Love and Kindness

A wildfire is burning its way across our hearts and souls. It is strong, consuming and impossible to ignore. We look at it every day for information, opinions, attention and validation. There are few that are safe but for many of us our faces are covered in soot, clothing singed, eyes burning and red.  

Social Media and the Internet combined is a confusing double-edged sword. For myself; an artist who enjoys sharing, researching and learning it has become a welcomed addiction similar to the way Encyclopedia Brittanica, National Geographic and The Public Library were all to me back in 1991. 

The power of the world wide web is astonishing. Individuals are making a living in various ways, others are raising money for projects, catastrophes, while many creatives are sharing their beautiful gifts with the world. On the flip side, it can draw blood. Sometimes it feels like an angry mob chasing down a victim with burning torches and tight lipped judgement, crowding a beautiful woman to the guillotine. Why? Because she is expressing herself in a way that somehow offends the sensibilities of the mob.

A modern day witch hunt. I'm talking about nude selfies, sexy photos, the topics of female empowerment, feminism and the objectification of women. My personal beliefs are very relaxed on these subjects as I aim to show women in their most natural, powerful, goddess of the earth state. Personally, I do not subscribe to labeling oneself a feminist. We should all just be humanists

In my work I enjoy sensuality, a bit of gentle wildness, fertility and straight up raw womanhood. I mostly see past the (what has been called) vapid snapshots and captions #ijustwokeuplikethis, or #whenyouhavenothingtowear and truly see a vulnerable, love seeking human just needing what we all need. A bit of love and kindness.

I've been reading some harsh articles and comments lately regarding a gorgeous young woman I photographed in 2008. A talented visual artist, a genetic superstar and now a woman on fire. Perhaps my utopian ideals of how we should all just love each other are impossible but I keep hoping. At the core we are really just the same grown up babies we once were; now needing nurturing and love more than ever as we run as fast as we can away from the flames.

Be Love.

Emily Ratajowski
Los Feliz, California 2008
Sweetness by Calethia DeConto