Photograph from 'Kidnap snap' by
Photograph from 'Kidnap snap' by Rochelle Brock

‘Bigger, Rounder, Blacker’ // Body Positivity with Rochelle Brock

Rochelle Brock is a young photographer of colour from Brooklyn, New York. With her brand Fat Leopard Photography she has been revolutionizing the concept of the ideal body type. Her work challenges conventional beauty standards in America featuring beautiful curvy women of colour styled in the latest fashion trends. Here I will analyse Rochelle’s methodology and technique.

Her work can be deemed out of the ordinary by the way in which she documents the confidence that radiates from her models. Using colour palettes that shift from very vibrant tones to nitty gritty and the concrete jungle, Rochelle seems to have an uncanny know-how of evoking mood with her colour choices. While Rochelle’s work focuses predominantly on the bodies of women of colour and their curves she does not leave out slimmer body types and some of her series’ revolve around slim women.

Photograph from ‘Kidnap snap’

Rochelle has an amazing ability to move from a studio set up with soft defused light and pastels that amplify her subjects to a more documentary style of shooting which is an outstanding achievement to ascertain as so many photographers are stuck in one form of image creation.

Rochelle’s motivation behind celebrating marginalized body types came from her frustration with not seeing her own body type represented in any fashion campaigns and she set out to change that. Today, Rochelle has worked on various fashion campaigns and is a true ambassador of body positivity who expresses that she wants a bigger, rounder, blacker movement.

Photograph from ‘Jarae Hollieway’

What Rochelle enjoys about the body positive movement is that it has helped her come to terms with her own body shape and love herself for all that she is. Her advice to women who have larger body types is this, “Take up more space. If we don’t fit the ideal norm in society or even in the BOPO movement, we need to make sure we step into that “room” when we get the chance. Take up space and be heard!”

Femme photographers like Rochelle are actively trying to normalize larger body types and the fact that this kind of intervention is necessary is dismaying. Why should larger women have to fight or campaign or have movements for body positivity and acceptance when they are already beautiful? I am thankful for the body positive movement, as this is a societal problem that requires resolve. I do hope that with time the movement will have a larger impact and create more change into what is considered the ideal body type. Fair and accurate representation of all women is the norm that we need to strive for. All women are beautiful, and that’s that.

Photograph from ‘Jarae Hollieway’
Photograph from ‘Girls Girls Girls’
Photograph from ‘Girls Girls Girls’



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