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This Body is No Less Than a Work of Art J "Slim" Robertson for ISSUE 14



I am J "Slim" Robertson creative director, photographer, and the brains behind The Slim Creative. I started shooting as just another stream of income on top of my graphic design business in March of 2018. In the beginning, I was shooting literately anything I could and just for the side income. No styling, no directing, no purpose, just pointing and shooting. After a while, I started to feel like things were becoming routine and I was tired of just shooting. With my design background from my undergraduate degree at NC State University, I got back to my artistic roots and began to create stories and pieces of art that people could enjoy and love. I started to collaborate with other artists and creatives and do what I truly enjoyed. I became a creative director and not just another photographer. I style, direct, teach, pick makeup, hair, and so much more. Lately, I feel that I have found my purpose in this creative lane and that is to show my black Queens & Kings in a truly beautiful authentic light, and share my knowledge and opportunities with other creatives. No filter, no body modifications, just blackness in all its melanin glory. I genuinely believe we don’t have enough representation in the media in a natural way and I’m doing my part to change that one frame at a time. I took the theme The Body IS Art and looked at it in two ways. First is that the physical body and how it looks is art. How our skin looks in different lights and how our imperfections make us uniquely beautiful. Secondly, the way our bodies move can also be art. How they bend, stretch, and flow is beautiful and can be captured in such a way that expresses that. These two things are why I used 5 different muses of varying shapes, tones, and just overall bodies to show as much range as I could for this body of work.


Model Talea Harden

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio


"I took the theme The Body IS Art and looked at it in two ways. First is that the physical body and how it looks is art. How our skin looks in different lights and how our imperfections make us uniquely beautiful. Secondly, the way our bodies move can also be art. How they bend, stretch, and flow is beautiful and can be captured in such a way that expresses that. These two things are why I used 5 different muses of varying shapes, tones, and just overall bodies to show as much range as I could for this body of work."

Model Lyn Spells

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio


J “Slim” Robertson is a multitalented creative director and photographer based in North Carolina. He is the brain behind The Slim Creative, a collective of creatives and professionals who collaborate to provide stunning visuals with a unique visual message. What began as a side source of income for Robertson in March 2018 has blossomed into a full-time career, allowing him to explore the world of creative directing and photography. Having earned his undergraduate degree in graphic design from North Carolina State University, Robertson brings a blend of technical proficiency and artistic intuition to his projects. His portfolio is composed of original and one-of-a-kind visuals.


"I can look in the mirror at the end of the day and say I love who I am and who I am becoming."

A healthy body image doesn’t mean achieving a specific appearance. How would you define a healthy body image?


I would define a healthy body image as the image YOU have of your body that you genuinely love and appreciate. I feel the relationship you have with your body is more important than society's opinion of your body. It has to start and end with you because your body will grow and change and you have to keep a healthy relationship with it during that journey.



Has there ever been a point in your life when you didn’t like your body? How did you find the confidence to love your body?


There was a point, I'd say in High School when I didn't like my body, not hated it, but definitely wish I could change it. I have always been naturally skinny, and as a man that can be seen as weak, so I had that mindset growing up. But eventually, I learned to embrace it and understand that there is more to being a strong man than just having the look of strength. This was because I learned, that to change my mindset I need to change my environment and those in it.



How do you showcase body positivity in your creative work?


I showcase body positivity in my work in two ways. The first is by refusing to photoshop and manipulate bodies. I say it and have put it in my contracts and on my website. The second way is by doing my best to showcase different body types in my work and shoot them all in the most beautiful way possible.


Model Pyro Little

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio


Who are some of your influences when it comes to body image and body positivity?


I don't have any specific influencers, but I will say that my models, clients, and friends are some. They not only love my work but love themselves. This really influences me and lets me know that I am on the right path.



The fashion industry has long set the tone for the perception society has of body image. Is that still the case today?


I honestly feel like the fashion industry to a certain extent still has some control over what is perceived as the "standard" or what to strive for with respect to body image. But the fashion industry has nothing on the power social media has on society as a whole. Social media can touch all age groups, no matter what you identify as, where you are located, or your social standing. The fashion industry does still have say but I feel it's to a certain group of people that actually follow and care.



If you could change the way women are portrayed in the media, how would you?


If I could have control over how women were portrayed I would shift the focus from looks altogether. I would instead focus on what value they hold and what they can contribute. Let their skills, mindset, knowledge, and talents be what is seen and displayed.


Model Jamal McElveen

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio


Model Holley Jay

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio


Model Talea Harden

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio



Do you think men are equally objectified in the media?


A few years ago I could easily say men weren't objectified in the media nearly as much as women. But today I can't say that so plainly. Though I wouldn't say that men are objectified equally I can say that we are objectified differently. I personally feel like 9/10 times women get objectified for their looks. But when it comes to men it's a split between what a man looks like and what a man has or can do with what he has.



What factors, other than body image, contribute to your self-esteem? How can you build upon these other areas of your life?


When it comes to other factors that contribute to my self-esteem there are mainly 2 that I try to focus on and build upon. One is my work. As a creative nothing boosts your self-esteem and confidence more than people you admire and love, appreciating and hyping up your work. It can be your driving force when things just aren't feeling right. The other factor that really boosts my self-esteem is my ability to help others and be someone they can look to if they need help. I truly love being able to help others whether it be the classes I teach, the sessions that make them feel good about themselves, or the opportunity I was able to send them because of the level I am currently at in my journey as a creative and black business owner. I am constantly working on these two things to become a better version of myself so that I can look in the mirror at the end of the day and say I love who I am and who I am becoming


Model Lyn Spells

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio


Model Pyro Little

Photographer J "Slim" Robertson

Creative Camp Studio




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