Hundreds of women across the country are baring their breasts for a new project to support breast health.
“b for a cure,” the brainchild of San Francisco photographer Peter Bruce, will compile black and white photographs of more than 300 womenâ€™s breasts in a coffee table-style book, with proceeds going to breast-health charities.
â€œEverybody loves boobs; everybody loves breasts,” Bruce said. “(We thought:) let’s create a book on breasts. And we might as well do it for a good cause and give back some money while weâ€™re doing it.â€
Bruce said the photographs will be anonymous and will include women of all ages, ethnicities and walks of life, including women who have lost one or both breasts to cancer.
â€œThis is not a playboy shoot, itâ€™s a real-life project,â€ Bruce explained. â€œWe want everybody to look at the book and say â€˜Wow, these are the people who could actually be affected by breast cancer.’ â€
Bruce is a seasoned photographer who has worked with Playboy, the Melbourne (Australia) Opera, major Hollywood studios and celebrities that include Michael Caine, Elton John and Vanessa Williams.
He became cognizant of the scope and severity of the disease after his wife participated in a 3-day walk in support of breast cancer awareness. After kicking around some ideas, he and a business partner came up with the idea for a book that would enhance the beauty of womenâ€™s breasts.
Bruce plans to print 2,500 books in the first run. Sale price will be around $50, with 30 percent of the profits donated to charity.
Although the charities have not yet been finalized, he envisions the proceeds to be split between a large organization with a good following, a juvenile foundation to help future generations and an individual on the cutting edge of breast cancer research.
Cal State Fullerton psychology major Anita Wadwa, 35, said she is skeptical about the project.
“I don’t see how photographing 300 women’s breasts is supporting breast cancer,” Wadwa said. “I wish people could come up with something more creative than nudity to raise money. If some women are willing to do it, great â€“ breasts are beautiful. But I don’t think women need to be exploited, even for a good cause.”
While most of the models will be â€œeveryday women,â€ Bruce said he plans to include at least one pair of celebrity breasts (anonymously) in the book. Only nude breasts will be shown in the photographs. No faces or bodies will be revealed.
So far, more than 500 women across the country have signed up to participate.
31-year-old Tamisha posed at the photo shoot in San Francisco last month and was surprised at how comfortable she felt.
â€œI think itâ€™s a great cause and it was easy to donate my time,” Tamisha said. “I donâ€™t personally know anybody who has been affected by breast cancer but it struck a chord in me and I like the approach that Peter is taking with the project.â€
Others are less certain.
â€œIn terms of posing for the book, I donâ€™t think I could do it, just because Iâ€™m not very comfortable exposing myself,” said CSUF marketing major Carmen Busa, 22. â€œEven though itâ€™s anonymous, I just havenâ€™t been in that position, I guess. I would definitely be interested in purchasing that book, though. I think the concept is really interesting.â€
Busaâ€™s sister Kristine, a CSUF alumna, agreed.
â€œI would not be comfortable with the pictures either, but I would definitely buy the book because I believe in the cause,â€ she said. â€œOur mom had an issue with her breasts and we know a lot of people with that issue in our family.â€
“b for a cure” is seeking females 18 and older for upcoming photo shoots in Los Angeles, San Diego and Las Vegas. Bruce said the modeling is done on a volunteer basis.
â€œ(Women) are doing this gratis, free, because theyâ€™ve either been affected by breast cancer or they see the beauty in the project,â€ he said.
For more information on the organization or how to participate, visit the Web site at: bforacure.com.