Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 1/25/20

  1. Forget ‘lewd behaviour’ – is being naked around your own kids good for them?
    The answer: “Probably it is!” To be more specific, according to the article, “Seeing a parent naked can help children learn what real bodies look like and better understand consent and boundaries.” An important part of every child’s education should be the “facts of life”.  And the best way to do that properly should assume that children will understand best if they’ve often seen others – of differing ages and sexes – in the family naked. That should ensure they know the names (and colloquial terms) for important body parts, and realize that there’s nothing “wrong” or “nasty” about a naked body – even though normal bodies can vary greatly in appearance. In particular, how a naked body looks shouldn’t be a source of shame or embarrassment for anyone.

    Of course, it’s also important to point out that “boundaries” should be respected, and that there are many people who are sensitive or even embarrassed about their bodies. In fact, in the presence of nudity, it’s straightforward to explain exactly what boundaries should be observed and when consent is necessary.

    This issue is now front and center because of a stupid decision by a local judge in Utah – one of the most backward, prudish states in the U. S. It was held that a mother could be prosecuted under an “indecency” law simply because, in their own home, her pre-teen sons happened to see her uncovered breasts. The mother, quite reasonably, believed it was good for her sons to see nonsexual partial female nudity. So, quite absurdly, naturism in a private home could be prosecuted as a crime, even if the only non-adult children present are family members – at least in Utah.

    One of the stupid things about the judge’s decision was agreeing with prosecutors that “lewdness is commonly understood to include women’s breasts in American society”. That’s possibly true in a theocratic state like Utah, which is an extreme case. Yet in states that are more representative of the country as a whole, like New York, simple exposure of female breasts – even in public, let alone in private – isn’t illegal. During the summer in NYC many women go topfree in Central Park, Times Square, and elsewhere. The case in Utah doesn’t even involve full nudity – which would apply equally to men and women. Was the fact that there were children involved relevant? According to this report, there were three kids – ages 9 through 13 at the time. How many boys of that age haven’t seen bare female breasts, at least in pictures, and have been hurt in any way if they have?

    To add to the absurdity of this judicial decision, last September a Federal Circuit Court of Appeals for the 10th district (which includes Utah), struck down a Colorado city’s ban on women exposing their breasts, even in public. And many states don’t consider even full nudity to be “lewd” if the behavior isn’t intended to offend others. So much for the Utah judge’s opinion about how commonly female toplessness is understood to be “lewd”.

    The biggest obstacle to the growth of naturism is the passing along from parents to children at a very early age the ridiculous idea that almost all nudity is inherently “wrong”, “indecent”, “lewd”, or “obscene”. And that nonsense is based on the false belief that seeing nonsexual adult nudity is “harmful” to children – the exact opposite of the truth. Naturists need to strongly oppose this nonsense. In order for naturism and nonsexual nudity to continue becoming socially acceptable, they need to be recognized as perfectly normal and harmless choices for individuals and families. Of course, children shouldn’t be forced to be naked if it’s uncomfortable for them. The best way for nudity to become normalized is for parents, from the beginning, to make clear that nonsexual nudity by family members in their home is always acceptable, at least as long as anyone who might be uncomfortable with nudity isn’t present.

    In this article there is more about the judge’s reasoning. It’s basically that the Utah law is about “lewdness” in front of children, which applies to both men and women. The law, however, also requires either “intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desires” or knowing that the behavior would cause “affront or alarm”. Neither of those conditions seems to apply in the current case, so the defendant should be acquitted at trial – especially considering the harshness of the possible penalties. However, this interpretation is still very threatening for naturists, as all the criteria are highly subjective – especially the idea that exposed female breasts are inherently “lewd”, even though male breasts aren’t. That latter point was key to the Colorado decision that such laws allowed unconstitutional discrimination against women.

    The state of Utah is highly dependent on tourism. But there’s hardly any reason to go there, except for the spectacular desert scenery. Everyone – not only naturists – ought to boycott Utah because of its laws that flout gender equality.

  2. Call for naked art classes to benefit children in UK schools


    This article goes into more detail why it should be considered healthy for children to observe naked bodies – both male and female. It should be clear that drawing classes using live naked models are a fine way to normalize nudity and foster acceptance of it, while also helping youngsters develop their artistic skills and aesthetic senses.

    The idea is that this will help “improve body image issues caused by social media”.
    Artists want models to disrobe for young people and display the unfiltered human form, counteracting distortions of shape, size, and normality young people receive online.

    Some of the points made in favor of the proposal include:

    • Sketching naked men and women should be part of a balanced curriculum, and primary school students are more open to nudity than adults made prudish by socially ingrained taboos or judgemental by presumptions about what a body should look like.
    • Life drawing can educate children in bodily realities before they are influenced by the “nonsense we see on social media”.
    • Children become more accepting of what they are looking at – especially when concentrating on accurately reproducing what they see – whether the bodies are old, overweight, or hairy.
    • When somebody appears naked before others they are just human beings. That counteracts prejudices as to how a body should look. It’s great for body positivity and acceptance.
    • The naked human form is not inherently sexual, and life drawing is mistakenly seen as lewd.
    • Children can handle drawing nudes without hang-ups – unless they’ve already been affected by cultural prejudices, and early introduction to nudity can offset acquired prejudices.


    These points are strikingly similar to arguments in favor of naturism itself. In opposition to the proposal, this article, contains many comments such as: “children will ‘sneer and giggle’ at naked bodies at a young age”; children 9 years old “have no contemplation yet on body image”; “Put a naked man and woman in front of a class they would be laughing their heads off. You only have to mention a body part and they’re off”. People who say such things should just ask themselves where those reactions come from. They might then realize it’s due to the corrupting influences children have already been exposed to from prejudiced older children and adults – who themselves acquired the attitudes in the same way. Positive experiences of nudity – like seeing nudity in a child’s own family or drawing nude models – are needed to better inform opinions of the human body.

    More: Life Drawing for Schools,
    Advocates have a suggestion on how to use art classes to promote body positivity

  3. 5 Naturist YouTube Channels You Really Want to Follow in 2020


    Yes, YouTube does actually allow some nudity now in uploaded material. But, of course, it’s also classified as “Age-restricted video (based on Community Guidelines)”. This is even though most of the material (at least what would be of interest to naturists) is non-sexual. And a lot of it is self-censored in various ways besides. The glaring problem here is that young people – at least of school age – are exactly the audience that should be able to view non-sexual nudity in order to form a much healthier attitude towards it. Which is the main point of the preceding articles here. The whole reason for such stupid guidelines is that parents insist on it, because they themselves are victims of our society’s egregious misunderstanding of nudity. The nonsense is passed from generation to generation like an inherited disease.

    Naturists certainly will want to check out the video channels recommended in this article. One problem for English speakers, however, is that three of the five channels are mainly or entirely in other languages (French, Spanish, and Portuguese). Even so, naturists who are able to travel far from home can glean much about opportunities in other countries in spite of the language barrier. And people who already enjoy social nudity might want to recommend the videos to their open-minded relatives and friends who’d be interested in learning more about naturism – in the privacy of their own homes. For better or worse, people don’t read much these days and are far more likely to absorb information from visual media.

    There are two other options to check out. Vimeo, which is a competitor of YouTube, is actually more welcoming of naturist material. And you can do searches in both YouTube and Vimeo for topics of naturist interest, such as “body painting”, “nude art”, and “naturist information”. In particular, many naturist/nudist resorts offer videos that can give you a good idea of what type of facilities and activities the resort has to offer. A number of national naturist organizations have similar information on what’s available in their country.

  4. 21 Nude Festivals and Nudist Events in 2020


    The same source that provides the recommended YouTube channels also offers information on 21 naturist-friendly events around the world. Anyone who’s fortunate enough to have sufficient time and financial wherewithal could spend most of the year attending one event after another. By my count only six of the events are exclusively in North America (including Mexico and Canada). Three more are in Great Britain – which is impressive, and fortunate for those who reside there. Five of the rest that occur in just one place are in Europe, and there’s one each from South America, Australia, New Zealand, and Asia. There are also three that are celebrated in many places around the globe – such as World Naked Bike Rides, World Naked Gardening Day, and International Nude Day.

    However, the list is far from exhaustive. In the U. S., for example, both national organizations have several “gatherings” and meetings around the country. Large nudist resorts have events such as clothing-optional music festivals, 5K and 10K naked runs, other sporting events (e. g. volleyball), and so on. For naturists whose main experience is with home or beach nudity, it could be a very good idea to check out nearby naturist/nudist resorts for special events where non-members and first-timers are especially welcome.

  5. Watch these naked skiers get waist deep in Canadian powder


    This isn’t a “real” event, but rather a segment of a promotional movie called “Vallhalla”, which was created for Dynafit (a sportswear company), Powder Magazine (for skiers), and Whitewater Ski Resort (in British Columbia, Canada). The skiers are all professional athletes – which should be obvious from the video. All of them – male and female – are naked in this clip. It’s not clear whether the nudity was integral to the storyline or was mainly to get attention. Perhaps it’s both. In any case, the visuals are very impressive. The clip is also available on YouTube and Vimeo.

    One has to admire the fortitude, as well as the skill, of those appearing in the nude scenes, given that the outdoor temperatures were in the 20s (°F). This item is not actually “recent”, having been out for over 5 years. However, somehow it showed up in a news feed, and it certainly illustrates how nudity can be effectively normalized, albeit not for naturist purposes. It might be described by the current buzzphrase “cultural appropriation” – meaning something appropriated by members of a dominant culture from a minority culture. But it’s difficult in this case to see how this couldn’t confer some acceptability on nonsexual nudity, even if unintentionally. Skiers, of course, love the sport for the thrills, so it’s not surprising that some actually do ski naked occasionally.

    More: These pro skiers took to the hills naked for their latest shoot

  6. St. Lucie County could be a step closer to having official nude beach


    St. Lucie County is on the southeast coast of Florida. Its largest city, Fort Pierce, is about 130 miles north of Miami. That’s more than a 2-hour drive to Miami’s well-known Haulover clothing-optional beach. The clothing-optional beaches in the Canaveral National Seashore are about the same distance to the north. So naturists near Fort Pierce understandably want a more convenient “official” clothing-optional beach of their own. (The numerous naturist resorts of Pasco County are mostly even farther away, and aren’t adjacent to saltwater beaches.) The chances now seem pretty good that Fort Pierce naturists will be getting their own official nude beach: Blind Creek Beach. According to a local naturist, there’s been nudity on it for at least 50 years. It seems that the local county commissioners consider having an official nude beach to be a desirable tourist attraction, so there’s general local support for the idea. The main hindrance in the past hasn’t been local opposition but simply funding for needed sanitation facilities.

Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 1/19/20

  1. Dating & Nudism
    Isn’t this something that most naturists who aren’t in a long-term relationship wonder about? The conventional wisdom is that the best way for a naturist to find a compatible date is not to search for someone who’s already a naturist. Why? Partly because of the well-known gender imbalance problem, if for no other reason. In particular, a naturist man would be doing naturism itself a favor by finding a dating partner who’s not already a naturist and persuading her of the many healthy and wholesome features of social nudity. (Just for this point, assume heterosexual dating.)

    The article cited is from the new Our Natural Blog of Sam and Aleah. (Previously referenced in this post.) The very first point made there is to focus on people outside the naturist community – because otherwise the task “is like looking for a needle in a haystack. It would severely limit your dating pool and probably end up working against your dating success.” A corollary of this point is that if you want to find a compatible date, you’ll have to be able to make an honest and persuasive argument for the benefits and reasonableness of naturism. So you’d best have a fair amount of naturist experience yourself in order to be considered a knowledgeable source of information.

    The next point is to focus strongly on compatibility. You need to find a person who’s not only open-minded enough to seriously consider naturism, but also shares a variety of interests with you that have little to do with naturism. For example: activities and hobbies, philosophy of life, previous experiences, and life goals. Even if your ultimate objective isn’t a long-term relationship, you want whatever you do together to be enjoyable for both of you. There’s a lot of additional great advice in the article – so just go read it if you’re seriously interested in naturist dating.

    Here’s another fine article about naturist dating on the Meandering Naturist blog from about a year ago

  2. Why is this artist photographing random naked people in random spots on the streets of Vienna?


    Martin Gabriel Pavel (MGP) is a Czech photographer who has been doing a series of photos, called “Daily Portraits”, since 2011. All portraits are of models who are naked or semi-naked volunteers, and who pose at a wide variety of urban locations in Austria and other nearby countries. (The headline is misleading, since MGP doesn’t work only in Vienna.) The portraits are eventually collected into books, which are sold to support MGP’s work. The images are quirky and sometimes surrealistic instead of straightforward personal portraits – in other words, “artistic”. Viewers are left to make their own interpretations, but in general the images raise questions like “What is the deeper meaning, if any, of this naked person in this particular place?” And “What is the subject feeling about the experience?”

    When asked by the interviewer to explain the “concept” of the series MGP is currently working on, he says “Each series has a different concept. In the last series in Berlin, 381 people were photographed naked, and those who were photographed, also took photos of other strangers. For example, I photographed Elle in her apartment, then I gave her my camera and she went and photographed another stranger in his apartment, and so on.” So, in part, the work is about random people who are willing to be photographed naked and possibly to then photograph others, also naked. Inevitably, too, the work is about nakedness itself. MGP says, further, “The aim of this series is to capture a feeling, the atmosphere of the city through pictures of the naked body.”

    All subjects, of course, gave consent, and often enjoyed the experience enough to tell friends about it and encourage them to volunteer also. MGP says that “Most of my models have never posed naked before. They feel empowered after the experience.” It seems unlikely that this sort of work could be done in the U. S. – or probably in most other countries besides where MGP works. Not only have many people without previous experience posing naked volunteered, but it seems that local police and the general public very seldom object to the project. Unlike the work of Spencer Tunick – most of whose subjects are simply anonymous “bodies” – MGP’s subjects are (mostly) distinct, identifiable people. One wonders whether nudity is already more “normalized” in the places where MGP works. Certainly, the books that are produced as a result are a great example of “normalizing nudity”.

    Some useful links for MGP: home page, Twitter account, Instagram account, Daily Portrait site, book sales.

  3. Alton Towers hotel is being taken over by nudists for a clothing-free weekend for families
    Unless you’re British, this is a bigger deal than it might seem. According to Wikipedia, “Alton Towers Resort is an amusement park in Staffordshire, England, near the village of Alton, which … incorporates a theme park, water park, spa, mini golf and hotel complex.” So it’s not just another water park, several of which in the UK occasionally host naturist groups for private swims. According to the resort itself, it’s “the UK’s biggest Theme Park”. In other words, much more like Disneyland, and in fact it offers more: a water park, spa, and mini-golf.

    Even though the event isn’t scheduled until the weekend of November 20-22, it’s received coverage from a number of UK news outlets (links below). Most importantly, it has been organized by British Naturism – the UK’s official naturist organization. Nudity’s allowed 24/7 in the waterpark and hotel areas. (Because of the season, most outdoor facilities won’t be open.) The place will be closed to the general public (although presumably anyone can attend if they pay the admission, aren’t bothered by nudity, and belong to or join BN or INF). Accommodations for two nights and use of facilities are priced at £325 (about US$423) for a family of four. And children of all ages are welcome. This will actually be the 14th year for the event. More than 400 naturists are expected to attend. (The limit’s probably dictated by the number of hotel rooms available.)

    Here’s the official announcement and reservation page. Can anyone among U. S. naturists imagine either (or both) of the U. S. naturist organizations taking over even part of a Disney property for a weekend?

    More: here, here, here, here, here, here

  4. BBC to screen two hours of ‘slow TV’ cameras panning around naked bodies of life drawing models… in the hope that viewers will sketch them at home
    If you’re like most people in the U. S., outside of major urban areas or far from large universities, it can be quite difficult or impossible to find places where you can sketch or paint naked life models. The same is true (possibly to a lesser extent) in other modern countries. But now in the UK the BBC has a solution. According to the article,
    Budding artists will be given a lesson in life drawing from the comfort of their own home in a two-hour special on BBC Four. Life Drawing Live, an interactive class where viewers can draw the nude models on their screen, will make television history on highbrow channel BBC Four. Billed as an art lesson for the whole country, the special could be the first of many interactive cultural programmes. The audience will be asked to draw along from their living rooms as the class is led by award-winning artists Daphne Todd and Lachlan Goudie.

    The BBC cameras will pan slowly around the room so that viewers have time to quickly sketch models. However, it’s unclear whether this will be repeated regularly instead of being a one-off event. And the article doesn’t say when the broadcast will occur, except “early” in 2020. Anyone outside of the UK, of course, is still SOL. In any case, people anywhere can go to YouTube or Vimeo, search on “life drawing” or “life modeling” and come up with videos that offer pretty much what BBC plans to do. Better still, you can watch the videos as many times as you need to improve your drawing skills. Perhaps the BBC thing is more of an attention-grabbing stunt. But at least the BBC will offer something that many people would otherwise not even think of trying.

  5. What is Naked Therapy?
    The article answers that question:
    Naked therapy is a form of mental health treatment that isn’t sexual in nature. It helps people become more comfortable with their bodies. It began in the 1930s when Howard Warren, who is a Princeton psychologist, and at the time was president of the American Psychological Association, spent a week’s time at a nudist camp in Germany. After that, he wrote a paper called “Social Nudism and the Body Taboo.” Warren discovered that being naked made people feel more comfortable with themselves; less self-conscious.

    The article’s about body acceptance. It’s actually targeted at men, and published on a men’s site, even though body acceptances is more often considered a women’s issue. Of course, most naturists have already realized that being naked socially is quite enjoyable, as well as providing emotional and psychological benefits. “Therapy” means participating in an organized group where people are naked and explicitly discuss body acceptance issues under the guidance of a trained professional. In other words, it’s a way for men (and women) who aren’t already used to social nudity to discover and experience some of its psychological benefits. A naturist might want to investigate naked therapy to recommend to friends and relatives who have body acceptance issues.

    Naked therapy was a popular thing back in the 1960s and 70s, although it was sometimes associated with open sexuality, drug/psychedelic use, and other counter-cultural fads of the time. As this earlier article explains, naked therapy is much less used now, although it can be experienced with some online sources. Truthfully, however, for people whose body issues aren’t too severe, visiting a good naturist club or resort a few times – or just being naked often at home – is simpler and cheaper. But for more serious issues, a professional counselor or therapist may be better.

  6. How to Cover Nudists the Wrong Way
    Here’s another plea on Matthew McDermott’s blog for mainstream journalists to write intelligently about naturism. I’ve already cited here an earlier article by Matthew about this. Any naturist who interacts with journalists needs to understand the biases and habits that journalists bring with them. At the end of the new article are four key suggestions that naturists and their clubs should keep firmly in mind.

    Consider some examples of the language some journalists use to slyly disparage naturists and naturism – from this article about the Alton Towers event described above. The headline reads “Alton Towers water park set to be overrun by nudists for a ‘weekend of fun'”. It says the park will be “overrun” – like a plague of locusts? – by naturists. And notice the use of scare quotes at the end. The first sentence uses “descend on” instead of “overrun” – but implies the same comparison to locusts. Most of the remainder of the article is straight from the British Naturism announcement. However, the last four sentences repeat the often alleged but never verified charges by a “paedophile hunter” of the supposed dangers tp children of such events. So the writers continue to gratuitously repeat a nonexistent link between naturism and pedophilia. Also questionable is continuing to write “nudists” instead of “naturists” – where the latter term is now more common in Europe, and in England itself.