Putting the Beauty Back in Beauty Marks
Beauty marks. Blemishes. Moles. Spots. Freckles. Birthmarks. Do you have any?
By any name, these irregularities on our skin make us unique, sometimes adding an air of individuality or beauty, such as with Marilyn Monroe and her iconic cheek mole. And yet other times, larger and darker spots or blotchy skin can make us the subject of ridicule. Who’s to decide?
Throughout history, some blemishes were even considered more than just unsightly: they were believed to be dangerous or cursed signs, entryways for the devil to get into the body, such as on a witch.
Despite the stigma, Australian artist Natalie McComas created an entire exhibition celebrating the beauty that others may find only to be blemishes with her new gallery entitled In This Skin.
See some examples of Natalie’s beautiful photography that reminds people to love the skin they’re in…
Artist Natalie McComas became inspired to do an exhibition on birthmarks thanks to Patience Hodgson, the lead singer of The Grates, who has a large birthmark covering her left shoulder and arm.
In Patience’s own words, “I love my birthmark’s spectrum of colour. When I’m warm it’s a kind of red-purple, like the colour of some plums and when I’m cold it’s a vivid, almost neon blue. I also like how it’s a kind of protective barrier protecting me against non-accepting and unthoughtful people.” Patience’s rare birthmark comes from Klippel Trenaway Syndrome.
Moving forward, Natalie decided to create an entire gallery of people living with large birthmarks, hoping to provide insight into their stories as well.
“In this Skin portrays subjects with prominent birthmarks and explores the effects this has had on their lives and psyches. This series celebrates these unique skin formations whilst also inspiring those, who may have a similar condition, to feel special and beautiful in their own skin.”