They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder and this woman went on Tinder to find out if that is really true.
For a project about self-love and accepting oneself, Turkish photographer and artist Eylül Aslan went on Tinder to explore what people love and hate about themselves… and her.
Eylül is known for her playful, sensual and sexual exploration of femininity. The artist posts photographs on Tumblr and Twitter which are concerned with the superficiality of society and they way we are conditioned to behave in response to that predetermined structure.
She started working on photography when she was in Istanbul and wanted to express these issues through capturing colourful and revealing clothing she was uncomfortable leaving her house wearing.
Her newest project stemmed from her and her friend exploring Tinder and its users and noticing the patterns between what people found attractive about themselves. For example, if some one fancied their own breasts, they would post photos from a high angle to accentuate their cleavage.
This sparked the idea for her new book Trompe L’Oeil which is a photography book based on personal opinions of the most and least attractive body parts. The book displays close-up photographs of eyes, smiles, ears and wrinkles, as well as self-portraits of Eylül.
She used Tinder to meet subjects in Berlin, and at each meet-up, she asked her match what they found most and least attractive about her and themselves. She then photographed these body parts as documentation.
After accidentally cat-fishing some one who was actually looking for a date, Eylül put all the details about the project on Tinder. It was then a personal decision whether or not potential candidates swiped right or left.
Eylül told Highsnobiety “There were still some guys who said “Actually, I just wanted to have a date with you.” I had to tell them that wasn’t an option.”
The artist said that most of the men involved in the project were friendly and interesting and have since become quite good friends. Other men joined in the project as part of their adventure while they were visiting Berlin.
“I was also choosing people that I thought were attractive, or at least interesting. I guess it was quite sexy to have that experience. You know that person likes you, and you like them, but you’re there for something else. So it was exciting, sexually and artistically,” she said.
The photographer spoke of her willingness to expose herself in the project saying, “It’s not a calculated thing, it just comes naturally. I like the fact that people can see me for who I am.
“I started making my art to release my anxieties, to understand who I am, and to be myself; to explore who I am as a person. My concern was never to become famous, to make money or please others. For me, taking photos is just a journey of understanding and of talking to myself. That’s why I do it, and hopefully I’ll always do it for that purpose.”
Through the project, Eylül has discovered that beauty is very much in the eye of the beholder. She said that people would pay attention to unusual details about her such as her ears.
“No two people look at you the same way. When you look at the pictures, there are not so many answers in common. All 20 men were saying different answers about the same girl. For me it proves that what people find ugly or beautiful is very subjective.”
Check out the book here.