Legs come in different shapes and sizes, all of which are beautiful. Stacey Baker is here to prove it.
The New York Times staff photographer is using her Instagram account (@stace_a_lace) to show the world just how gorgeous legs can be.
Baker photographs women around New York City and then posts the images, along with the hashtag #CitiLegs, to her Instagram account (and Tumblr page). Each snap provides a unique look at her models' gams and, at the same time, puts a spotlight on what they're wearing. (Patterned leggings are apparently a huge trend in the Big Apple.)
According to Slate, the project began when Baker noticed the legs and the cut of a woman's coat while walking through the Waldorf Astoria hotel. She asked the women if she could photograph her, and after the woman said yes, Baker asked another woman. The rest is (viral) history.
"I love the serendipity of it," Baker explained to Slate. "Of seeing a subject, asking her to participate, finding a nearby wall, and making a picture. It all takes place in no more than 10 minutes. The fact that most women I approach are not only willing to stop, but also put their purse down, take off their coat, raise or tuck in their blouse and stand with their hands up—all for a complete stranger—never fails to amaze me."
Baker sees her image as more than just legs, too. For her, they're so much more.
"My favourite pictures are the ones that become something other than just legs; when they look like sculptures. I know they're just pictures of women’s legs taken against a wall, but occasionally, the deconstructed legs look like something more," she wrote.
We agree. Looking at these legs really allows the viewer a chance to see beyond the legs. The photos also challenge our perceptions of beauty, as each body is clearly different -- long, lean, curvy -- but they all look just as gorgeous.
And another interesting note: though the legs are presented as just fragments of the female body -- a popular method in film and media to present women as objects of desire -- they don't come across as tools to serve the male gaze. Instead, they are non sexualized and present womens legs as just that, legs. In all shapes and sizes.
Baker admitted, "As cheesy as it sounds, I do kind of think it’s a celebration of the female figure.”
Citilegs is just the latest body acceptance Instagram account to gain steam. The social media site has also seen campaigns like #ThickGirlAppreciationDay and #EmpowerAllBodies, and accounts like Eff Your Beauty Standards take off with extremely positive responses.
To check out more Citilegs photos, just scroll through the gallery below: