People Always Gawked At Overweight Woman, So She Turned Their Reactions Into A Photo Series
Most of the time we look down upon and judge people who do harm to others, but racism and bigotry make us hate people for just being who they are. Some people in this world have a true prejudice against people because of the number of pounds that they weigh.
The media tells us what we should consider beautiful and ideal and we agree to that and reject what doesn’t fit into that category.
She shoots for five minutes as to not bring too much attention to herself to get the visual reactions to her appearance.
“I don’t do it out of anger. I consider it a social experiment,” she said according to Bored Panda. “It’s not a ‘gotcha!’ kind of sensationalism. But it is taking the camera and reversing the gaze of the stranger back on to them. I think it’s a barometer of society, really.”
“In 2010, I set up a camera to take a self-portrait in Times Squares in New York City. After I had the film developed, I looked at the images and found that a man was standing behind me and appeared to be sneering at me,” she writes on her Kickstarter page. “I never thought that I would capture a glance that can last a microsecond. Since then, I have been setting up a camera in public to see if I can capture the gazes of the strangers who walk by me while I am doing everyday, mundane acts.”
And her shots of some people’s disdain for overweight people were telling. She even captured a New York City Police Officer mocking her.
Her photo series quickly went viral after it was posted on the blog Lenscratch.
“After my photos received viral exposure, I found that most of the articles had comment sections filled with thousands of anonymous comments criticizing my body, my clothes, my face, my hair, etc,” Morris-Cafiero said.
“Then the critical comments starting coming via email. Most of the comments and emails said that my life (and in some cases the world) would be better if I lost weight and got a makeover. The unsolicited criticism inspired the next phase of the Wait Watchers series.”
Morris-Cafiero, who has suffered from eating disorders and Hypothyroidism, will focus her next series, which is tentatively called “Self Improvement” on just that.
It will show her exercising, shopping for clothes, and trying on make-up and will capture stranger’s reactions to what society told her they think she should look like.