May 3, 2012

“Dear Seventeen Magazine, How Can We Relate to Computer Altered Photos?”

“Teen girls deliver 15,000 signatures from petition on Change.org to Seventeen headquarters, hold mock photo shoot outside to celebrate their bodies ‘just the way they are.'”

Fourteen year-old Julia Bluhm coordinated with the SPARK Movement to help promote her popular petition on Change.org calling on Seventeen to feature a photoshop-free spread each month.

I’m amazed at these girls; they are standing up for something that most grown women haven’t yet. Magazines can and have been a wonderful part of our literary and media community. But when women’s magazines—particularly ones geared at teens—do nothing but manufacture discontent with our bodies and our lives, it’s time for a change.

Bluhm delivered the 15,000 (and counting) signatures to Seventeen Magazine’s editor-in-chief Anne Shoket today in person after the morale boosting mock photo shoot:

“I’m a teenage girl, and I know how it feels to think you’re not good enough,” said Bluhm, who launched the campaign on Change.org. “I want girls to be able to feel good about themselves, and being able to relate to the images in the magazines we read will help.”“I started this petition to help girls see that they’re not alone,” Bluhm added. “Seventeen Magazine is supposed to be a relatable magazine, right? How can we relate to computer altered photos?”


More from the photo shoot:




For more information on SPARK Movement:

SPARK is a girl-fueled activist movement to demand an end to the sexualization of women and girls in media. SPARK collaborates with hundreds of girls 13-23 and more than 60 national organizations to reject the commodified, sexualized images of girls in media and support the development of girls’ healthy sexuality and self-esteem.


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Photos: Emilia Gutierrez

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