We all know that artists can create their art in a myriad of different ways. The mantra of the art world, ‘art is in the eye of the beholder’ has been tested over and over; now we can add stretched to those tests.
A Pakistan-based artist named Sara Shakeel has turned societal beauty standards upside down by starting a project to counteract those standards that tell women they should hide or somehow reduce the appearance of our stretch marks.
Recently while photographing a friend, she was asked by the friend if she could somehow photoshop the stretch marks that appeared in the photo. That made Shakeel sad, and she began to formulate an idea, as only an artist can. She thought of her own stretch marks and of the cellulite on her own body.
What if she didn’t photoshop the stretch marks, but instead added glitter to accent them instead. She loved the effect and began to post a series of her glittered stretch mark photos that gained worldwide attention and some 20,000 likes.
Shakeel captioned one of her photos with “I have never felt so powerful and liberated and so ***cking proud of my stretch marks in my entire life.” Hundreds of women have commented on the images and have added their stories about the shame they felt towards their stretch marks. One comment mentioned that each stretch mark told its’ own story, I can relate to that as I’m sure many women can.
On her recent Instagram post, Shakeel added, this empowering message for her over 194,000 followers, “Support and love yourself for whoever you are, ’cause there is someone out there sharing the same feelings as you are,”
Nice to know you’re not alone right? It is something you don't often think about, but for many women are stretch marks have been an embarrassment for years. Because I've been told that I have a unique way of looking at things. I always looked at them as earned battle scars. Each pregnancy brought more marks, and once I got pregnant with twins and was over 55 inches around, well I don't think I have to tell you I would need more than one bottle of glitter.
Although, Shakeel was not the first artist to photograph stretch marks, the Spanish artist, Cinta Tort Cartro, posted her paint accented stretch marks on Instagram under the name of @zinteta, earlier last year.
The more positive images we can share with women all over the world the more minds, hopefully, we can change, when it comes to women and their bodies. And here you didn't realize you were carrying around a canvas that was just waiting to be filled with glitter or paint. Michaels, here I come, as soon as I find my 50% off coupon.