I discovered the efforts of Amber Amour on Instagram after following an IG account about consent culture whose creative videos helped communicate the importance of understanding how consent could help to prevent sexual assault. The account way deleted by Instagram because the videos used animations of the human genitals to illustrate the point. However the discovering of Ms. Aamour a feminist educator activist for developing a culture of consent led to several conversations about her self-described nudist life and her work in the consent culture movement. As a survivor of sexual assault and someone who readily shares her practice of clothes free living, she brings a unique voice and perspective to the intersections of nudist practice, naturist ideals and building a consent culture. Finding these intersections of purpose is something we at Clothes Free Life believe is an important part of the way forward in normalizing clothes free living.
Earl D editor-in-chief Clothes Free Life.
I first was exposed to nudism (no pun intended) in 2013 when I moved into a NYC apartment with nine people, one of who was a nudist. I would have never considered living with a nudist if my partner at the time, who had already been acquainted with him, did not tell me constantly how “normal” he was.
I am ashamed to admit, when I heard “nudist” I instantly thought “sex freak”, “promiscuous”, and “pervert.” I had zillions of misconceptions running in my head and was surprised to find that my new roommate, Paul Nocera aka Nude Paul, was perfectly sane.
Every day when he finished work, he would come home, go straight to his room, undress, and then proceed doing every day house tasks like cooking, cleaning, reading the newspaper, and chatting with roommates. All eight other housemates were not nudists and none of us objectified him, stared, or made fun of his body.
Being exposed to nudity in a non-sexual way revolutionized my life.
At the time, I automatically equated nudity, and even scantily clad dress with sex. It’s the first thing my mind would jump to. I thought, why else would a person be naked or dress sexy other than to jump into action? This misconception was quickly broken when I realized that Nude Paul didn’t want to show off his to attract mates or to entice onlookers, he lived a clothes free life because he simply liked being naked.
I began to embrace my own body shortly after. I had been sleeping in the nude for over ten years, since high school, and my relationship with myself and nudity only grew after meeting Paul.
In the summer of 2015, I did my first nude photoshoot with Natey Nukez, an Atlanta based photographer. I was nervous and terrified at what people would think of me. I published the photos on my Instagram account were I received floods of love. There was something incredibly healing about using my body creatively and artistically.
As a sexual assault and domestic violence survivor, I found it incredibly empowering and liberating to embrace my “flaws” (stomach fat, cellulite, body hair, & stretch marks) and just be my natural self.
I decided to use nude modeling as a tool for activism to convey the message that humans are not sex objects and that nudity does not equate to sex. In less than a year my photos and their messages have been seen by thousands around the world. People at first were shocked but I can say confidently today that people are finally getting on board with the idea clothing (or lack thereof) does not determine how much respect you deserve.
As a woman, feminist, and survivor, it is incredibly important that we convey the message that everyone deserves love and respect. The human body is like art. It is a masterpiece and should be revered and treated as such.
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