When you look at the photos of this new series by Vitali Gubin, entitled “Purity” due to the utterly pure aspect of the model and the photographer’s work, realize that you are viewing a story in still-life, for the model within, a total virgin to the process of posing nude for the camera, went through a lot to come to the final decision to take it all off for your enjoyment.
Coming from the big city, she’s always known about such things as strip clubs and nude photography. But she’d always considered it quite sinful, for, you see, she was “meant for the church.” Since she was 11 she had decided she would become a nun in the Russian Orthodox Church and serve the savior that her parents had, all her life, told her was responsible for “all goodness in the world.”
So, reading her bible and walking quickly past such places, she had successfully avoided her burgeoning, budding sexuality as she grew into a young woman. Then, however, she met Vitali.
Mr. Gubin, being an erotic photographer, is a professional, and quite expert in the skill of helping young women open up to their unmet desires. But the model in question was a special case. He met her at church.
The two got to talking one day after a sermon, and soon she asked him what he did for a living. Hesitant to tell her right away, he offered to take her for coffee and to talk about it there. It was over a hot cup of cappuccino that he broke the news to her. She was shocked and somewhat offended. But then Vitali started working his magic.
Who are we to say it is wrong to reveal God’s work? And who are we to hide it behind clothes? The same social mores that restrict nudity also work to limit religious experience. We are born naked. That is how God made us. Why is looking at one another nude a sin? We must not confuse it with adultery or violent sexual acts. It is simply revealing our nature. And in that, we are closest to our maker.
The girl sat there, wide-eyed. She’d never heard such talk. And she’d never considered such things. But listening to it then, it all made sense. She suddenly realized that inside her had always been a certain desire for such release, or, as she put it in an interview email to Met Mag, “to worship God in such an open, honest way.”
And thus she went from nun to nude, never losing her “Purity.”