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DailyTidings.com
  • Timeless calendar girls

    Wearing nothing but aprons, they pose for calendar to raise money for women artists
  • Most people would be fearful about being photographed wearing nothing but an apron, but a group of local women — all of them over age 50 — did just that to raise money to give small loans to women artists.
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    • If you go
      What: Exhibit featuring Diana Rasmussen's aprons and calendars
      When: 5 to 8 p.m. today, Sept. 6, during First Friday Art Walk
      Where: JEGA Gallery & Sculpture Garden, 625 A St.
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      If you go
      What: Exhibit featuring Diana Rasmussen's aprons and calendars

      When: 5 to 8 p.m. today, Sept. 6, during First Friday Art Walk

      Where: JEGA Gallery & Sculpture Garden, 625 A St.
  • Most people would be fearful about being photographed wearing nothing but an apron, but a group of local women — all of them over age 50 — did just that to raise money to give small loans to women artists.
    Local apron-maker Diana Rasmussen organized the resulting spontaneous, exuberant photos into a 16-month calendar that is now being sold across the Rogue Valley.
    The calendars and Rasmussen's aprons will be on display at JEGA Gallery & Sculpture Garden, 625 A St., during a reception from 5 to 8 p.m. today during Ashland's First Friday Art Walk.
    The women who doffed their clothes and donned aprons also will be on hand at the gallery during the reception.
    Rasmussen, who has been making and selling aprons for two years, said her calendar idea came after a friend joked about liking to wear nothing but an apron.
    The day before her planned photo shoot, Rasmussen saw the photographs of professional Ashland photographer Mary Landberg on exhibit at the Plaza Salon & Spa downtown.
    Landberg, owner of Photography for the Uninhibited, works to capture dynamic, passionate photos of her clients.
    Rasmussen asked Landberg to take the photographs for the apron calendar, and Landberg agreed to take on the task for free.
    Rasmussen said she wanted to encourage the women who posed for the calendar to be bold and take risks.
    "The majority of women after age 50 are seen as invisible by society," she said. "As you age, you take on that invisibility internally and you stop living boldly. Women have a tendency to be living for others and to be putting someone else first. You become invisible to yourself."
    Rasmussen said the world needs the wisdom of mature women.
    She organized a photo shoot at her home studio and also posed for Landberg's camera herself.
    "For me, it was a whole group catharsis," Rasmussen said. "It brought me more solidly into who I am as a woman. It also felt really wonderful to me to be orchestrating a growth experience for other women."
    Landberg said the women started out feeling shy and nervous, but she helped break the ice by putting on an apron and dancing while her assistant photographed her.
    "The women then followed suit with amazing enthusiasm," Landberg said. "I gave them permission to express themselves in a very safe environment. I'm sure the laughter and whooping out loud could be heard down the street from our studio."
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