Individuals use art in attempt to embrace body imperfections

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EAST LANSING, Mich. — We’ve all thought about using paint on paper and canvas, but have you ever thought about using art on top of a body insecurity?

Individuals are now using body glitter and tattoos to combat negative self image– sending a  message to not only be okay with our scars, but to show them off.

Tabarah Emovon, a special effects makeup artist from London, United Kingdom said she uses glitter to fill in her stretch marks, and then later posts the finished product on Instagram where her followers have the opportunity to give feedback.

“They all loved them! I have been re-posted on larger pages, and sent numerous messages all saying lovely things,” Emovon said.

Emovon, who has been in the makeup artist industry for eight years, said filling in stretch marks with glitter is a trend that will allow people to feel free and confident.

“The use of things like glitter, bright colors, gems and sparkles, which all have positive connotations, allow people to transfer those positive thoughts to things such as their stretch marks,” Emovon said.

Emovon said the 20-minute temporary process includes primer, loose glitter, and a paintbrush.

“I use glitter primer for MAC or NYX and I paint the primer on with a small art spatula, I line all the stretch marks. Then I take loose glitter and a paintbrush and carefully dab the glitter over the lines,” Emovon said.

Emovon said using art to highlight beauty will allow people to look at themselves as a work of art– and she is not the only one who uses art to embrace body imperfections.

Victoria Benedetti, a tattoo artist at Floating Lotus Tattoo in Oregon, creates cover-up tattoos on her clients in attempt to make their scars even more beautiful.

Benedetti said she performs cover-up tattoos on surgery scars, burn scars, self-inflicted scars, stretch marks and road rash.

“I have even performed one over an old gunshot wound scar,” Benedetti said.

Benedetti, who has been a tattoo artist for 13 years, said cover-up tattoos have now become over 90 percent of her business and she performs them nearly three to four times a week.

“As an artist, I am very lucky to be able to do this and feel very honored and grateful for people’s trust in me,” Benedetti said.

Benedetti said one of her most memorable cover-up tattoos was covering mastectomy scars with a gloriously detailed and colorful peacock.

“Tattoos in general are super powerful, but cover-up tattoos are even more so,” Benedetti said.  

Alisa Henriquez, a painting professor at Michigan State University, said as an artist and teacher she has tried to get art students to utilize the visual language in order to express ideas that are important to them.

“Those things can range from things that are really political, to things that are personal, to things that are emotional, to things that are really conceptual,” Henriquez said.

Henriquez said art isn’t necessarily moving in just one direction, but rather a more global direction with multiple different approaches being taken.

“It is an exciting time to be making art,” Henriquez said.

When it comes to embracing body imperfections through using art, Henriquez said the more people who do this, the more liberated and comfortable people can become.

“It’s a challenge to what you see in the media, and it’s a way of kind of countering the surplus of images in our environment. So, the more women who do that, the better,” Henriquez said.

 

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