My bit about nude modeling is on Oprah –again!

July 22, 2015 • Posted in blindness, careers/jobs for people who are blind, Uncategorized, writing by
Visit the OWN site for the full clip.

Visit the OWN site for the full clip.

Last month an email popped up in my in box from the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) asking me if anything new has happened in my life since 2001, when I appeared on Oprah’s After the Show segment and spoke about my job modeling nude for art students.

After dozens of email messages and some phone calls and Mike’s photo sharing and my final Skype call with them, well, today I’m on Oprah again! You can link to the Oprah Winfrey Network to watch my original 2001 appearance about nude modeling, hear clips from my Skype interview, and see which of the many, many photos Mike sent that OWN decided to use along with my story. For those of you who want the Cliff Notes version, here’s how they summarize it there:

In 2001, Beth Finke sat in an “Oprah Show” audience and listened to a discussion about a topic particularly meaningful to many men and women: aging gracefully. As researchers and authors on the show discussed everything from wrinkles to workouts, Finke listened intently, but couldn’t quite relate to people’s common concerns. When the taping ended, Finke stood up to explain why.”I’m blind. I lost my sight in my 20s,” Finke said after the show, with cameras still rolling. “I have two things to say about that. One thing is, quit looking in the mirror! … Because as far as I’m concerned, I’m still 26.”

The second piece of advice she shared had to do with living without self-imposed limits. Though losing her sight freed Finke from the pressures of outward appearances, she told Oprah that blindness also cost her quite a bit in the process — she lost her job, the ability to exercise as often and “a lot” of self-esteem. Eventually, though, Finke chose to take back control of her life.

“I have been lifting weights for the last three or four years at home, and I just got a new job a couple of years ago doing, guess what?” Finke said. “I live in a university town and I’m a nude model for the art and design department!”

Oprah almost couldn’t believe Finke’s story, but it was indeed true. “I just modeled yesterday,” Finke said. “The boys were very quiet. The art professor said… ‘I don’t think they’ve ever seen a naked woman in the daylight.'”

Fourteen years after sharing her story, Finke is just as candid. She no longer models nude, but still looks for way that others can learn from her own experience….

…it’s me again. If you want to read the rest of the story, visit the OWN site. You can see and hear it all on video via a aol, and it’s also on Huffington Post.

Darlene Schweitzer On July 22, 2015 at 9:05 am


You are too amazing!!! I Love this. ?

Have a wonderful day! Darlene

Sent from my iPhone


bethfinke On July 22, 2015 at 9:08 am

Awww, shucks. THANKS, Darlene!


Barbara Timberlake On July 22, 2015 at 9:29 am

Dearest Beth,

I just want you to know that knowing you has changed how I look at life! I love u.


bethfinke On July 22, 2015 at 5:09 pm

…and knowing you has changed how musch I value a good hug — LOTS!


marlene targ brill On July 22, 2015 at 9:44 am

Once again, you have succinctly put life into perspective. Bravo to you and to Oprah for realizing she had a gem on her show years ago.

bethfinke On July 22, 2015 at 5:10 pm

I wonder if Oprah even remembers me? Maybe she does now…!


kaitlynfranzone On July 22, 2015 at 9:48 am

Wow! no idea you were on Oprah! Someday I will be there too.

bethfinke On July 22, 2015 at 5:11 pm

We’ll stay tuned….


Laura Gale On July 22, 2015 at 10:26 am

I love this! It’s interesting that the Oprah people are revisiting the people on the show, too. Love the courage and inspiring words, Beth!

bethfinke On July 22, 2015 at 5:13 pm

The courage to model nude in front of college art students, or the courage to stand up in the Oprah audience and talk about it? Either way, Ill take the compliment –thanks, LaRa.


Zest of Little Rock On July 22, 2015 at 11:15 am

Hi Beth! Katie Eisenhower (formerly McManners) from Little Rock here. I met you through the Arkansas Literary Festival. This post is timely as I have been struggling with body image issues lately. I’m practicing positive self-talk. 🙂

bethfinke On July 22, 2015 at 9:50 pm

Katie, of course I remember you. I *loved* our trip to Little Rock, and a lot of that had to do with you and your hospitality. You seemed so youthful, I can’t believe you are having issues with aging now. Hmm. Maybe you are about the age I was in that Oprah video? Quit looking in the mirror!


Sue Doyle On July 22, 2015 at 11:19 am

OMG…Who woulda thought!! Love it!!

Sue Doyle

Mel Theobald On July 22, 2015 at 11:42 am

You continue to amaze me. Anyone reading your book would know this story in more detail. As an artist I’ve spent numerous hours with nude models — male and female — and have always admired their confidence and tenacity when it comes to inventing inspirational poses, returning to them after a break and, most of all, being able to hold them for long periods of time. There might be a parable in there, because you’ve applied those same skills to how one might live their life. I often narrow things down to trilogies, which in this case are: inspiration, repetition and consistency. Those are real strengths.

Penny Matzelle On July 22, 2015 at 11:47 am

Oh Beth, as always, you continue to surprise and inspire all with whom you make contact. As one who has only one (hidden-in-a-closet) full length mirror in my home, your message inspires me to believe that this is the right way to live, indeed! Your fan, as ever…..

bethfinke On July 23, 2015 at 9:34 pm

From one fan to another –I will forever be your fan for that magnificent story you wrote about my visit to Long Island with my Seeing Eye dog, Penny. And now, if I ever decide to write a self-help book for people who are over concerned about their appearance as they age, I’ll title it “Stop Looking in the Mirror.”


Hank On July 22, 2015 at 12:53 pm

Wonderful to revisit this story. Thanks for bringing us up to date.

bethfinke On July 23, 2015 at 9:37 pm

…and wonderful to hear from someone who recognizes this is an *old* story

bethfinke On July 24, 2015 at 11:54 am

As Mike says, Oprah knows how to milk things….!

Marilee On July 22, 2015 at 5:53 pm

I can hear Flo giggling!

bethfinke On July 23, 2015 at 9:38 pm

She had a good giggle, didn’t she?


Cheryl On July 24, 2015 at 1:51 pm

This was one of my favorite outings with Beth. Overnight downtown, VIP treatment at “Oprah”, “high-fiving” Oprah as she walked to her chair on set. The looks and laughter of both Mim and Oprah after Beth told her story of modeling was priceless. As we left the show, so many people acknowledged Beth and said, “way to go”….”loved your story”. We floated out of there and now reliving it brings a smile to my face .

bethfinke On July 24, 2015 at 2:04 pm

What a coincidence: one of my favorite and memorable moments with you too, sister.


Zennie On July 24, 2015 at 3:30 pm

Although we were warned in class,I can’t help, you’re a special creation! I am tickled whenever you respond to my “hello Beth” at the start of the class.

bethfinke On July 24, 2015 at 4:23 pm

…and I’m tickled any time you’re there in class to say hello, Zennie!


Robert Ringwald On July 31, 2015 at 1:12 am

I’d like to see the clip on Oprah but can’t find it. Can you give me the direct link?


World-famous blind nude model tells all | Safe & Sound blog On August 7, 2015 at 6:26 pm

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