In the summer of 2010 photographer Keith Seat gave life to the project “Seeing Beauty in All: Over-40 Nudes” based out of Washington, DC. He has compiled a wonderful array of black-and-white photos, using non-professional models over the age of 4o. (The oldest models to date are in their mid-70s). He explains his motivations:
My Over-40 Nudes project seeks to expand conventional concepts of physical beauty beyond people with bodies that are youthful and conventionally near perfect. I believe we can enhance that definition by seeing older bodies – complete with imperfections and evidence of aging – as beautiful because they have been lived in and have experienced life with all its joys and sorrows.
His commitment to producing images that celebrate diversity is also reflected in his approach when working with the models:
My interactions with the people I am photographing goes well beyond the basics of the environment and poses, to help them feel relaxed and un-self-conscious, and to discussions of their perceptions of their bodies and the experience of being seen and seen as beautiful. This causes many participants to feel more self-acceptance and satisfaction with their bodies, and sometimes even a deep sense of healing.
We are thrilled with the level of diversity, not only with size and body type, but also with the varied representation of models of different races and sexual orientations. And that’s not the only reason we’re happy to highlight his work. Additionally, Seat states that he is “not about significant retouching or ‘photoshopping.’ Instead, my project celebrates the beauty that is actually present in over-40 nudes.”
Because Seat does not use professional models, he invites women and men over the age of 40 in the Washington, D.C. area to participate in this ongoing project, which he also hopes to publish as a book.
* * *