PONDERING THE MORALITY
OF
ARTISTIC NUDE PHOTOGRAPHY

by

Peter J. Mancus,

Owner, www.wowthewonderofwomen.com

pmancus@comcast.net

707-703-9210

1.

Does photographing nude women exploit or degrade them?

1. No! All models are of legal age, and, each, based on a high level of informed consent, made a well informed decision to pose nude, voluntarily, for their own reasons, and they each did so, happily.
2. Every model is maturely well adjusted to their sexuality and are extremely comfortable being nude in the presence of others, especially in the pursuit of art.
3. Every model is an independent thinker who, for good reasons, rejects society’s and religion’s taboos against nudity.
4. Every model is an independent contractor who enjoys an absolute right—and freedom of choice—to pose nude or to refuse to do so. No one exercised undue pressure to coerce them to do anything they did not want to do.
5. Every model freely signed a model release authorizing commercial use of the pictures I took of them, and they were each well compensated.
6. Talented, industrious, attractive women who know how to pose well, and are willing to pose nude, earn a better than average income and many enjoy substantial perks and collateral benefits arising from being a nude model.
7. This WOW site extolls women, which is the exact opposite of exploitation.

2.
Is nude photography sinful or immoral?

1. Reasonably constituted intelligent people entertain sincere differences of opinion, but I think a compelling meritorious answer to this question is an emphatic “No!”
2. The Bible has many passages that rail against sinful conduct involving nudity; however, I am unaware of anything in the Bible, when it is construed as a whole, that makes it clear that mere nudity, or merely looking at a nude person—and enjoying the nude person’s beauty—is sinful. As I read the Bible, what the Bible condemns as sinful is certain conduct, motive, or thought, that violate the Ten Commandments, but nudity, per se, is not condemned.
3. The Bible states that a man who looks upon a woman with lustful intent in his heart should pluck out his eyes. I do not construe that passage to mean that mere nudity, or merely looking at a nude person, is sinful or that a person with lust in his heart should literally pluck out his eyes if he has a natural reaction to seeing a beautiful woman nude. What the Bible condemns is not mere nudity or looking at a nude person and enjoying the nude person’s beauty but looking at a person with lust in one’s heart, even if the other person is dressed.
4. Per the Bible, in Genesis, God’s original plan was for Mankind, start-ing with Adam and Eve, to be nude, in the Garden of Eden, unashamed. God is even quoted as saying, in reference to their nudity in nature, “It is good.”
5. I like God’s original plan . . . as long as the temperatures are not too extreme and the bugs do not bite.
6. I believe Christians, and those with a control and power agenda, have misinterpreted a key part of Genesis. I believe Adam and Eve became “ashamed” after Eve ate the forbidden fruit not because they then be-came aware of their nudity but they became ashamed only because they knew they violated God’s instructions for them to not eat the for-bidden fruit.
7. Every human being is born naked.
8. Naked is 100% natural.
9. I reject as absurd any belief that makes what is natural sinful or immoral.
10. Christians believe all humans are made “in the image of God.” Assuming that is true, I am seriously challenged to understand how or why any person capable of critical thought would allow society or any person of influence to brainwash them into thinking of their own body in its natural state—nude—to somehow be sinful or immoral or some-thing to hide from others and to be ashamed of when nude. Thus, I accept our natural state, which is 100% nude.
11. Since we are, allegedly, made “in the image of God”, and I would love to behold my creator—God, I feel closer to God when I photograph God’s finest creation: woman.
12. For me, what is intensely virulently absurd, outrageous, and intolerable is this: Censors among us, who do their best, to shove their values, their likes and dislikes, and their taboos, down my throat and compel me—or anyone—to live our lives according to their norms. I refuse to function as anyone’s prisoner or puppet. I shall live my life as I choose, per my values and my conscience, for my reasons.
13. For me, it is obscene and insufferable to tolerate making “dirty” what is breathtakingly beautiful, rare, and natural: e.g., a ravishingly sensuous, lovely, young lady in her natural state, 100% nude.
14. I can look at and enjoy a nude woman’s beauty without being lustful or sinful.
15. I am perfectly capable of not sexualizing mere nudity.
16. I am leery of many who have a vested interest when they opine that artistic nude photography is sinful, such as the textile industry that wants us to buy and wear out clothes so we buy more clothes, and religious people who do not construe the Bible as I do who suffer from their own hangups about nudity and sin.
17. Historically, nudes have been the consistent, common, primary theme in secular and religious art, from when a primitive caveman used charcoal to scratch a nude on the walls of his cave to the 21st Century when millions use cameras to capture a nude’s image. Thus, there is a strong consensus that artistic renditions of nudity, in various media, is respectable, acceptable and has socially redeeming merit.
18. Historians report that the first female nude, the goddess of love, Aphrodite, appeared approximately the 4th century BC, created by sculptors. From then, until now, societies, religions, and governments, have manifested an arguably schizophrenic, conflicting, persistent, double-standard, with some supporting nudity in the name of art and others being vehemently against, except in the doctor’s office or the bed-room with one’s lawful spouse.
19. Approximately 13th century AD, the female nude was the dominant respectable major theme for all forms of visual arts and it has remained so, to date.
20. For several centuries, European artists, mainly Italians, portrayed nudes in idealized forms, typically in grand mythological or religious contexts, with the approval of Pope after Pope, for centuries.
21. St. Peter’s Basilica, in the Vatican, world headquarters for the Roman Catholic Church, is filled with hundreds, if not thousands, of wonderful nude statutes and paintings of angels and males and females of all ages, on public display, with the Pope’s approval, in the church where the Pope conducts mass!

3.
Is the WOW site immoral because it tempts people to look at pictures of nude women and arouses lustful desire in men or lesbians?

1. No!
2. I am not responsible for anyone’s thoughts or reactions to a WOW picture.
3. Mere nudity, and even mere sensuality, are not inherently or per se sinful or immoral.
4. Every one who looks at a WOW picture has to take ownership of their own reaction and be responsible for same.
5. I refuse to allow censors to dictate to me and superimpose their ta-boos upon me and force me to confine myself to pre-teen, “innocent” or “family friendly” standards of “morality”.