A number of retailers have recently launched body-positive lingerie campaigns, but this photo project takes things one step further. In “Underneath We Are Women,” Amy Herrmann photographed ladies in their underwear. Then she asked them to really bare it all by sharing their most vulnerable stories.
Herrmann has collected stories and photos from 100 women and organized them into a book, which she’s fundraising for on Kickstarter. “This project is about showcasing the diversity of women’s bodies and sharing the stories that shaped them rather than succumbing to the fictitious default stories that have long been associated with various body types,” Herrman wrote on the Kickstarter page.
The photos are powerful, but the stories are the part that really sticks with you. Check out a few of them below:
“After I had my surgery, I was never really self-conscious of the scar, it was just a reminder of what I had been through… I don’t want it to fade… I always want this reminder of how amazing my body and mind really are.” —Sarah Somervell
“I wish, as a little girl, I had seen something like this. A disabled role model telling me that I was allowed to love myself, that I didn’t have to hide, be ashamed of, or apologize for my body. That I existed. I had to figure this out (for the most part) on my own, and at times it was incredibly lonely, traumatizing, and isolating.” —Ruby Allegra
“I’ve suffered an eating disorder, largely at the hands of the modeling industry. And underneath my confident, positive exterior I’ve had ongoing issues with, at times, crippling anxiety. I’ve heard everything from ‘you’re too tall’ to ‘you’re too happy’ to ‘you should try plus-size modeling.’ You cannot judge a book by it’s cover, people. You will never know the story inside if you do. Every body is beautiful and every freckle, hair, blemish, scar, and wrinkle is a trophy to be proud of! ” —Carolyn Uphill