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‘Sharing nudes is actually phenomenal’

The age of sending nudes is upon us. Sending naked pictures has long been possible, but in the 21st century it’s astonishingly easy. There is time to send them, how to shoot them and how to keep yourself safe. There’s no getting away from it, we’re a world of over sharers.

Whether popping political opinions in a Twitter thread or Instagramming a pain au chocolat, it’s never been easier to let the world know who you are. Technological advances have revolutionised dating experiences and sex lives too: apps, sexting, sex over FaceTime, and, of course, the big one. Nudes.

The term ‘’send nudes’’ is such a second nature for anyone on a dating app or social media that it quickly became a meme and can be seen graffitied all over the world. Although sending a naked photo has been possible for years- albeit more grainy, slow to load, or even in print, the farther back in time you go- it’s only in the last few years that the act of sending a photo of, or including, your tackle has become a regular NBD pat of the seduction process. High spec cameras, filtering and high-speed internet connections mean you can have the idea, whip it out, take the snap and send with barely a moment’s thought.

In the reader survey to mark GQ’s 30th anniversary, it was revealed 40 per cent of 16 to 24-year-olds have agreed sending nudes was the new normal. But why the change” is this purely a generational thing? Journalist Calvin reckons it’s an extension of the already popular thirst traps, the next level of seduction. ‘’Theoretically people have more dating options than ever. It’s a bit like in a game show when they wheel out the grand prize. ‘Here’s what you could win!’’

The rules around sending nudes seem fairly simple, but boundaries are overstepped constantly- usually by men. Most people would say an unsolicited dick pic is unwelcome- it’s much more polite to ask if they’d like one, or respond to a request- and yet men can’t seem to help themselves. There’s the view, perhaps, they ‘’might as well’’, but given they’re up against men actually using their charm to encourage a dick pic request, do they really think it’ll get them one straight back in return?

Unwelcome nudes are the top turnoff, but a close second would be a nude photo with zero artistry. There’s something quite depressing about asking for a nude and then being sent a snap, shot from above, of a red, angry penis subjected to the mercy of ugly lightning and a careless photographer. Obviously, turn-ons can vary, but context is key. Most women agreed that they tended to take more time over them, composing them to look not only sexy, but feel confident too. Men, however, preferred a more direct approach.

Lingerie designer Marisa says a topless pic does much more for her than a gonzo-shot dick pic and she much prefers to send than receive- when she can. ‘’Sending nudes is great fun; I haven’t had anyone to send them to me for a while and I kind of miss that adrenaline rush,’’ she says. Unprompted nudes can have their place, she reckons, but ‘’generally with someone who I’ve been chatting with or dating’ I wouldn’t send them to a stranger’’.

In a relationship, of course, nude photos are a way of keeping the passion alive and they’re especially useful in long-distance relationships. No more fiddling with a Polaroid or hoping the Snappy Snaps guy developing your film won’t call the feds- digital photography allows us to be right there and ready. It can build excitement and maintain intimacy, no matter how far apart you are, says one man, who’s been with his wife for 15 years: ‘’It’s become our regular thing on a Friday afternoon. She’ll send me a down-the-top shot- or more if she’s at home that day- and I’ll nip to the loo and give her a quick peek. Sometimes I’ll do a decent one at home and save it to send to her on Friday. I usually have a spare nude ready to go. We love it.’’

Often overlooked is the normalisation of nudes and its effect on body positivity. It’s well-known the regular, jeans-on selfies can be a confidence boost- either to reaffirm your attractiveness or garner interactions on social media- so it’s fairly obvious nudes can do the same for sexual confidence. Photographing yourself nude forces you to appraise your body afresh, there’s nowhere to hide; and while there’s every risk it could confirm your worst fears- photographing yourself from below can help you appreciate its wonder.

One body positivity in her forties says ‘’Taking nudes has gone from being something that scared me because I didn’t think I was hot enough to something that’s increased my confidence hugely. There are literally hundreds of naked photos of me online now and I’ve photographed over 20 people in their forties with varying degrees of good and bad relationships with their bodies’’

In the gay dating arena, perhaps, there’s more of a demand for nudes. Although straight dating apps are also popular with people wanting hook-ups, it could be argued gay men pioneered the openness around casual sex and specialist apps, born both of convenience and necessity: gay dating apps offer gay, bi and trans men a safe space to express themselves, on the understanding that everyone is there for the same reason and an approach will not offend. But with such freedom comes expectation. Bisexual guy Alex says he gets asked for nudes ‘’within minutes of initiating conversation. There definitely seems to be a culture of pressuring for nudes in the gay community’’

If you want to send nudes that you’re oh-so-proud of, by all means, go for it, just make sure you follow these rules first. Set your own boundaries. Nude doesn’t have to mean completely naked. Do what you feel comfortable doing- you’re in control of this situation. Partially nude photos can actually be way sexier than baring it all anyway. Try a sexy pose in your underwear only or a really cute bathing suit. Leaving more to the imagination sometimes gets guys more excited than the alternative.

Be prepared for other people seeing your goodies. You have a damn good body, so be prepared that your recipient is going to want to show off that photo. If you haven’t met his friends before, just know that the first time you meet them might not be the first time they’ve seen parts of you that you don’t to be seen. Be prepared for this but also be good person and don’t share nudes you receive with others without their permission.

Keep that pretty face out of it. On that note, make sure to keep your face out of it. Send a selfie you want, send nudes all you want, but for the love of the sexting gods, don’t send your face and nudes in the same shot just in case he turns out to be a douchebag who spreads the picture everywhere or just in case the phone gets into the wrong hands or whatever other horrible tragedy that can occur.

Don’t send nudes to men you don’t know. You may be very close to someone you haven’t met in person yet and feel comfortable sharing nudes. Only you can be the judge of whether or not you truly know someone well enough for this kind of intimacy, but please don’t send nudes to brand new guys. You don’t know them or their motivations and you need to protect yourself. And again, don’t send nudes under the influence. As most everything goes, sending nudes under the influence is a bad idea. You’re bound to forget all the other remaining rules.

Next thing you know, your whole body is in the picture, face and all, and you’ve sent it to your boss and then accidentally uploaded it to Facebook. Check your lightning and angle. A little bit of advice that’s different than the rest. If you’re going to send those nudes, I want you to send your best self. Take photos from above or straight on. Never take a photo from below looking up- everyone has a double chin at this angle. Try for natural light instead of harsh fluorescent light. So now, go for it, send nudes- just make sure your clean and well shot.

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WeekendLife

Feminism and Nudity still at odds

19th April 2021
Feminism and Nudity

This past week seemed like a time travel back to the early 1970’s where women were judged and stoned for what they wear, what they should wear, and whose attention their dress code will grab.

Every Tom, Dick and Harry gave their two cents on the matter, unnecessarily so. Its disheartening that in 2021 a woman is dictated to about what she should wear.

The genesis of the whole saga was because of a certified life coach and personal trainer, Agang Atlholang, derided as an example of an anti-feminist.

Atlholang updated a controversial post on her Facebook page where she seemingly attacked and dragged some women for wearing appealing clothes that leave little to the imagination.

The personal coach further went on to highlight that she could be fully clothed and be able to attract and steal some of these women’s lovers. Audacious of her to assume but more disheartening that her wardrobe is subliminally dictated by men.

It should be noted that this wasn’t her first controversial post where she has threatened or promised to take other women’s men, it may not be her last either but this post however did get on a lot of women’s last nerve.

“A woman’s sexuality is so much more than her thighs, (beep) and breasts. It’s your aura, confidence, seduction and the way you carry yourself, watching everything rock and roll in silence. I know who I am, I am a boss lady. I can still get your man without showing skin,” said Atlholang.

It is hard to place the fitness coach, is she pro-feminism or anti-feminism? Because one minute she would say something that makes sense and that almost everyone can relate to and other times she barks threats like a toothless bulldog.

She was not wrong to publicly and indirectly affirm that she doesn’t wear revealing outfits, but for her to be coming at those who do so was entirely out of line. How a woman presents herself to the world has a very little to do with a man’s preference.

Any personal liberation of what one chooses to clothe their own body is clouded by the misogynistic backdrop of the world we live in. In all cases, a woman’s body is assumed to be someone else’s before is it her own.

If she takes off her clothes, it is seen to be a sign of her insecurity and need for validation, rather than feeling comfortable with herself. Once she’s stripped, that’s all she is. This is the insidious pressures of misogyny that we all have a duty to attack and put in the past where it belongs.

WeekendLife reached out to Atlholang but her phone went unanswered. She did not respond to a questionnaire sent to her on Wednesday.
Celebrated feminist Resego Kgosidintsi says there should be no expectations on what a woman does with her body. Some women are thick and curvy, while some are slim and petite, all body types are beautiful.

Kgosidintsi uploaded two pictures on her Facebook page in which she compared herself. In one picture she was only in a bikini on the beach whereas in the other picture she was wearing formal attire. She went on to say;

“I am the woman in both pictures, my worth did not decrease on picture 2 because I revealed almost all of my skin and neither is my worth on a 100 on picture 1 because my skirt is below the knee.

I have about 7 tattoos on my entire body and that still does not make me less of a woman. I drink and smoke cigarettes too and that doesn’t mean the woman in church who doesn’t smoke or drink more woman than me. Can we respect people’s choices, can we respect women.”
Feminist, media personality and socialite, Oratile Kefitlhile shares the same sentiments as Kgosidintsi.

‘‘Feminism is subject, if I feel as a woman that when I’m fully dressed I’m celebrating my femininity, so be it. If another woman feels they are embracing their femininity more with their thighs out, that’s perfectly fine still. Let them be.

We have been preaching this revolution for a very long time of women being allowed to wear what they want, and being allowed to embrace their womanhood in the way that speaks to them, so I feel at this point we should not be having these debates,” Kefitlhile told WeekendLife on Tuesday.

Controversial poet, artist and businesswoman, Berry Heart is of the belief that women are envious towards each other. She argues that celebrating femininity has no boundaries subsequently making no one woman superior.

Quizzed on what makes women fight over small issues such as what they wear, she says “Batswana women are broken so much that we don’t want to see another woman succeeding on anything. We desire to make them dejected.”

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WeekendLife

The art of mastering instrumentals

12th April 2021
Kagiso "Fella" Kenosi

You will know a tree by its fruits, the same way you will know a music producer by their works.

Top music producers in the country have set themselves apart through the quality music they produce and reap the results of international recognition from as far as the United States of America.

These producers are behind every star performer, listening and analyzing each and every note. When artists perform a vocal swell, rising to an octave that sounds like it’s going to shatter voice box, it’s easy to forget that someone was on the other side of the glass asking questions like, “Can you hit that note every night, or will it hurt too badly? Maybe we should lower the octave to save your voice?”

Producers make hundreds of decisions in each song, not to mention the push and pull relationships they have with talented performers.These relationships can make or break careers. Some of your favorite bands and artists wouldn’t be so memorable without a great producer helping to guide their distinct voices.

Kagiso Kenosi, or better known as Fella in the entertainment industry, is only 31-years old but he has already left his imprint in the music industry. The young chap, originally from Palapye, is not in the industry to add numbers, but to do his magic working behind the scenes producing hit song after hit song.

When most producers went to school to produce the hits that we hear today, Fella’s foundation and passion for producing came from being active in church.

“I grew up in a catholic orientated family where music is the essence of our religion. The love for music in its entirety emerged from enjoying singing at church and blossomed over the years as I grew up, being exposed to the internet and software’s such as fruity loops.”

Fella says he then learnt how to make beats and proceeded with vocal processing so besides the love for music, he had an amazing group of people who helped him reach his life dream; being the best in music production. The sky was the limit for Fella.

Unfortunately for so many music producers locally, this kind of hustle is basically about being famous. Some of them bite off more than they can chew just for a quick buck that doesn’t even go a long away for them. At the end of it all, these fly by night prima-donnas end up cutting corners and producing subpar records which eventually leads to a premature death for their careers.

Fella’s advice is that fellow colleagues should be patient and continue learning the craft, even if it means taking online tutorials. “Even though I’m still learning too, for I believe music is a fast infinite universe where no one can never say they know it all, I think believing in what one does, the level of creativity and being able to stand alone can do magic.

We living in an era where people go through a lot, so it is imperative for a music producer to be able to relate to those kind of situations. This takes only the right instrumentals, which will compliment emotions of an artist.”

The most asked question outside the music industry is; who chooses the instruments for a song, is it the artist or the producer? Fella gave his take;

“I make instrumentals and keep them until an artist comes to work on a song. That’s when I advise on whether I think the concept they chose goes hand in hand with the instrumentals. We will then look for a more appropriate song.

In some cases, artists can come and we record vocals without an instrumental and then get to make a beat on top of the recorded vocal which in that case guides me to make a relevant instrumental,” he said in an exclusive interview with WeekendLife on Wednesday.

Digging more into finding the difference between a producer and an engineer, Fella clarified that there is not much difference. There is actually a thin line between the two even though an engineer does more than a producer when dishing out a song.

“We use the word production to credit people who only make beats. Engineers are people who record vocals, clean them, do the mixing and master the song preparing the record for radio. I must say an engineer, does the critical components of a song.”

As young as he is, Fella has been through thick and thin with young artists. It has been a roller-coaster of emotions, because, frankly some of these fledging artists are way too complicated to work with. Fella admits that he too has flaws but c’est la vie, you can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs.

“It’s always a blessing and quite exciting because these different people of different energies and mind-sets and creativity will humble you. It’s a chastening experience and also accords me with experience to manoeuvre and adjust to people with different characters.

So truly, it has helped me grow as a person, and a producer.”

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WeekendLife

BOMU spruce up dirty laundry

30th March 2021
BOMU awards

Botswana Musicians Union (BOMU) is known for its bad reputation that has been getting worse over the years. There has been a lot of chinwag, squabbles and the organization literally lost touch. It has gotten so bad that stakeholders pulled out, and members were left with no choice but to face the music alone.

Just when you’d think the waters are calm, the new Executive Committee awarded a fledgling company, Total Music Group, to handle the 2021 music awards. This move was seen as a biased decision that got BOMU members bent out of shape.

However, BOMU Secretary General, Rasina Rasina told Weekendlife that the Executive Committee that it has many irons in the fire. He indeed admitted without reluctance that, BOMU has been clouded by hubbub.

“We pledged when the new administration took over that it would begin with cleaning our own house. We have built structures as we had promised and we are glad that they are fully functional. One of those is the disciplinary committee.”

“BOMU has for a long time appeared to be lacking discipline and proper laid down procedures. This has led to the organization losing out big in its endeavour to serve its members and the entire music fraternity. The National Executive Committee, chapter committees and sub-committees have committed to ensuring that non proper governance and accountability shall take centre stage and this is all that is happening,” Rasina told Weekendlife on Tuesday.

Rebuilding and rebranding a disintegrated intuition such as BOMU is not just a walk in the park, it needs concerted efforts and team work to actually reach that goal. A stitch in time saves nine, but as for BOMU, the entire union failed to address its dares a long time ago, but the union says everything is on track in recuperating public trust and fixing the mess created then.

BOMU Research and Policy Committee is hard finalizing a new code of conduct which will contribute significantly to how members and leadership conduct themselves and relate with each other for the furtherance of BOMU’s mandate, Weekendlife has been reliably informed.

“We are doing everything according to our constitution, logic and reason. We advise our members that they should point out where the constitution has been breached and that they are at liberty to follow due process and report any misconduct to the disciplinary committee,” said Rasina.

This is following the suspension of some executive committee members and BOMU subscribed members for questioning the integrity in awarding the music awards tender. Some members, told Weekendlife that they will seek legal advice on the matter.

“We do have members who have already appeared before the disciplinary committee on various charges and decisions are yet to be taken. We also have members who are yet to appear before the committee for various complaints levelled against them. Current suspensions are related to various complaints and offences.”

With regard to appointing Total Music Group, BOMU National Executive Committee says it used Article 9.3.19 of its constitution. The article says; “The National Executive Committee of BOMU shall have the authority to enter into legally binding contracts on behalf of the Union.’’

Rasina says the leadership needed a company to manage, host and sell the BOMU awards for five years consecutively so as to attain stability and refurbish the brand image of both the music awards and the organization. “Without any money at our disposal, we debated on the best model and agreed that we should engage a company that also has the capacity to mobilize resources. We used our discretion and decided on a direct appointment model which is perfectly legal and constitutional.”

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