I’ve been watching Nip/Tuck again and reading about foot binding, so this happened. Blood is Grimas Filmblood A. Feet and shoes are mine. They’re a UK size 5 but one of the things high heeled shoes tend to do is make feet look smaller than they actually are. It’s not the reason I own these shoes (or any shoes) but the whole small-feet-restricted-movement theme is definitely still a ‘thing’ these days in many part of the world, even if we aren’t break little girls’ feet, bending them in half and strapping them up to turn them into the ‘lotus feet’ that were the desired result of foot binding.
Until a few years ago, I thought foot binding was simply wrapping feet tightly in bandages so they didn’t grow. It isn’t. It’s much more horrific than that and there was a real danger of girls (feet were broken and bound at an early age) dying of shock while having the bones of their feet broken and forced into unnatural positions. If you’re interested in the history of foot binding, there’s some information about it on Wikipedia. The first place I read about it in detail was in the incredible memoir Chinese Cinderella: The Secret Story of an Unwanted Daughter by Adeline Yen Mah.
The look of the photo was very much inspired by the prevailing colour scheme and blatant gore of Nip/Tuck, one of the most visually impressive television series I’ve ever had the pleasure of watching. It was very important to me when creating this image that I didn’t fetishise the concept of foot binding or unintentionally insinuate any sexiness or modern appeal, hence the visual representation being very much conceptual rather than an attempt at a direct recreation of the aesthetic.