The female body is strong by nature. As women, we are sometimes unaware of its power and we need to be reminded of it. For centuries, womanhood has been described with adjectives that represent grace, beauty, fragility, tenderness, and more. If a correlation between these qualities and animals was made, perhaps, many would say that women can be represented by gazelles, doe or foxes. This kind of exercise is a perfect example of how society tries to typify the essence of women, and ends up reducing them to a single prototype.
When using animal analogies to speak about the virtues of women, why are not we comparing ourselves to lionesses, panthers, or tigresses? Why are these animals used to describe only men? Why are men the only ones who seem capable of taming them?
What if we could change those concepts when talking about women? With us, these creatures would become an extension of our might and power. Strength does not reside in the body but rather in the mind. These fierce animals would see the beauty of our body as something natural and would embrace us into their pride.
We are women in control of our gender and our thoughts. We are indeed, like female felines: graceful, agile, sensual, and strong.
Big Cats is a photo series created by Sylvie Blum. She brings the animal analogy to the next level to portray women power. Blum started her career as a model, but soon discovered a new world behind the camera. In 1991 she met the erotic photographer Günther Blum, and became his apprentice, muse, and wife. By his side, she learned the techniques she later used in her own work, and became the talented photographer she is now.
After the death of her husband, Sylvie did a photographic series that focused on a new subject: models. She obsessively experimented with the use of light, space, and the shape of the female body. She turned the shade, color and form of the women’s skins into marble sculptures and captured their beautiful figure.
The modern and erotic charge given to her models is notorious throughout her work. She has given us a new approach to the female anatomy; women are no longer an object, they’ve become the embodiment of strength, and a naked version of power. According to Maxim magazine, Sylvie Blum is the new face of erotic photography, because she has made the juxtaposition of female and feline something natural.