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Forget dad bods: Neely Ker-Fox captured powerful portraits of moms of all shapes and sizes.
On her website, Ker-Fox describes the anxieties moms have about their bodies and just how well she understands what they’re going through.
As a photographer, a woman, and a mother living in a postpartum body… I am acutely aware of clients’ desires to be photoshopped. “My arms are fat… I have a double chin when I smile… My thighs are huge… Can you make my tummy smaller (even though you just gave birth 5 days ago!), etc. Can you photoshop that?!” I wish these women could see themselves how I see them, how I’m sure their children see them. I promise you, no one is sizing you up like you do, I promise you your child isn’t thinking, “My mommy needs to go run 5 miles because her belly is squishy”, your child is thinking… “I love laying my head on my mommy’s tummy and watching cartoons, her belly is so soft and comfy.”
She also makes sure to point out that giving birth was not a prerequisite for participation.
“Even though a lot of [the subjects] were mothers, some of them were mothers through adoption, and a lot of them were very happy with their bodies,” Ker-Fox told People. “I wanted to represent everybody. I didn’t want there to be anybody that saw this project and felt left out.”
Participants paid $165 to participate in a session at Ker-Fox’s studio in Columbus, Georgia. Children were welcomed and encouraged to participate along with their moms.
“I simply want to facilitate an event for women locally in our own community to have the chance to experience this empowering opportunity,” Ker-Fox wrote. “What I see happening is a beautiful thing, and I want to be a part of it. I want to do my part.”
H/T People | Photo via Ker-Fox Photography/Facebook
Marisa Kabas is a lifestyle reporter and activist. Her work has been published by Fusion, Fast Company, and Today. She’s also served as an editorial campaigns director for Purpose PBC, a social movement incubator.