09-MARCH-2011 Due to more complaints about my image galleries on FUCKBOOK, I mean FACEBOOK, I have decided to leave that “tool” of networking behind other than the very basics. I post here at AmberUnmasked and can inform the feed at twitter.com/elizabethamber which I encourage you to follow instead of Facebook. I may add that no one single image or video I have yet produced contains me in a “sexual act” of bondage, intercourse or masturbation! Apparently my form is enough to be OFFENSIVE. Gee, what the fuck is that supposed to do to a woman’s self esteem? The very notion that someone finds ME “dirty” is sickening.
SEDUCTION OF THE INNOCENT
Even though the United States Government is now logging all tweets in the Library of Congress, I have not (YET) been reported for violating any TOS or actual U.S. law on twitter; but hey, you never know who I’ll manage to offend with my flagrant display of nudity in the name of “art.”
I know I need to update my formal resume but I have been modeling for artists and art students for a year now from Pittsburgh to New Jersey plus I’ve allowed some online people access to my photos for them to practice illustration or digital art from wherever they are. Since I was very young, I had a respect for the nude form. You want to know why? It’s because I was exposed to it. My father had Playboy Magazine. It was no big deal. I learned by age 7 that we have different bodies and that we should be respecting each other’s bodies.
That being said, when mine was violated, I repressed it – lied to my friends, family, peers, professors and mentors about it and pretended that it simply did not happen (because it became an issue at my college). I doubled my course load so I could graduate in 3.5 years with a full Bachelor’s instead of 4 years so I could be away from that environment. Much later, I decided to take charge. This is my body and FUCK anyone who thinks they can tell me what is “right” and what is “wrong” with it.
However, because of this action at Facebook, I will be deleting almost everyone from my personal profile’s friends list. Emailing me and pleading to be kept on will not help you. The facebook.com/amberunmasked will remain only with less images since they are so “offensive.” That Fan Page does not require approval to “like” it. My personal profile will be whittled down to only people I choose to have on there for the sake of my personal sanity and privacy. If any one of them reports me, then I hope they have the fortitude to talk to me FIRST about whatever I’ve done that offends them. I had also had my personal profile open to anyone but that will be locked down to “friends only.”
I’ve been an “artist” since a young age. I wrote previously about how I interviewed as a perspective student at the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon & Graphic Arts with hopes to pursue a career in comic strip illustration. I panicked and decided writing would be better. I opted for studies in Journalism at a conservative college for a Bachelor’s degree in Communications. People say, “It’s never too late.” I may just find the courage and finances to go to art school but until then I am very HAPPY and PROUD to model for those that actually have the dedication to the visual arts whether photography or illustration or portraits. I have wanted to be a model since I developed an adult female body – prior to that I wanted to be a boy and be a mechanic in the Army. Since that never happened and boobs developed, I am sick to fucking death of apologizing for my body “offending” someone. The fantastic thing is now I model at the Kubert School among several other prestigious art institutions throughout New Jersey!
The Comics Code Authority may be obsolete as of recent news when the very last of comic books decided to ditch its Seal of Approval; but censorship is alive and well in our social networking lives. My images have been reported to Facebook as a violation of their terms of service for nudity. The first instance was rather humorous. It’s the “Seasons Greetings” photo of me as Power Girl in my lacey underwear holding ornaments in front of my breasts. I still have not had one person explain to me how THIS photo is offensive. Someone on Facebook did say that when it was my FB profile pic and they were netsurfing while their child was looking over his/her shoulder that it caught them off guard. Ok – so that’s like a millisecond of a tiny avatar which, by the way, still has my “offensive” breasts covered by ornaments. I’m still not “getting it.” What the hell is offensive? Is it that someone feels I’m desecrating the pagan tradition of decorating a tree during December (please, let’s remember this tradition is pagan and not Christian)?
As of right this second there are 35 Facebook friends who “like” my fine arts gallery and many of them have commented about how incredible the artists’ work is; and keep in mind a lot of those images have been work-in-progress shots that I’ve managed to sneak in during a break. Due to recent troubles with Someone(s) reporting my images to Facebook police, I am going to delete that entire gallery. Maybe clay breasts are offensive. Maybe pastel hips are too seductive. Maybe oil painted curves of a women who has never had plastic surgery is so tragically offensive that it needs to be shielded from young eyes who see “better” images on basic network television! All it does is instill the belief that I “need” to look like today’s actresses to be considered an object of beauty that is NOT offensive. Way to establish role models, Facebook!
I know the people that appreciate true art – as in that of Michelangelo or DaVinci – see the same thing I see in these modern artists. They inspire me to perform well for them. I don’t care that I’m “an outcast” or “an outlaw” for what I do. I would proudly be arrested for the artistic expression!
IS THERE A CURE FOR THIS?
Massage School “cured” me of a lot my body issues where I had previously felt that I was never “thin enough” or beautiful. We learned so much respect for the human body no matter how much mass there was. I may not practice the craft professionally anymore (also due to government intervention and fees) but I will never regret the education I obtained at that school.
REPRESSION = DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
One of my massage school classmates had a student clinic patient that had literally just left her abusive husband moments before; she showed up for her appointment covered in fresh bruises from what he did to her. Her car was packed and sitting in our parking lot. The student advised her to cancel the appointment but the client instinctively knew that healthy respectful touch as therapy was what she needed at that time. It was magical. There is no other word to describe it. This, among the other reasons, is why I do my best to be WONDER WOMAN every October for Domestic Violence Awareness Month at COMIC FUSION.
Ok, so I’m NOT a researcher, scientist or other fancypants with a lot of pieces of paper hanging up on my wall but I do know that ignorance starts at home. If you are never exposed to something, you are more likely to FEAR it. That may be sexuality, but I bet you dollars to donuts, there aren’t too many people willing to even say the word “sexuality” no less admit that it scares them. I know some very Catholic people that have studied enough art to know that the human body is not something we need to fear. It’s a matter of education (formal or not).
Am I going overboard? Perhaps. But I do know that someone out there finds “me” and “my work” offensive enough to report me to Facebook, the largest and most powerful social networking site on the planet. In honor of being one of the people that bucks the system, the people whose books get banned or rewritten, I am launching a new women’s t-shirt design to show support of female figure models for comic book art and fine art.
This flagrant disregard of the art community’s First Amendment rights only makes me want to invoke my Second Amendment rights to defend the U.S. Constitution. Last I checked, New Jersey was still part of the Union! I still have a right to defend the Constitution. People can continuously violate ME and my work and my peers’ work in the name of “morality.” What recourse is there? What steps can be taken? As I’ve learned with PayPal, there is nothing one individual can do against the corporate machine that is allowed to dictate our philosophies, beliefs and ethics!