Recent articles on nudity and naturism, October 16-31, 2020

  1. Avid gardeners pot, prune and bare all for National Nude Gardening Day

    World Naked Gardening Day is the first Saturday in May – provided you’re north of the Equator. But early in November is a better time for New Zealanders and Australians.

    The president of the New Zealand Naturist Federation is quoted in the article making a very important point: “This particular day is more for people who aren’t naturists to get involved and give it a go.” In other words, having a “naked gardening day” isn’t so much aimed at experienced naturists as people in the general public. After all, naturists will do their gardening naked anyway, if possible. But having a special day is a way to make the general public more aware of what naturism is and what naturists actually do.

    Since the first WNGD over 15 years ago, many people who’ve read about it or noticed it mentioned in social media may have decided to give naked gardening a try themselves at some convenient time, not just on WNGD – at least if they have a gardening area that’s sufficiently private. People who do that often realize that the experience is quite enjoyable. They may continue gardening naked simply to be able to enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. But they may also be motivated to learn more about naturism and to seek out more traditional naturist activities – even if they don’t actually consider themselves “naturists”.

    The bottom line here is that naked gardening can be, for some, a “gateway drug” to serious involvement in naturism. And it’s not the only such “drug”. A number of things, such as practicing naked yoga, naked hiking, or simply starting to sleep naked, can have the same effect.

  2. 6 Things You Can Do To Normalize Naturism Right Now

    Since you’re reading this, chances are you’re into naturism, or at least interested in it. If you are a naturist, you quite likely want your preference to be accepted by people who’re important to you. In short, you want it to be normalized – at least with respect to yourself. Ideally, you could be naked when you wanted to be, and others you know wouldn’t notice anything “unusual”.

    Of course, for most that’s not the “real world”. But it should be, so isn’t it worth some effort to change that? The article here lists 6 ways to help nudity become considered a normal, acceptable choice. The most important point is in the conclusion: “The number one way to normalize nudism is to talk about it.” That means you shouldn’t remain secretive about your enjoyment of nudity. All the rest depends on overcoming the secrecy.

    The 6 points, with explanations, are:

    1. Educate your kids on naturism
    2. Squash any myths and misconceptions
    3. Invite friends to try nudism
    4. Spread the word about the benefits of nudism
    5. Embrace your nudist lifestyle
    6. Use your knowledge for the greater good


    I’d make a few comments on these points. In general, keep it simple by treating the terms “naturism” and “nudism” as interchangeable, without trying to explain why some might prefer one term over the other.

    Here are a few more specifics, in the same order:

    1. Unless family nudity has been common since your children were very young, this will be difficult. They’ll probably already have picked up negative attitudes towards nudity from peers and others. Expect that teaching them differently will become increasingly difficult as they get older. Here’s an article with excellent advice.
    2. Debunking the myths is the first point that should be addressed. The misconceptions about naturism are many and widespread. Give some thought to how you would refute any of the myths, based on your own experiences with naturism.
    3. Before inviting friends to try naturism, you’ll first have to debunk the misconceptions, explain the benefits, and have them accept that nudity is now “normal” for you, in whatever way suits you best.
    4. Naturism has many different benefits for physical health, general psychological well-being, and other practical benefits. The benefits are discussed extensively in naturist blogs and naturist organization Web sites. Do the research, and make your own list. Try to emphasize particular benefits depending on who you’re talking with.
    5. Embracing naturism as a “lifestyle” means being naked whenever that’s practical and comfortable for you. That’s the best way to persuade others you value the lifestyle.
    6. This will take commitment on your part. It means advocating for naturism among your friends and relatives, using social media to explain and promote naturism, and maybe even starting your own local naturist group.

  3. Mother and daughter are photographed naked, facing ruined sites of China

    Finding nudity used for artistic purposes is surprising in an authoritarian and rigidly conformist Asian society like China. Genuinely good art is not only esthetically pleasing (usually), but often communicates ideas, emotions, and physical sensations as well. When the art is visual and also involves nudity it not only attracts attention to itself, but also affords the viewer a vicarious experience of the scene in the naked flesh. According to the article, “the project intends to discuss the irresistible force of time with an unexpected, raw, yet beautiful approach.”

  4. The Aspie and the Nudie

    If you don’t suspect you may be on the “Asperger’s spectrum” or know someone who could be, you might not find this long post of much interest. However, it deals with the intersection of naturism and Asperger’s. There’s one trait that is often shared. According to one quote, “Aspies are not influenced by peer pressure or social "norms". Their independent thinking resists and challenges conformity and convention.”

    It’s tough being a naturist without that trait, no? This isn’t to say there’s anything aberrant about it. Questioning social “norms” is quite healthy, because many don’t exist for good reasons, but only due to arbitrary, haphazard customs. A prime example, especially if you live in an excessively conformist society, is the compulsive “need” to wear clothes when nudity would be more comfortable.

  5. ‘When you do put your clothes back on, you’re changed’: The nudists of Killiney


    It’s really quite striking – astonishing, actually – to see how differently naturism is treated by legacy media (such as newspapers) in the U. S. when compared to corresponding media in some countries of Europe that are farther along in shedding antiquated attitudes towards nudity. That includes Ireland, which used to be dominated by backward-looking institutions like the Catholic Church. As has been reported in this blog, naturism has recently become surprisingly popular in Ireland, much as in the UK.

    In the article here, a reporter interviews naturists enjoying a class, fully naked, in Qigong on a public Irish beach. Instead of expressing bewildered amazement that normal people would do something like that, the reporter allows the interviewees to describe their feelings and motivations in their own words and at some length.

    One perception that comes across is how natural and unexceptionable it can be to engage in an activity like a Qigong class while wearing nothing in a public place with others. One interviewee, artist Ciara Boud, “doesn’t mind being referred to as a naturist, she just sees herself as someone who chooses to ‘wear or not wear what she wants to’.” Ciara remarked further:
    Bodies are quite boring, … Once they’ve been out on display for a little while, you’re like, ‘that’s a t*t and that’s an ass’, and nobody cares and nobody’s looking, and nobody is even thinking of your body in a broken down structure of ‘those are the sexual bits and those are not’.

  6. Australian veterinary student calendars


    Selling calendars that feature (carefully limited) nudity to fund some worthy cause has been going on for over 20 years – perhaps most famously with the “Calendar Girls” of the Women’s Institutes. The story of that effort was even made into a play and a movie. The same idea has also been used by athletic teams in colleges and universities, especially in the UK – too many to note separately.

    It’s also been a popular idea in Australia, as in the present example. In this case, students of the University of Sydney’s Doctor of Veterinary Medicine school have been producing such calendars annually in “a decade-long, charitable tradition”. Although the 2021 calendar is no longer available, the calendar’s website, called bumsforthebush, has pictures and a video documenting the project.


    The tradition has been carried on by students at other veterinary schools in Australia, notably at North Queensland’s James Cook University – reported here, here, and here. The website for this effort is called Vets Uncovered and there are some YouTube videos.

    One has to wonder: Why hasn’t this idea spread to vet schools in the U. S.? (But it’s probably because the U. S. is decades behind in appreciating the cultural value of non-sexual nudity.)

  7. Naked Travel Possibilities

    The idea of recommending vacation places for women to enjoy naked is rather novel, so here’s another post from gogirlfriend.com. But it’s disappointing. This one states “We’ve found 3 places here in the US where you can try naked travel on for size. If you’re a first-timer, go with your girlfriends or your partner – not a group of couples. And remember, taking your clothes off is the hardest part – it gets simpler and more fun after that.” While that’s good advice for newbies, the suggestions are pretty weak. Burning Man isn’t planned for 2021, and even World Naked Bike Rides will be few and far between. The only safe bet of the three is Black’s Beach just north of San Diego. A quality naturist resort such as Laguna del Sol in California or one of several possibilities in Florida would probably be better options.

Why are calendars featuring naked people such a fad in Britain?

It’s been a new year for a few weeks now, so of course people have needed new calendars for their walls. Most opt for calendars with mountains or other natural scenery, or cute cats and dogs. But in merrie olde England there appears to be a not insignificant market for calendars featuring naked – usually young – people of both sexes.

These are not, mind you, the salacious pin-up or Pirelli sort of calendars of yore. Even Pirelli has gone in the direction of high “art”, so far from the style that featured look-alikes of Marilyn Monroe or Brigitte Bardot (who was born in 1934 and is still alive, by the way).

And don’t get the wrong idea. The new crop of “nude calendars” is so, so positively non-sexual. Every single (carefully gender-balanced) person in these calendars somehow contrives to prevent so much as a single penis or female nipple from being visible, in spite of almost everyone being stark naked (except, perhaps, for shoes or fancy boots of some sort or other). In compensation, bare butts abound. To use the curiously self-contradictory phrase that often crops up in stories about the phenomenon, everyone tries carefully “cover” or “preserve” their “modesty”. (The British have such a way with words.)

According to the stories, nearly everyone who modeled for the calendar pictures greatly enjoyed the experience. However, many are said to have been “extremely nervous” with the idea initially. Sadly, purchasers of these calendars aren’t permitted to see quite as much as the models and photographers themselves saw.

All this is quite in keeping with the overall purpose that buyers of these calendars are encouraged to assume – namely, to benefit some worthy charity or other. The beneficiary may be some genuinely deserving social cause – or, frequently, the alma mater or sports team of the calendar models.

This sort of thing isn’t new and original at all, of course. There’s even a Wikipedia article on the nude calendar topic. The article notes that

The first nude charity calendar was made by a group of middle aged Englishwomen, members of a local branch of the Women’s Institute, who were posing nude to raise funds for Leukaemia Research. The calendar was released in 1999, and became an international sensation, and also inspired the movie Calendar Girls.

The article also provides a useful list of some of the more noteworthy examples of the genre.

So 2019 is the 20th anniversary of this phenomenon. Fittingly, there has been a bumper crop of offerings to commemorate the original event. You’ll note that all of them are from England or Australia – remnants of Britain’s tattered Empire. Curiously, although in the past there have been a few examples from Canada and the U. S., I haven’t seen a single one this time. One hesitates to speculate on what might be the reason for this.

Here are stories I’ve come across on the 2019 calendars. No doubt some have been missed. I’ve tried to provide suitable links, in case you’re interested in purchasing any of these.

University of Bristol

The nude calendar story that seems to have managed to garner the most, um, coverage is from the University of Bristol.

To order the calendar, check here

Saucy students strip off for Bristol University naked Christmas calendar

THESE cheeky students have ditched their studying to strip off for their 2019 charity calendar.

Incredible pictures show students from 12 societies at the University of Bristol snapped in the nude. …

The calendar was organised by the University of Bristol’s Raising and Giving (RAG) society with proceeds going to three local charities.

“Incredible”? Only, I suppose, to Brits who’ve been asleep for the past 20 years. Use of such language, along with capitalization and words like “saucy”, “cheeky”, “risqué”, “raunchy”, “naughty”, “racy” is a good clue that the story is from one of Britain’s tabloids popular with the lower classes, The Sun in this case. Another phrase these tabloid articles use a lot is “bare all”. In fact, that’s rather inaccurate. The folks who pose for these things go to fairly absurd lengths not to show all that they’ve got.

Many photos are included in the story. They’re somewhat imaginative, perhaps a little cheesy – but hardly “raunchy”, “risqué”, or even “saucy”.

Bristol bares all! Brave university students from 12 different societies strip naked for a VERY risque charity calendar

This story’s from the Daily Mail, a more conventional newspaper, albeit one still tabloidish. More capitalization, plus the titillating “risqué” and “bares all”. (Not literally “all”, unfortunately.)

University students strip naked for raunchy charity calendar

This is from the Mirror, another UK tabloid. Readers are informed that “the students have covered their modesty with relevant society objects, such as frisbees and books” – to caution that the pictures might be considered NSFW. After all, they’re “raunchy” (hardly).

Why naked people were ‘rock climbing’ in Bristol’s Avon Gorge

This, from BristolLive, website of the Bristol Post newspaper, gives some interesting backstory related to the calendar project. The relevance, however, isn’t entirely evident.

Cambridge University

Cambridge University students strip off for a VERY daring naked charity calendar – featuring dancers doing the splits and lacrosse players baring all in the library

To order the calendar, check here

The Daily Mail, which seems especially fond of the topic, informs us that “The daring [ed: not] photographs feature students from the university’s netball, swimming and lacrosse teams using strategically placed props to preserve their modesty.” So again there’s the models’ concern to about their “modesty”, along with the usual retinue of adjectives. (Such as “racy”.)

This one appears to be the top choice among the current crop of calendars, as its photography is imaginative and of high quality. After all, Cambridge U. is a pretty classy place. For example:

But one wonders how normal it is for otherwise naked women to walk around barefoot with athletic shoes modestly covering their breasts:

I bet you never saw that very often at your college. It’s a crazy world now.

Royal Veterinary College, London

Student vets strip naked for a VERY cheeky charity calendar – and use rabbits, sheep and CHICKENS to cover their modesty

Although the Royal Veterinary College doesn’t play in the same league as Cambridge U., their calendar might deserve a credible second place in the 2019 nude calendar play-offs. To be sure, instead of running shoes they employ “rabbits, sheep, and CHICKENS to cover their modesty”. (Couldn’t they find any “RABBITS” or “SHEEP”?)

And, according to the Daily Mail (again), they also sometimes “don scarves and wellington boots”. At least they wear the boots on their feet instead of their breasts. Seems much more normal. (Or is it considered “VERY cheeky”. Leave anything “chic” to the Cantabrigians. The latter do have “dons” too, however.)

Naughty vets cover private parts with CHICKENS as they strip for photoshoot

The Daily Star is yet another British tabloid for the lower classes. The article has nothing much to add except for additional adjectives like “naughty”. But it does say that “The Vets In Action calendar is priced at £10 and is available from eBay under the title RVC 2019 Naked Calendar.”

Iwade, Kent

Entire Kent VILLAGE strips off for a saucy advent calendar to raise money for charity – and they say it’s ‘brought the community together’

According to the Daily Mail (again!), even common village folks who never matriculated at so much as a veterinary college can also do nude charity calendars.

An entire Kent village has stripped off for a racy festive calendar in a bid to raise money for charity.

Almost every business in Iwade, Sittinghbourne signed up to take part, with dozens of locals baring all, either at work or enjoying their favourite pastimes.

Doubtlessly, too, the project really did bring the community together. Nudity has a way of doing that. (And we can assume this wasn’t meant in reference to the kind of favorite pastime usually associated with nudity.)

What sort of charities will this calendar assist? Well, for one we’re told that some “money will go towards a new toilet block at the local church.” Does that get a lot of use in response to the pastor’s sermons? The article doesn’t say.

In any case, from the pictures it’s apparent that the villagers also wear boots, high heels, or running shoes (as appropriate in their various callings) whilst naked. And some use hats, sacks of manure, or chainsaws to cover their modesty.

To order the calendar, check the calendar website or its Facebook page.

Wales

Skinny Dipping Charity Calendar

Wales is favored with a considerable amount of sea coast, so the Welsh calendar has a very naturist theme: skinny dipping. (It’s not the sunny Mediterranean, but whatever.) Appropriately enough, the report here is courtesy of British Naturism.

The natatory theme is very convenient, as being in water makes it easy for the doughty models to preserve their modesty. Regrettably, on the calendar website we find this plea: “Please buy a copy or 3 otherwise we will feel ugly & undervalued – the shame will demoralise us & we will lose our sense of purpose. Roughly translating as – we will feel foolish.” Hopefully that’s a tongue-in-cheek appeal to buy lots of calendars, rather than an expression of ambivalence towards the idea of skinny dipping.

Dean Newlyn Young Farmers

Dean Newlyn Young Farmers launch nude calendar

This is our only example of a 2019 nude calendar that’s not from Shakespeare’s sceptered isle – but instead from a former British colony on the other side of the globe. Yes, Australia, the place that the throne of kings wrested from its inhabitants to develop as a penal colony. The two countries even now have more in common than a language – nude charity calendars, specifically.

The organization behind the calendar is called The Naked Farmer. Its young founder, Ben, was recently inspired to utilize nudity as a way to dramatize the mental health problems of farmers. He writes that his idea

could actually support people in the agricultural industry who suffer from mental health issues. Statistics prove that the suicide rate amongst farmers is almost double than any other industry and I’m passionate about changing these stats.

Naturally, as a member of his generation, Ben implemented his idea by starting an Instagram account – that features naked young farm folks (both male and female) engaged in many activities, including farm work. A nude charity calendar was a very natural byproduct of that initiative.

Because it’s Instagram, there’s no revealing frontal nudity, but the photos look more authentic and less contrived than what’s found in most other calendars. Operating heavy farm equipment naked, for example. They could almost make a bored young city dweller want to give up on the Ubers and lattes and look for opportunities to work naked on a farm in Australia.

This could – should – be the model for many other nude calendars of worthwhile causes.

The calendar was listed for sale here, but apparently is now sold out. However, there’s other merchandise for purchase, if you’re interested.

Hotshots of Bowls

Naked 2019 bowls calendar on sale as top players bare all for incredible charity cause

In Brit-speak, “bowls” is not like American bowling but rather, according to Wikipedia, a sport usually played outdoors on grass “bowling greens” and “in which the objective is to roll biased balls so that they stop close to a smaller ball.” Sounds like a thrilling spectator sport, no? Combining it with nudity can only help.

Seems like a good game in which women can compete on an even playing field with men. The pictures from the calendar document that supposition. Since the article is from the Mirror tabloid, it’s not surprising to encounter words like “incredible” and “bare all” (which, of course, don’t quite accurately accord with reality). Still, no small effort must have been required to produce the calendar, as it features “almost 60 players [who] have stripped off for the special calendar which is raising funds” for one young player who developed leukemia.

Bowlers Bare All For The Hot Shots Of Bowls Charity Calendar

More information, from the source.

To order the calendar, check here (UK delivery only).

The Naked Rugby Players

Here’s another sports-themed nude charity calendar. According to their website, the group supports “six inclusive teams and the balls to cancer charity”. Whatever that means, exactly. Perhaps it refers to their objective described by a spokesman (in the article cited below) this way: “I hope this calendar empowers guys to check their packages more often and to feel comfortable talking about male cancers.”

The calendar is for 2019, but it’s a repeat, having been reported in 2017 here: Plaistow gay rugby club strip naked for calendar to tackle cancer

The article relates that “Seven ‘very handsome’ members of the Kings Cross Steelers… got starkers” for the calendar. The photographer is quoted saying “he was stunned when he turned up to shoot the Newham players as every one looked like Hollywood hearthrob Tom Cruise.” The photo for September in the 2017 calendar was “a more informal shot with one player holding a hose pipe in the shower in front of his laughing team mates.” And according to the photographer, the players “were a bit stiff at first.”

To order the calendar, check here.

Naturist Cleaners

Here’s a nude calendar on a very different theme. I expect to write more about this in another post, so I’ll be a little brief here. “Naturist Cleaners” is just what it sounds like: an agency for professional house cleaners who hire out to clean homes – and who work naked. This is an actual business in England, and apparently it’s quite legitimate and on the level.

The Naturist Cleaners website states:

Who says cleaning has to be a chore? Our naked cleaning service strips everything away and gets back to nature – for a spotless home and a cleaning service with a difference.

Naturist Cleaners are London-based and cover the entirety of the UK. Ultimately our service goes beyond a sparkling countertop and faultless floor – to ensure our naturist cleaners make you feel amazing about yourself.

Details about their calendar are here