Every Women’s Month we are reminded – more than usual – how we as women need to stand up and rise. How us as women should go for our goals and dreams. How we should all stand up for one another and empower each other. We are reminded of the current femicide; the gender inequality that we face and the sexual violence and attacks on us women and on children. It’s amazing to see how more and more women do indeed embrace themselves and start standing up for one another. From a personal point of view I’ve always felt that we can all win. There is no “competition”.
Over the last little while I have however noticed how easy it is for women to throw around the “men-are-trash” terms and love to jump onto that bandwagon when it suits them; however some of the same women would post: “A real women would never…” or the whole body-shaming and slut-shaming thing. One can only deduct that this type of opinions would certainly be of those how have not felt adequate enough or perhaps even insecure themselves. I’d really love to know how any of these ladies actually stand up for other women and cheer for them – regardless if it’s something they would personally do or not do.
I find it ironic how many of these ladies demand respect and recognition for being a Queen. For being empowered and independent; yet have no problem pointing out the unruliness of another empowered woman. When another woman’s courage becomes a “vanity” problem; or someone’s self-confidence is suddenly highlighted as “no self-respect”. Earlier this evening I read on a lady’s post that “real women do not need the validation from other people, therefore, they do not seek attention by wearing little clothing”. Is that not just loaded with “I wish I could be brave enough to dress whichever way I want to and not care what others think whilst winning”?
This leads me to the two questions: 1. Since when has the amount of clothing made you more or less successful invalidating your own feelings or your self worth? 2. How does the amount of clothing you wear or the amount of skin make you less or more valuable as an individual? How does said woman praise and shout for women empowerment yet at the same time shoot any lady down that shows a little more skin than she would dare? This also sounds like the very same woman that may just say that the amount of clothing you wear would be equal to the amount of respect you earn/deserve.
Recently I have discussed the numbers of women who are raped in South Africa per annum (note that due to the number of cases that are not reported; it is not possible to give a correct number of possible rapes per hour/day/month/year) and consequently to that the number of gender-based violence.
Population-based surveys show very high levels of intimate partner violence (IPV) and non-partner sexual violence (SV) in particular, with IPV being the most common form of violence against women.
Whilst people of all genders perpetrate and experience intimate partner and or sexual violence, men are most often the perpetrators and women and children the victims
More than half of all the women murdered (56%) in 2009 were killed by an intimate male partner
Between 25% and 40% of South African women have experienced sexual and/or physical IPV (intimate partner violence) in their lifetime
Just under 50% of women report having ever experienced emotional or economic abuse at the hands of their intimate partners in their lifetime
Prevalence estimates of rape in South Africa range between 12% and 28% of women ever reporting being raped in their lifetime
Between 28 and 37% of adult men report having raped a woman
Non-partner SV is particularly common, but reporting to the police is very low. One study found that one in 13 women in Gauteng had reported non-partner rape, and only one in 25 rapes had been reported to the police
South Africa also faces a high prevalence of gang rape
Most men who rape do so for the first time as teenagers and almost all men who ever rape do so by their mid-20s
There is limited research into rape targeting women who have sex with women. One study across four Southern African countries, including South Africa, found that 31.1% of women reported having experienced forced sex
Male victims of rape are another under-studied group. One survey in KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape found that 9.6% of men reported having experienced sexual victimisation by another man
What the stats above do not show are the number of women who are verbally or psychologically abused by other women. How people are targeted, bullied and called out on social media for the way they live their life or for what they choose to post about themselves on social media. How women would rather band together and stand up with other men; slut-shaming women who post selfies and/or “sexy” images on social media, than standing up for those women. It’s easy to say “men-are-trash” when a guy makes a funny by posting a “women belong in the kitchen” joke, yet it is okay to agree with the same guy calling out another woman who has found self-confidence and enjoys posting about herself/her outfit/her weight gain or loss/her sock and shoes/the food she eats/the competition she took part in etc etc. One of the latest repetitive posts I see is “I’m so tired of all these selfies with quotes and all you see is bum and boobs” or “show me a real woman who does not feel like she needs validation or attention from the whole world by showing off her body”. What does that even mean? What makes a woman a “real” woman?
I feel our country specifically is facing a tough time. Apart from the global economical damage that we are facing, the all-time high unemployment rate that is continually rising and our own government’s crimes and corruption; we are facing a particular tricky era where we as women are rising. Standing up against the oppression of what our fore-mothers faced. We are in an incredible era where we as women have more of a voice than ever before. Yet here you are, spitting on another queen who’s rising in her own time on her own terms in her own way. Standing with all the aggression against other women. What kind of empowerment are you after? Why demand equality, justice and empowerment when you stand up and laugh other women down. Calling them out for believing in themselves? Knocking them down for owning who they are? What is a “real woman”? One who can clap for another woman, without judgement, without malice and without misogyny.
Many a times I am asked the strangest questions; (strange to me) about what I do – or I hear the assumptions and can’t help but have a giggle.
To understand what I do, is to understand why I am doing what I do first. Have I lost you? What I mean is that when you look at my work, my posts on Instagram and my website; there is a general assumption as to what I do without realising what I actually do.
In the past I’ve received private messages on Social Media…
Asking for explicit images of me sometimes posing in suggestive ways. Usually this amuses me; and I always ask what gave them the idea that I’d do that or that I’m a porn star. And usually the response would be that I shouldn’t get offended as I am the one “asking for it” by posting nude images of myself. My first question would usually be : where did I show my genitals and second question : where do I pleasure myself.
You see, we as humans, and we as society have been lied to for so many years that we actually believe that the human body is a dirty, sinful thing when not covered with fabric. We have taught generations of children to be ashamed of themselves. To be embarrassed with what we were born with. That evil creatures will lurk around any corner and will pounce on you for showing a little too much skin. That there would be justification for those acts! You asked for it after all by “exposing” some of what you were born with!!
I was asked in a recent interview what I’d tell anyone who condemns what I do or brand my work as pornography. The difficult thing is that I cannot change society’s mind single handily. I do however believe that if we brought our children up to love their own bodies, and not to be ashamed of their bodies, that we respect each other’s naked bodies – not by hiding it but accepting it as natural and normal. Not to sexualise nudity and skin; that it would solve so many of our crimes and the worlds issues today.
Think about it…
There would be less sexual crimes, less depression due to self esteem issues, less self harm and eating disorders. Imagine a world with more confidence and acceptance of one self? We would have so much more success in every business sector! So many more people would achieve their dreams and optimum productivity!
I digress. Years ago when I posed for a boudoir shoot, and whilst changing outfits, the photographer of the day asked whether he could take a shot (picture) of me. My back was facing him and I was dressed in only my knickers. I felt a little shy yet intrigued. I’ve never really had an issue with being naked; yet I’ve never actually thought of being photographed naked.
Once I got changed into my next outfit the photographer showed me on the LCD viewer what he had taken of me whilst topless. It was a gorgeous shot. It summed up to me; what I see in women. Soft, elegant, warm, feminine, sensual, love, beauty all in one. I was amazed that THAT was me! And so I was happy to shoot implied nude. After realising that this not only motivated me to share the beauty of a woman, but also to encourage other women – who do not have self confidence – that they are in fact beautiful in their own skin!
After a few months of shooting boudoir and implied nude; I met Peter from Boudoir Fusion Photography who took my first bodyscape images and I was blown away! Never mind that the images I was looking at; was of me!!! However; the human body is so darn beautiful. And every other bodyscape that Peter have done, took my breath away. I quickly learned that my art, my expression through my modelling and the images taken by me, can show emotion and can evoke emotion.
When you look at my work…
I would like to believe that most people see past the ‘nakedness’. That you notice the colours, the shapes, the textures in the images. That you are able to feel or notice whether there is sorrow, or happiness. Whether the image is more of a fine art piece to be hung on a wall of a surgeons office, or something that could be looked at or admired from your mobile phone screen, used in an advertising campaign empowering women, or used as a PC screensaver. That you can believe that I’m more than a ‘naked woman’; someone who at the age of 39 believes wholeheartedly that ANYONE can love themselves and is art. That anyone – no matter what your age, your size or your background – can love the skin that they are in. That nudity DOES NOT equal sexuality.
I love modelling, photography and matters of the heart and mind. I love art. I love the human body. Combine all of these; and you will find what I do. This is only the beginning…
If you are a loyal follower; you would have seen a while back that Ive posted some of the weird and wonderful DM’s I receive from followers. Most the time these are from the arb guys. The “passer by’s” I’d like to call them 😂
Note that I don’t always disclose their names as I really dislike “naming and shaming”. A lot of you disagree with this; however I do not feel good/satisfied/better/empowered in embarrassing someone else; and certainly not out there to “teach lessons”. This is good comical fun though…
I’m often asked how I even deal with it or cope with it. Very easily. 1. They have no idea who I am, 2. They were raised not respecting women 3. They have problems with their sexual lives 4. They are trollers
U no pretty anyway!!!!!
Sugar Daddy Proposal
Wanting to get spoilt rotten with good money, afford luxury clothes, shoes and good lifestyle with a weekly allowance? Am a sugar daddy looking for a loyal and honest sugar Baby to take care of, kindly HMU if interested.
I’m still waiting 😎
Dude: Hey kan u send naked video pvt
Me: You first
Dude: Ai jis do video call
Me: No, just send me a video of you
Dude: No do not hafe video of me
Me: Send me a video of you
Me: Send me a video of you
Me: A naked one
Me: Dude – seriously? Let’s think about this. Really carefully
Me: You really think I will send “naked pictures or videos” of me? To you? Who are you even? If you want naked videos or pictures go look on pornsites. Bye
Me: BTW send me your parents details – I need to congratulate them on teaching you manners and respect
Dude: Hiiiiiiiii sexy
Dude: You are so gorgeous, and have an incredible delicious body. Tell me, would a fine women like you be taken? Let’s hook up sometime and I can show you a few things *insert an unusual amount of arb emoji’s*
Dude: I guess the cat caught your tongue *insert double of the above amount of emoji’s*
Me: Hey there, thank you. No – however you did appear to message me at 3am. And in all fairness I was catching up on some much needed beauty sleep. No kitties in sight! That leads me to my next answer. I have never gone anywhere against my will, therefor not “taken”. I am however married 🙂
Dude: Aaaaaaaah sorry. Just delete this message. Thanks. I didn’t mean any of it anyway
Me: WHAT? Are you telling me I’m ugly?
Dude: That is not what I meant.
Me: Oh, so I’m not gorgeous, nor fine?
Dude: No, you are very beautiful
Me: Oh you’re assuming that I won’t be lost anymore since I’m “taken” therefor you won’t need to show me “a few things”?
Me: Out of curiosity; what exactly were you going to show me (considering you appear to be 19 and I am 39)
USER NOT FOUND
Too Easy 2
Dude: Can I ask you something?
Me: (think: here we go….) Typing: Sure 😊
Dude: When you pose, do you get horny. Or do you turn the photographer on?
Me: No, and no. This is a job. Do you get turned on at work?
Me: Well I don’t
Dude: Can I send you a picture?
Me: No thank you
Dude: Have a nice evening
Dude: If you change your mind……
Dude: Thnx 4 da follow love ur gallery wow
Me: Thank you
Dude: Pleasure do you mind sharing some pictures or videos mwa
Me: You may find all my images on artbyam.com
Dude: Was hoping u would make it more special by sending it 4 me Swt *insert roses and hearts and kisses and hearts and roses*
Me: Thanks. I’m a professional model. I don’t swap images. All my images are “special”
Dude: Im totally aware of that but u caught my attention and I find u so attractive its also my dream and vision to become a pro bodybuilder
Me: I suggest you do your research prior to addressing any lady and disrespecting her. I am not a porn star. One of the lessons I suggest you learn (on your way to get your Pro card and being a prominent figure within the industry) is respect and being humble. NOT asking to swap nude videos.
Me: Have a nice life
Dude: Hey! hgd?
Dude: halo sexy; wmj?
Me: what does that even mean?
Dude: jmr mooi dang. js bja mooi!
Dude: Jys rrg bja mooi
Whilst I do try and engage as much as I can with my followers on IG, I limit my time on Facebook. I also found that the people on Facebook are – in general and not everyone – a little more rude and crude. Perhaps I have just started loosing interest due to the very strict rules and restrictions. Regardless, I value each person who follows me, respects me and takes the time to appreciate what I do. Whatever their thoughts, assumptions or intentions are!
Version 3 will most likely be posted soon! Hope you had a little giggle 😜
I posted an image last night with a brief description of what happens when I shoot. I’ve had such great responses and more questions that I figured I may give a little more details of what my general shoot day looks like.
I instantly feel irritated with some questions and remarks when it comes to what I do. However; trying the shoe on my foot – allow me to set a few things straight:
Do you have sex with other photographers and models on set? Don’t be ridiculous would be my first answer. Think of your work place. Do sleep with your clients? Wait…. don’t answer that….the average person doesn’t! We are all there to do a job. Not have sex.
Do you or your photographer get aroused/turned on when you shoot in nude? Again; Don’t be ridiculous. HOWEVER; this is a plausible question as I gather that if you are not used to see people in the nude; being human – it may be a “turn on”. Should this ever be the case, I would not know as all the people I’ve worked with have always kept our shoots very professional. Then again I only work with people who are experienced with what I do.
How does your husband “allow” you to do this? I do not “belong” to a single other individual. I’m not property to be owned – therefor no one should or would have ownership of me and “allow” me to do anything. I would advise you to look very deeply within yourself when you think this way. All my loved ones (including my children) support me, and encourages me. They are fully aware that when I am with them; I give “me”, I give my time and my heart to them. What you see on photos of me is something that is created – not my personality, my heart, my mind or any other intimate moments of me.
Clients get in touch with me via my website, Messenger on FB or DM’s on Insta. “Clients” refer to an individual or company that will employ me/pay for me to model a brand, a concept or something abstract. This could be an amateur photographer, a clothing/beauty/food/coffee etc brand, or artist or even a private individual that wants my work displayed in their house/workplace/office/reception or an artist that wishes to paint or sketch me.
Once they have reached out, I send my hourly rates and we discuss what the requirements are. We book hair, make-up and wardrobe if necessary as well as the location.
It’s very similar to an actress – I am provided a reference/dream board/idea and then meet for a briefing of the job. We go through the set; we discuss at length what mister client wants to achieve and then we start.
First half hour is usually like a rehearsal. I become or embody the mood that is meant to reflect what we shoot. Acting out the emotions and moods. Moving around and “connecting” with the lens. The photographer would take a few shots and we would look at the results and unpack how we want to change or enhance the results thus far. Sometimes we nail the shot; sometimes we don’t.
Depending on client (I call them trigger happy or interval clickers) I move with every shot or I pose until desired shot, light, mood, and pose is achieved. I have to change my facial expression and my body continuously. A lot of people don’t realise this but posing in it self is work! It means you’re posing head to toe – all at the same time! Suck your tummy in, relax the look in your eyes, relax hands and fingers, chin out and nose down, feet pointed at all times, arch back and push out butt etc. You have to know what you are good at, your “good sides”, your flaws (and how to move to avoid it), and not to move in extreme gestures and movements.
This takes a while and sometimes we end up with amazing work, other times not. For most jobs (nude excluded of course); I’d have 3 outfit changes. We then “load” the images onto the computer, and go through the images. Selection process then post work begins. This is the harder part, and if the light and set up wasn’t spot on; the most technical part for the photographer would be in post work. Editing becomes more challenging.
Leave the BS at the door
This is my passion – though it’s work I LOVE every minute of every shoot. I do not entertain any bullshit on set ever. Then again the people I work with have always been incredibly professional. No person will try anything on. I have always prided myself in being professional and making it clear that there’s no room for any nonsense.
I do not drink on any job, nor would I work with anyone who does. My manager is fully aware of my movements and my diary, as is my family. As soon as I arrive at a job, I’d WhatsApp everyone my location.
The P word
I do not get involved with “adult entertainment” industry, not because I do not agree with it, but because that is not my line of work. Should I ever be addressed or employed for anything that involves the adult industry; I’d consult with my team and most importantly talk to my family.
That being said: I will not and have never entertained or considered pornography. I will not engage or consider that avenue, and have no inclination nor desire to explore that. Yes, pornography to some could also be art. For me personally; it’s not my thing.
Pornography, representation of sexual behaviour in books, pictures, statues, motion pictures, and other media that is intended to cause sexual excitement. The distinction between pornography (illicit and condemned material) and erotica (which is broadly tolerated) is largely subjective and reflects changing community standards. The word pornography, derived from the Greek porni (“prostitute”) and graphein (“to write”), was originally defined as any work of art or literature depicting the life of prostitutes.
Because the very definition of pornography is subjective, a history of pornography is nearly impossible to conceive; imagery that might be considered erotic or even religious in one society may be condemned as pornographic in another. Thus, European travelers to India in the 19th century were appalled by what they considered pornographic representations of sexual contact and intercourse on Hindu temples such as those of Khajuraho; most modern observers would probably react differently. Many contemporary Muslim societies likewise apply the label “pornography” to many motion pictures and television programs that are unobjectionable in Western societies. To adapt a cliché, pornography is very much in the eye of the beholder.
I demand respect
I take my work very seriously This is NOT an invite to ask me out, to ask me for a coffee, to ask “to get to know me”, to send me proposals, to send me genitalia or ask me advise on your genitals, to request to pose naked with me, to tell me how I’m asking to be disrespected, to ask me whether I have had any specific sexual deeds done to me.
What I do is all on images – you cannot assume that I don’t have anything left for my special person in my life. There’s so much more to a body than what the eye meets in an image. In fact it is YOUR creativity and imagination that creates something from what you see. If this leads you to anything other than appreciation; keep it to yourself.
A lot of my work is for sale too! Questions about who I am, my life, my tattoos etc? Have a look at my blogs. It’s all on here. Thank you to each of you for your ongoing love, kindness and support – I value you so much! I’ve had countless messages from women especially thanking me for inspiration or motivation; and to be frank: THAT makes my day.
🖤 Don’t you think the curves of a woman is just beautiful? 🖤