Ashley Wright wants young moms to know that breastfeeding a wonderful things. This is what she says about the campaign she started and why these pictures:
As much as I had envisioned the photos going viral for breastfeeding, I never thought detractors would arise in which I would need to explain my intent and photo’s purpose. As a breastfeeding advocate, I simply wanted to stop everyone in their tracks and say, “lets talk about breastfeeding!” What better way to do that than to throw a bunch of beautiful naked women together breastfeeding their babies?! So I thought. I remember telling the mothers, photographer, and stylists, I want to sell breastfeeding like it’s cigarettes. I want every woman and young lady to say, “OooO I want to breastfeed my baby too!” And I want the men to encourage mothers to breastfeed. Not only because it’s the healthiest thing to do for your child but also because its ‘THE THING’ to do for your child.
In my conquest to increase the numbers of mothers breastfeeding, I find that young mothers tend to say that breastfeeding is unattractive, only old ladies do that, my boobs are going to sag, there’s formula for that, along with it just isn’t sexy. Yes we said it ladies and gentlemen SEXy (emphasis on the S-E-X). In this new age, where we have taken a cultural shift to sex sells everything, women are defining their self worth with how sexy they look and feel. Is it right or wrong? Not for me to discuss at this time. Nonetheless, with seeing how large companies advertise, to get the masses to buy and set the trends, they make it sexy. So I took note.
Now let me inform you of MY definition of sexy. Sexy to me has never been nudity. Sexy for me is internal confidence, self-acceptance and self-awareness. Having at one point feeling unsexy and being a single mother, I found an unparalleled amount of power and confidence in nurturing my child from my bosom. I tapped into one of the greatest superpowers of being a mom. Then, I decided to display that behind the camera lens.
My wonderful friend Katie H. said it best, “…they are not exploiting the female form or the act of breast feeding by posing nude. Every single thing we stand for is sex, reproduction and passing on our genes. It’s what makes living things continue to exist as everything we do leads to sex. Breastfeeding is not intentionally sexual, it just is. It just IS in its essence! I realize that’s scary for some people to face but it is TRUE. That’s why you want to look away but you just can’t. For these gorgeous women to pose and have their bodies represent the organic act of providing for their children is truthful, female expression and health and beauty…”
So as you view this last picture of me feeding my daughter, take notice that there is no photo shop, no touch-ups, no editing, as I want to show you just how comfortable I am in my skin; acne scars, stretch marks and all. Plus how far I’ll go to stand for this amazing cause. When you look at this picture and the others of mothers breastfeeding (nude or not), I want you to see confident, sexy women who bared it all for breastfeeding; who feel sexy at this very stage of life and motherhood. Proud women, who accept where they are now and maintain confidence in the growth process to come. Courageous women in their feat to bring awareness and attention to educate and inspire others to breastfeed!
Photos by Michael Oliveri Photography