This Artist Is Using Her Body as a Canvas to Make a Statement About Body Image


Everyone has a different relationship to their body, and, often due to societal pressures, it's not always a positive one. To drive this point home, artist Jody Steel turned hers into a canvas.

In a time-lapse video she posted to Facebook, Steel uses paint and marker to create the illusion that her stomach has been wrung into an uncomfortable twist.

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"There have been times I've look [sic] in a mirror and wished for a perfect figure," Steel wrote in a comment on the video. "Once I realized that naturally, I don't have a Coke bottle figure, or long and thin legs, I began to let go of the pressures I've felt to fulfill an image that our society has deemed the pinnacle of beauty."

Steel's message struck a chord with hundreds of thousands of Facebook users who liked, shared and commented on the video. "The moment we stop wasting so much energy trying to become something we're not and instead focus on being healthy and living a full life, that's when we become free," one commenter wrote.

Steel said she has learned to find a happy compromise between food and exercise that helps foster a healthier relationship to her body. "I do still work towards goals, but not towards body image goals that are unrealistic for my body type. ... I eat food that makes me happy and go to the gym a healthy amount," the artist wrote.

"Let go of your demons and learn to enjoy the things you love in life," Steel said. "You can be healthy and happy."