halfJulia Kozerski is an artist and photographer who uses her body as the canvas.

She was extremely overweight and lost half of it in a year by eating sensibly.  Now a healthy weight, she has published a series of naked self-portraits in a book called ‘Half’. However, rather than trumpeting the duckling to swan narrative we have grown to expect,  coming to terms with her slimmer body has been the hardest part of the process.  Where our culture suggests that thinness is an identity in itself – she found that it still wasn’t enough.  As she reached her target weight, instead of celebrating, she thought ‘now what?’

At one stage she almost tipped over into obsession:

‘There were times when I walked 20 miles a day…When you start counting calories, you want to push yourself, just 20,000 more steps, and it becomes addictive….There was a picture I took in the changing room in a store and I look very unhappy.  I was skinny and I didn’t feel well.  My blood pressure was high and my face was super-red…the word ‘skinny’ really freaks me out. I don’t mind the word ‘fat’…but the word ‘skinny’ bothers me…Like are you comparing me to the old me, or to a model? It doesn’t mean anything’.

Kozerski’s photos are a corrective to the air-brushed images with which we often compare our own bodies. As she says, ‘this is a real person’.

Full article from the Guardian, here.



2 thoughts on “Half

  1. Hi Emma,
    I thought I’d leave you a little note, saying that I was touched by this article (I’m addicted to food and as a consequence, extremely overweight. I need to lose half of my weight – which I’m in the process of doing). Furthermore, I thought you’d like to know that I’m translating your book into Dutch! Would it be OK to email you whenever I have a question about what you wrote? So far, it has been a joy (and a challenge) to translate your book. Your story is well-told and intriguing and I like your use of words.
    Thank you for your reply!
    Marianne, Netherlands

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