Gallery: Portraits Of Female Bodybuilders

We spend a lot of time here at The Gloss talking about women’s bodies — how we’re depicted in fashion, plus size vs. straight size, what we are and are not allowed to do with our reproductive organs, and so forth. Here, to add to the discussion, are portraits of some ladies who have chosen to become bodybuilders.

The series was shot by photographer Martin Schoeller.

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    • alexandra

      While I think the idea of adding another perspective to the discussion of women’s bodies makes sense, this does not seem like a good way to do it. The women here look like they have been chosen based on their exaggerated appearance, which doesn’t send a fair message about what bodybuilders really look like. I think Jamie Eason is a wonderful example of a successful bodybuilder who doesn’t use steroids (which is a huge issue). Why not include a photo of her, or even mention Dana McMahan, who has contributed so well on your sister site Blisstree?

      Bodybuilders are extremely varied in their appearance (and goals!), and posts like this perpetuate the idea that all women bodybuilders are large and muscular beyond what is possible for the average women and, indeed, many men. What’s the point? I’m not sure I entirely trust Martin Schoeller’s motives, and it seems inappropriate to title this post “portraits of female bodybuilders” as though every female bodybuilder one meets will be an unsmiling, nearly-unbelievably bulky woman with severe makeup.

      • Kj

        Amen! These women look like they are definitely on ‘roids.

      • Amita

        Jamie Eason is not a bodybuilder! She is a fitness competitor. Like all the ladies in Oxygen Mag. Not the same thing! They literally compete in totally different divisions in the same tournaments, like: Men’s Bodybuilding, Women’s Bodybuilding, Ms. Fitness.

        Basically, if you do Fitness, you’re consenting to being judged on “model potential” (i.e., face and hair, suit choice) as well as physique.

        If you’re a woman bodybuilder, you’re saying, “Who cares if I’m pretty? This is a sport.” RESPECT.

    • Lucky

      Number 8 has a white woman’s head with a black woman’s body. Am I the only one who sees that?

      • KT

        Bodybuilders typically use a TON of really dark fake tanners to create contrast between the bright lights and their skin tone (similar to beauty pageants, just more extreme). But they don’t put it on their faces, so it makes them look like they have 2 different skin colors.

    • Fashion Apparel OR T Shirt OR Blank T Shirt OR Tees

      oh nice post she looks stronger in that face……

    • kips

      “If you’re a woman bodybuilder, you’re saying, “Who cares if I’m pretty? This is a sport.” RESPECT.”

      Amita, the women in these photos are abusing steroids. I know that’s the reality in a lot of sports, not just bodybuilding. But it’s not something to admire or emulate.

      I agree with Alexandra. Let’s see some healthy female weight-lifters. I also wish the writer of the article had given some opinion and information on the photos, instead of just putting them up with basically no comment and standing back, letting the commenters hash it out. It’s like you are using these photos for nothing but provocation. You say you want to add to the discussion. What did *you* want to add?

    • saunterer@gyms in south jersey

      The women perform and compete in a kind of shadow world, which is often viewed as freakish and the contestants transgendered. However, the sport isn’t about gender at all; it’s about the pursuit of the perfect body and the spirit of competition.