Stepping up to a mind-melting lookout, whipping your clothes off and letting your unmentionables dangle as freely as the day you were born. Welcome to the secret life of modern day nudists.
Brendan Jones, a health professional from NSW, enjoyed the feeling so much that he decided to take it one step further, creating a nation-wide community based around getting your kit off in the wild – Get Naked Australia.
He never really understood the big fuss around nudity and never developed the awkward inhibitions that he reckons society places on us. “It’s no big deal in my eyes, we’ve all got the same parts and we’ve all seen it before!”
How It All Began
Like all good things, it started out as a bit of innocent fun. As a modern day Christmas gift for his fiancé, he snapped twelve shots of himself at Sydney’s most scenic locations, each with a common theme: only a birthday suit allowed. He turned the cheeky pics into a calendar, covered it in tinsel and made his partner’s Christmas that year.
“I was always getting naked in nature. It just seemed natural and freeing.”
For a giggle he also created the Get Naked Australia Instagram page. It would seem there are a few closet fans of naturism out there too, the page went viral and in a little over a year the page has grown to 216k followers and become one of our favourite social pages in the digi-sphere.
Initially it was just his friends joining the starkers party, but it quickly snowballed and now fun folk from the length and breadth of the country share their prized snaps with Brendan.
So who actually gets nude then?
There’s certainly a nudie stereotype out there (and I’ve seen them at Lady Bay Beach); old wrinkly bastards who loiter on the rocks like pervy seagulls in search of an ‘encounter’. Give the Instagram page a quick thumbing though and a fairly different picture is painted – it would seem that men and women of all shapes and sizes embrace their nudity in all its divine glory.
The nudie scene is changing fast, with a lot more youngsters appearing to resonate with what the page is all about. The creepiness of it seems to be disappearing like a pair of Y-fronts in the wind.
Brendan purposely leaves models off the page as they distort its relatable nature – the purpose is to show a range of different bodies to express the message that every body is normal.
“It’s also not breaking any laws either – bums are always a giggle and we’ve all got one!”
As Brendan puts it, despite the odd grub, “most of the naked oldies live a carefree life and I have so much respect for that approach… they are often good to chat to at the beach.”
“Situational nudists” is how he describes members of the movement. ‘Normal’ people who don’t find walking through supermarket aisles with clothes on deeply frustrating, who are happy to wear clothes at the office and who don’t make fellow diners at Maccas uncomfortable.
These are just “a bunch of people who have thrown society’s negative approach to nudity away and who enjoy being natural in nature”.
Perhaps nudists aren’t all volleyball playing misfits after all, but rather waterfall chasing youngsters in tune with their primal instincts?
He’s even started a Facebook group for core members – although this hasn’t been opened to the public yet through a legitimate fear that a barrage of shameless creeps will have access to a fresh tribe of modern-day nudists.
“Safety of our members is of utmost importance and until we figure out a safe way to publicise it, we’ll keep it to invite only.
“Don’t go and flash your shit in front of a group of strangers”.
I was curious to know if he’d ever been busted mid-photo like a deer in the headlights or whether he’d offended more conservatively dressed bushwalkers. Surprisingly there’s never been any issues, despite being busted several times.
In fact, most will yell words of encouragement and last month a couple they stumbled across were eager to strip down and join the photo!
“It’s been great to see that people generally have such a fun and positive approach to nudity”.
It’s For Real
He finds it hard to explain why people get such a kick out of getting nude, but believes everyone who’s done it will understand. It’s thrilling in an non-exhibitionist way and totally natural to feel the elements on bare skin.
But mainly, it’s keeping it real.
“In a world of being fed such bullshit on a day to day basis, being naked in nature is as real as it gets. Particularly with other people. Stripping off after a huge hike and embracing life in all its glory with some of your best friends, or even complete strangers is so real!”
Brendan regularly receives photos from people telling him how the naked in nature concept has helped them improve body confidence. How incredible is that? It’s helping people accept who they are, to love the skin they’re in and shun bullshit judgement. More importantly – and this is where it really sings from our hymn sheet – it encourages people to get outside and explore the wild.
“In an age of social media we seem to have lost our connection with nature, this page is about people stepping out of their comfort zone by physically exploring the outdoors and mentally shedding their clothes and inhibitions. I’m glad it’s resonated with so many people.”
Amen to that.
Adventure ideas for beginner nudies….