginning to happen in the U. S., but significant positive effects have yet to be seen.) And why has this change in France been especially significant for young families? The post is somewhat vague on this question. But I’d submit that the answer can be found in the post above from Dan Carlson. Namely, there are so many more “normal” recreational activities at French naturist places than there are in the U. S. counterparts. Nick and Lins give a great example of this in another recent post here. They do discuss family naturism in this May post: Family Naturism: Let’s All Just Get Naked. (All pictures in that article are from a French source.)

  • No clothes? No problem for visitors at ‘naturist’ camp in Croatia
    Croatia is a country far less well known in the U. S. than France, but it once had a thriving naturist culture. According to the article, “As an early pioneer of nudism, Croatia’s idyllic Adriatic coast has a long and storied history of people stripping down to swim and commune with their surroundings in the naturist tradition.” Late in the past century there was a significant decline in naturist facilities: “By the mid-1980s, Croatia had 34 nudist camps, leading the market along with France and Germany. Today that number is down to nine.” Much of the decline can be attributed to the very unsettled political situation around 1990, followed by stiff competition from naturist opportunities in Spain. But Croatian naturism seems to be rebounding now, with the country building on its earlier naturist culture to actively attract naturist tourists to the country. One observer opines that “Boutique naturism with small camps or apartment settlements, privately-run, that could make a new offer, could be a renaissance and a market niche.” Also, one “nudist camp in Istria, Valalta, has recently invested in apartments, beaches, and attractions for children.” I surveyed the Croatian naturist scene earlier this year here.

Review of Naked Hiking (Richard Foley, ed.)

No mystery about the subject of the book. It’s a quick but interesting read – only about 155 pages of actual text, with good color photos on roughly half the pages, plus notes on the 25 authors/photographers and credits for the various photos. There are 22 essays, 1 poem, and a Foreword. The editor, Foley, himself contributed 4 of the essays and the Foreword. He’s well qualified for the task, as he has led week-long naked walking tours in the Alps every year since 2005 – with another planned for 2020. These treks are known as Naked European Walking Tours (NEWT). More information on the tours is available at the given link.
Continue reading “Review of Naked Hiking (Richard Foley, ed.)”

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 8/01/19

  • It’s time to push back against vilification of nudity by prudes
    Body Art Vs. Protestors: Art Exhibition Or Exhibitionism?
    The 6th Annual NYC Bodypainting Day event took place on July 20 at a park in Brooklyn. This is now recognized as a fully legal event – even though it involves public nudity in an essential way. It was a popular success despite the presence of half a dozen protestors pathetically objecting to art using human bodies as a canvas. The nudity involved here is wholesome and harmless. The handful of protestors should be pitied for their obsession that nonsexual nudity like this is “harmful” to children. In the words of one protestor, “It just isn’t right for the children to have to be exposed to that in a public park.” No. What isn’t right is for the few protestors to perpetuate the fallacy that children must be “protected” from seeing nonsexual nudity.

  • Perspectives of an enthusiastic young naturist
    The Joys of Sharing Naturism with Others
    Addie, a guest blogger on Dan Carlson’s popular Meandering Naturist blog, offers two vignettes from her experience of one specific noteworthy pleasure of being a naturist: introducing others to the enjoyment of social nudity. At the end of the post, Dan provides 7 prescient pieces of advice on “How to Prepare to Share Naturist Experiences with Others”.

  • An article on the World Naked Bike Rice… in Forbes?
    Naked Bike Ride 2019: Nudity With A Message
    As the article itself says, “This year for its 16th version, the event reached 70 cities in 20 countries from Argentina and Finland to South Africa and New Zealand”. So, the WNBR has been going on since 2004. It’s not exactly news, although it may be remarkable to have persisted this long – let alone having spread to 70 cities. The article notes that the purpose is “to expose the dangers of global warming and to protest against “car culture,” the world’s dependence on oil and other non-renewable energy sources, and in defense of cyclists’ rights and other environmental related issues.” And the tone of the article is actually positive. So why is a publication targeted at big business executives and other super-wealthy people promoting an event that highlights problems they are – to a large extent – responsible for? Perhaps it’s because such people, however selfish they may be, aren’t stupid. They probably enjoy nudity frequently on their private yachts.

  • A young woman confronts objectification by celebrating nude recreation
    The Dangerous Female Body?
    It seems to many people that female naturists who are unafraid of participation in social nudity are simply allowing their bodies to be objectified. Melissa, a member of Calgary Nude Recreation, compellingly refutes that idea. She writes that “a friend of mine invited me to join her and another friend at one of Calgary Nude Recreation’s wave pool events.” And the result? “Nothing bad happened! No one made me feel uncomfortable, commented on my body, or acted as if they couldn’t control themselves around my naked female form.” In fact, she “felt less self-conscious while nude then I did with clothes on!” Far from feeling objectified, “Social nudity allowed me to feel less like an object and more like a person.” So she resolved “not [to] let someone else define my body’s intent or alienate me from my bodily autonomy ever again.”

  • Sexual objectification is something all naturists should push back against
    Stop the Sexual Objectification!!
    The controversy focuses on the problem that too many commenters on Get Naked Australia make sexually objectifying remarks on certain images of young women. As the site curator says,

    Just because there is a young, “attractive” body on this page, does not mean she’s putting herself out there to be objectified. She is not asking for it! Maybe, she, like most other good natured people on this site, just enjoyed her skinny dip and wanted to share it with others in the hope they do the same? Maybe she doesn’t want to see your “great sexy ass” comments and “eggplant” emoji’s. Maybe she just wants to join in on the freedom that is being naked in nature? Just because she’s “attractive” does that mean she’s not allowed?

    Since this topic seems to require a lot more attention, I’ve put further remarks here: Controversies over Get Naked Australia