by, for and about Women of Size and their allies

Archive for March, 2013

(Looking) Back At You!: Haley Morris-Cafiero’s photo self-portraiture

This article originally appeared at the web address below, authored by Michael Zhang · Feb 11, 2013.

http://www.petapixel.com/2013/02/11/woman-photographs-herself-receiving-strange-looks-in-public/

waitwatchers-1

Memphis-based photographer Haley Morris-Cafiero has long been aware of strangers making fun of her behind her back due to her size. So aware, in fact, that she has turned the whole concept into a full-blown photography project. Titled Wait Watchers, the series consists of Morris-Cafiero’s self-portraits in public in which strangers can be seen in the background giving her strange looks and/or laughing.

The project was born when Morris-Cafiero was working on a separate project titled Something to Weigh. For one of the photos in that project, she snapped a self-portrait while sitting on some steps in Times Square.

After processing the film, she noticed that there was a man behind her making a face at her while being photographed by a female friend:

waitwatcher

She noticed something similar in a photograph captured just five minutes later at a different location.

Morris-Cafiero then began setting up her camera in heavily trafficked public areas, composing the shots, setting a self-timer, and then stepping into the frame. The camera snaps a photo while she’s doing everyday things (e.g. chatting on her phone or grabbing a bite to eat), and her hope is that the image also captures an interesting expression from at least one passing stranger.

I now reverse the gaze and record their reactions to me while I perform mundane tasks in public spaces. I seek out spaces that are visually interesting and geographically diverse. I try to place myself in compositions that contain feminine icons or advertisements. Otherwise, I position myself and the camera in a pool of people…and wait [#]

The images capture the gazer in a microsecond moment where they, for unknowable reasons, have a look on their face that questions my presence. Whether they are questioning my position in front of the lens or questioning my body size, the gazer appears to be visually troubled that I am in front of them [#]

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

Woman Photographs Herself Receiving Strange Looks in Public

You can find more photos from this series over on Haley Morris-Cafiero’s personal website.


Image credits: Photographs by Haley Morris-Cafiero

Dances With Fat

End the war on fat peopleReader Kathleen sent me an article today about a researcher who suggests using a stent graft to limit blood flow to the gut after eating as a way to decrease weight gain.  This made me think about all the alleged “obesity interventions” that have possible side effect of death.  So I have to ask myself – in this whole “let’s eradicate obesity” push, does it count if they kill me?

I know this sounds dramatic but I’m starting to think that the people who are supposed to be responsible for my healthcare want me to be thin so badly that they are happy to risk my life to get it done, and it doesn’t matter what I want.

Weight loss surgeries are  “likely increase the actual mortality risks for these patients by 7-fold in the first year and by 363% to 250% the first four years.” Then there…

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