Adam Hurst, 'Overbearing Virtue' Adam HurstSt. Helen’s, North West Englandwww.adamhurstphotography.com@adam_hursty Adam Hurst is a recent photography graduate from Falmouth University, currently established in the North West of England. His recent project, 'Overbearing Virtues' is a personal investigation which confronts the pressures implemented on representations of the male physique. Enthused by his own struggle with body insecurities, Hurst has produced a series of self portraits, exploring his own relationship with traditional ideologies of masculinity, a gendered stereotype that has pervasively remained within western culture and the 21st century. 'Overbearing Virtues', is a personal investigation which confronts the pressures implemented on representations of the male physique. Motivated by my own struggle with body insecurities, this series explores my relationship with traditional ideologies of masculinity that have pervasively remained within western culture into the 21st century. It is my belief that the construction of masculinity is highly emphasized by the physical body and through this, a visual standard for masculine looks and appearances are set; tall and muscular being the social norm. Within this personal study, I have decided to turn the camera onto myself to create a series of self portraits, utilising my more slender figure to challenge these dominant expectations of the male form. The use of body language holds significance within my work, revealing an alternative, more delicate side of what it means to be a man. I wanted to use this performative tool to express my own personal feelings as a means of catharsis and in addition, portray a sense of vulnerability within the transitional space of exposure between the landscapes and the lens. I felt this was crucial to address within the imagery in order to truly confront the stigmas still surrounding masculinity; that true men shouldn't show emotion or weakness. This self-exposure within my work has allowed me to gain a new sense of comfort in my own skin as well as elaborate on an issue I care about immensely. In a society that may and can dehumanise men who don’t fit into social expectations, ‘Overbearing Virtues’ dismantles those distinctive depictions in the hopes of empowering others to embrace their insecurities and break their boundaries in the journey towards self-acceptance.