Cris DD


Women in art; sometimes they are lounging uncomfortably against a mossy rock or a shady tree, sometimes sleeping, resting, often bathing, quite frequently they are naked, occasionally tied up, or otherwise in need of rescue. A woman outdoors, deliberately not meeting the viewer’s gaze. It is a fairly common trope in Western art.

This female figure is fully clothed, she doesn’t look into the camera, nor does she pretend to be passively unconscious of it. What at first I took for knitting (a nice, traditional, womanly activity) I have reassessed as unravelling; and the red threads which she unspools span from her hair, tethering her across the image, but also escape outside of the frame. This is a not a simple image in the long tradition of men portraying beautiful passive women, it is a far more tangled web, and it definitely won’t need a knight in armour to cut her free.



Blog photograph copyrighted to the photographer and used with permission by All photographs used on are stored on and are obtained via the flickr API. Text is copyrighted to the author, Rachel Irving and is used with permission by Please see Show and Share Your Work